An easy way to increase your ranking is and stay, since a long time, directory submissions. But… be aware to do it right!
To submit a website in multiple directories is a very boring activity (
not to say pain in the ass) and repetitive. That’s the reason why you have to optimise your work so it’s most efficient as possible, and suffer a little bit for having some results.
do not submit massively in directories
Especially for a young website, Google will it find rather suspect if many hundreds backlinks appear in one shot. Don’t take useless risks, submit your website in maximum 10 directories per week. First, your website won’t be published on every of them, because some directories are abandonned, what may be hard to know prior to submit your website to it. Then, your submission’ll published randomly in time, and Googlebot’ll also crawl randomly on these directories, so it gets backlinks in a diluted way, which is good for your "natural evolution".
(almost) all unique titles and descriptions
Another mistake would be to use the same description for your 200 directory submissions; it exposes the page where your site is published to duplicated content (simplier: your website won’t show up in SERPs). It may avoid the directory to rank on some queries; it’s often interesting to have directories ranked under you on Google, this way you occupy indirectly the battlefield. Another reason not to duplicate descriptions is that lots of webmaster will delete submissions that has already-indexed content (I do the same on Annuaire Design and Annuaire blogs design).
To make directory submissions, you need to be good at writing, and to own a good synonym dictionnary. usally, I do write a bunch of 255 characters long descriptions, all different. Then I use each of them for about 5 directories if I don’t know if they’re "alive". For good directories, write a real unique description.
Then, why different titles? Not for duplicated content. It’s rather because most of time, the link from the directory to your website is anchored on the title you wrote… it becomes then anchor text. Write a big list of anchor titles (avoid keyword list, must look natural), and vary them regularly.
track what’s happening with your submissions after
In my opinion, this is a very important step. If you subscribe weekly multiple websites each to a dozen of directories, you’ll be lost very soon, and you’ll try often to subscribe to directories you already did. It’s why it would be a good idea to create a Excel list, one line per directory, check if you submitted to this directory, and check if the directory published your website or not (when you get confirmation afterwards).
It will also allow you to target which directories are quick, and especially those who doesn’t publish anything anymore. It’s pretty useful if you launch another site afterwards, you take this list back and it avoids you wasting your precious time.
how to subscribe to more directories, faster?
Avoid all solutions where you may read the word "automatic"… the only efficient way to subscribe in directories is to do it yourself, one by one; or with a good semi-automatic tool.
A semi-automatic tool will fill up all directory’s form fields for you, all you have to do next is to fill up the captcha (human verification code) and send the form. This kind of tool saves a lot of time for forms, which is quite cool, but you still have to write tons of descriptions.
To do this, there are many US softwares (I can’t suggest one, I never used a US one).
If you’re looking for a mid-way free solution, there’s the great Firefox plugin InFormEnter. This plugin adds a button next to each fields of a form, which gives you access to a menu with all you presetted titles, descriptions, emails, etc. It’s slower than softwares but it’s quite nice to use.
Well choose directories
Many directories are
Beaucoup d’annuaires sont bluntly ugly link dumps, more or less abandonned and without quality criterions. This kind of place is not worth the loss of time. Not all directories are great, there are so much directories that you must choose. For example, you should not pay to subscribe to a directory…
There are some directories where it’s hard to be published, but you have to try because a link there is better than a bunch of links in poor directories. You’ll find easily a list of these directories on Google.
General directories, it’s great, there are plenty of them, but if you find a specialised directory corresponding to your site Web’s field, you must subscribe there. A link to your website, when it’s placed in a corresponding context, is more worth than a normal non-context link.
Last advice : avoid RSS directories if your website is young. These directories are more "important" to Google than you are, and as they publish your own content, they can easily rank over you, even maybe penalize you for duplicated content. Truncate your RSS feeds to let only a little introduction to the articles. If you don’t have RSS feed on your website, and you would like how to do it, I invite you to read my tutorial that teaches how to create a dynamic (PHP) RSS feed.
I have also written an article that provides a list of directories that validates good submissions within 72 hours (but french directories, sorry! Maybe english ones soon, do you have any suggestion?).