Criteria for Search City Directory Inclusion
If you have ended up on this page of the directory, it's very likely that your either very good at due diligence in finding a great place to build links for your site or you have received a rejection notice from us. This is the page to review if you want to find out more about the philosophy behind the directory and how sites are categorized, why we reject sites from the directory and how we police the directory. You might also find some search engine optimization tips or learn about our plans for keeping the directory sound and valid in the eyes of our customers.
The philosophy behind the directory is simple. We want to provide a great directory that benefits both website owners and those searching the internet for information. We initially started the directory as a means for exposing the sites that we promoted as part of our search engine optimization efforts. The directory provides a meaningful and valid html backlink for every site listed within it, therefore it helps some sites "score" better in search engine ranking algorithms used by some of the larger search engines.
How we setup the directory. In terms of software, the original directory was build on Gossamer Threads Links version 2.0, but it has had lots and lots of modifications and enhancements to insure that it continues to serve the surfing public well and to insure that it can handle lots of links and information. Nearly everything is automated within the directory day to day processing and all of the sites are reviewed on nearly a day to day basis - unless we want to go fishing that day.
How sites are categorized. We continually expand our categories and add sub-categories with almost every directory rebuild. Our goal is to categorize all of the sites added to the best of our ability, if we get something that fits in a broad category, but we do not yet have a sub-category we add it to the broad category until we get two or three sites that warrant the new sub-category. We try to put sites that offer authoritative, unique or informative content into the main categories of the directory whenever possible. All sites that are exclusively online retail or online shopping generally end up in our Virtual Shopping category - no matter what the product. Some retail sites end up in other categories of the site as well, this is because we believe that they have something more to offer and add value to the category.
Why we reject sites. We reject sites for a number of reasons, foremost being that the site adds absolutely no value to the directory - in otherwords "is crap". We also have a variety of sites that, for personal convictions, would rather not promote. A list of these can be found in the terms and conditions. We also reject sites that are using nefarious means of gaining search engine ranking. So sites that use cloaking, web rings, homegrown rings, excessive crosslinking, pop-up ads, pop-under ads, viruses, slightly altered presentations of the same site under multiple domain names or other means of Tom Foolery to get ahead won't be added to the directory.
Web rings - There are two types of webrings, the formal hub and ring arrangement and the "homegrown ring". The formal hub and ring arrangement is found on a lot of sites and there are lots of webscripts out there for developing your own. We discourage people from using these but will still sometimes add an individual site to the directory.
Homegrown rings or mini-rings or crosslinking - Are links to a series of websites with slightly different (or sometimes drastically different) topics. Homegrown rings typically have links to each of the other sites at the bottom of the homepage - sort of a cross-linking arrangement. For example a site owner might have a series of sites like:
Sometimes there are some really good content sites that do this. In these cases we generally add the best of the sites submitted. In some cases, if we have a slow morning or are feeling especially altruistic we e-mail the site owner and tell them to move those off to a links page and then accept them.
In the long run we think that these keyphrase domains will eventually be banned from search engines.
Every once in a while these folks are just smart enough to submit the alternate domains at different times and they will get more than one link in the directory. We are currently working on technology that identifies all of the domains hosted on a particular ip, related stuff can then be fished out and looked at a bit closer.
Other editor pet peeves summarized:
More to come...