Web Tips


Getting Listed in the Yahoo! Directory

by Jerry West
Updated July 15, 2010

Getting listed in Yahoo! isn't as vital as it used to be with website owners. With Google's dominance, the market share for Yahoo! has been cut in half to single digits about 6%. There have been some months where Yahoo! has dipped into the 2-3% range for organic traffic referrals.

Many Webmasters ask about the Yahoo! Directory, but if it is traffic that you want from Yahoo!, skip it. Yahoo! no longer uses the results from their directory in their search results. Another solid directory to consider that has just as much authority as Yahoo! is Best of the Web. Make sure you get the lifetime subscription. While it is pricey, along with a Yahoo! listing it will help give your site the authority it has been lacking and your rankings will increase ... yes, even the ones with Google.

Yahoo! has changed how it's search results are displayed many times over the years. Before July 4, 2000, it's search results were served up by Inktomi. Inktomi lost the account to Google, the current Goliath of search engines (about 70% market share). Then in February of 2004, Yahoo! changed to their own search index powered by Inktomi, whom it had purchased the year before.

If your aim is to get organic traffic from Yahoo! and Google, a good place to start is getting listed in the Yahoo! Directory. You may be confused. Didn't I just say Yahoo! doesn't use their directory listing in their search results? That's true. However, sites that get listed in the directory often get spidered by Google. Why this happen is purley speculation but since Yahoo! has a quite a bit of stock in Google, there is a relationship there, despite the competition between the two companies. This is well worth the $299 submission fee! Google even suggests a listing in the Yahoo! Directory as a way to get into their index. Imagine that.

Yahoo! Directory Submission
Tips and Suggestions

Here are some helpful hints to get your site accepted by the Yahoo! editors - who often are inconsistent themselves.

  1. Your pages should be professionally designed. Yahoo! prefers attractive pages that are visually appealing for the paid directory.
  2. Do not make up a name just to get to the top of their directory (i.e. A1 Hobby Shop). It doesn't work anymore. Yahoo! no longer serves up it's search results alphabetically. If you do attempt this, it is highly likely that the editor will modify your Title.
  3. Leave "Hype" out. Yahoo! editors "love it" when they run across a site with "hype" everywhere, as they can reject it immediately and go onto the next submission. While you want to incorporate keywords in your Company Name and Description when you submit to Yahoo! you don't want it coming across as "hype".
  4. Yahoo! doesn't really care how good your site is, they will only accept it for inclusion if it will improve their index. Look at your submission from their point-of-view. They are out to maintain the best directory on the web. If your site does not improve their directory, why would they include it? So, if your site is good, but it is basically the same as other sites already in Yahoo!'s Directory, there is a strong chance it will be rejected and you will have paid the submission fee for nothing.. If your industry is well-represented in their directory, look at another category, or better yet, a regional category.
  5. Contact Information. You should have complete contact information on every page of your website. Contact information should include: Company Name, Complete Street Address, Phone Number, Fax Number and E-mail contact. Now, here is the tough part, the contact information must match the contact information with Network Solutions (InterNIC) and the contact information included with the submission. If it doesn't, your site may be rejected. We also suggest having a phone number for "Customer Care" - Yahoo! seems to love that buzzword.
  6. You must also have your Privacy Policy, Terms of Use, Return Policy, Warranty, Guarantee, and Shipping Information linked clearly on your main page.
  7. All images should load. Test your site to verify that there are no "broken" images anywhere on your site.
  8. Links: Verify all of your links. Any bad links can get your site disqualified from submission into Yahoo!
  9. If your site sells ANYTHING, make sure it is placed in the Business and Economy section. Any other and it will be rejected.
  10. It takes Yahoo! seven business days to review your site.
  11. Provide a copyright notice at the bottom of at least your main page - preferably on every page. Make sure it has the current year - and you may also consider putting a "Last Updated on . . . " so Yahoo! knows your site gives fresh content.
  12. Regional submissions have the best acceptance ratio. So if your site fits into a region, submit it there. The reason you have a better shot is that regional submissions go to specific editors for that region and their workload is generally lighter than those of the categories. Also, your site tends to be reviewed more quickly.
  13. The relevancy score for Yahoo! is based on the Category, Title, Description and URL.
  14. The use of links to sites like The Better Business Bureau and Truste have helped many companies get listed in Yahoo!
  15. If you're trying to get a second domain listed for the same company, make sure you use different contact information and present it in a new and unique way in a different category. Don't link back and forth between the first domain and the second. Keep them totally separate. Once they're indexed, then you can go back and link them together with no problem.

Don't forget to get your site listed in Best of the Web. Make sure you get the lifetime subscription. It is WELL worth the money according to our testing.

Check back often, or subscribe to our Newsletter to guarantee you will receive the information once it is available.

Note: Yahoo! continues to make changes to their Yahoo! Search. See more about Yahoo! Search Results Changes.


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Jerry West is the Director of Internet Marketing. He has been consulting on the web since 1996 and has assisted hundreds of companies gain an upper-hand over their competition. Visit Web Marketing Now for the latest in marketing tips that are tested and proven.