You always hear how important the online environment is for business - but how do you know what you should be paying for, or who may be ripping you off?
There are millions of online directory sites out there such as Hotfrog,Yellow, Finda, and Gopher, some of which are free and some of which cost your business. There is no doubt that these sites are beneficial for online exposure and for driving traffic to your website, however some of them charge large amounts of money with very little return on investment.
Rules of thumb
- If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
- The majority of people do not visit a directory site first off to look for your product or service, they simply type what they need straight into Google.
- Make sure you have all offers surrounding what you’re paying for in writing, if it is not in the contract don’t believe it.
- Make sure you are not signing up to a long-term fixed contract. The online environment is very fluid and dynamic, and it is hard to gauge what the situation will be like in 6 months or a couple of years time. Ensure you can end the agreement easily and immediately.
- Paying more does not necessarily mean it is better.
- Call a business that is obviously paying for a listing and ask them how much business it has generated for them.
- If you are offered a listing option for a cost, there is probably also a free basic listing available which they haven’t mentioned yet – more often than not the free listing will be sufficient.
- With so many free directory sites, a site that charges for a listing needs to have something pretty special on offer.