WoW Directory

The WoW Directory was evaluated for Web Directory Reviews Org on April 4, 2014.

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The WoW Directory has been online since 2003 or 2004, as it first appears in the Internet Archive on February 3, 2004.

The Moz Domain Authority of the WoW Directory is 50/100, while the Page Authority of its index page is 58/100. The Page MozRank of its index page is 5.52, and the Page MozTrust is 5.74. The Majestic SEO Trust Flow is 23, and its Citation Flow is 21. These numbers aren't at all significant, except perhaps by way of comparison, but there you have it.

Free submissions are available during most weekends only. Otherwise, the fee for an express review is a one-time payment of $43, while a sponsored review is $65, also as a one-time payment. Site descriptions are limited to two hundred characters.

I repeat this in every one of my reviews but, while I hate to be redundant, I have to assume that someone will be reading just one of my reviews, and I don't want to leave anyone confused as to what I am doing here.

While I can understand that SEO metrics are important to those who are thinking about submitting their site to a web directory, too often they seem not to represent the actual qualities of a directory.

For example, new directories do poorly in SEO metrics, and this is not necessarily a reflection on the quality of the resource; only that they have not yet had time to accumulate the content and back links that will be necessary to rate well in the metrics, many of which are prejudiced in favor of age.

There is certainly a place for SEO metrics, but a directory should not be judged entirely by numbers. I operate several websites, and I do not hesitate to submit my site to a new directory that is well organized and maintained, regardless of what the metrics might say. At the same time, I won't pay a lot of money to submit my site to a directory with poor metrics.

Keep in mind, however, that some of the metrics that webmasters have depended upon for years are unreliable. Google PageRank, for example, has been the staple of SEO for many years, and a lot of people still fret over it, this despite the fact that Google has deprecated its PageRank system years ago, and its own spokespeople have asked that we not rely upon it. Google rarely updates its PageRank now, and it is less than useless as an indicator of quality. For that reason, I will no longer be reporting on PageRank.

Alexa Traffic Rank might be worth looking at, if only because a lot of people do. I look at my Alexa numbers, and manipulate them from time to time. There are two basic problems with Alexa Traffic Rank as a metric. One is that its results are based primarily on statistics accumulated from users who have the Alexa toolbar installed, and this is not a valid representative sample of Internet users. The other problem is related, in that a large percentage of those who have the toolbar installed are those who are interested only in manipulating their own numbers.

Although I believe that the Moz and Majestic SEO metrics are more valid than Google and Alexa, they do not necessarily represent the quality or worthiness of a directory either, so I am including them in my reviews for the sake of information only, but I do not use SEO metrics in calculating the ranks that I assign to a directory that I review.

Each quarter, I review twenty web directories. Ten of them are the ones that ranked in the top ten during the previous quarter, while the remainder are directories that I am reviewing for the first time, generally.

This is the first time that I will be reviewing the WoW Directory. It is not a new directory, but neither is it among the oldest.

When I review a directory, I try to do so from the perspective of a potential directory user, which is someone who has come to the directory hoping to find a resource that is listed there, and not as a site submitter or search engine optimization professional.

I review the qualities of a directory in five areas: aesthetics (10%), content (25%), intuitiveness (20%), quality (20%), usefulness (25%). In addition, I may assign up to five extra points for useful content that is outside of that usually found in web directories. This might include active blogs, webmaster tools, informative articles, or other features.

Aesthetics - 6/10

The WoW Directory has a retro look about it, using a lot of pastel colors. My first impression was that I didn't think I liked it, but it's growing on me. I could understand if someone hated it, but it would also be reasonable to love it. I lean toward liking it. I suppose I shouldn't be surprised to learn that the WoW Directory is a part of the Skaffe network. I don't like it as well as I do the Skaffe directory, but there are similarities.

There are two main menus, one topical and the other regional. Its topical menu is arranged in two uneven columns, one with thirteen, and the other with twelve upper-level categories. Its upper-level category name choices are asymmetrical, ranging from one to three words.

Content - 24/25

I scanned the WoW Directory yesterday, and it topped out at 400,000 links, making it one of the larger directories on the Internet. Scrutiny flagged only three hundred and fifteen of these links as bad, and at least half of that number were timeouts that are not actually bad.

There are quite a few empty categories, but this may be a result of its topical-regional cross-referencing system, which I will talk more about in the next section.

Intuitiveness - 15/20

Unlike most web directories, its regional section is not separate from its topical trees. The WoW Directory uses a cross referencing system that allows sites to be automatically added to the appropriate topical and regional category when it is added to the town of origin during the submission process.

There are pros and cons to the directory's cross-referencing system. On the positive side, whether I begin by surfing its topical tree or its regional tree, I am going to come across whatever content the directory has to offer that is appropriate to the categories that I am browsing.

On the negative side, this seems to require a full set of regional and topical categories even when it means that several of them have no content, and it can be frustrating to browse several clicks into a category tree only to find nothing at the end of it.

The directory's category name choices and structure makes sense, overall. Large categories are divided in a way that I'm not sure that I like. For example, under the Internet category, we have subcategories for Web Site Designers, Web Site Designers 2, Web Site Designers 3, Web Site Designers 4, and Web Site Designers 5. I am thinking that alphabetizing might have been a better choice but, at the same time, it's better than having twenty pages of sites listed in one category.

Quality - 15/20

The WoW Directory, like many others, uses a sentence fragment model for site descriptions and, although there are some fairly good ones, most of its descriptions are on the skimpy side.

Several listed sites have titles that include added keywords or promotional text, and some that use the domain name, but the majority of them do reflect the actual title of the site. I am including a few examples below.

Kudzu.com: the easy way to find the best services
The best source for finding quality service professionals. From accountants to window washers Kudzu.com has detailed listings, credentials, and consumer reviews.

The Phelps Group: Integrated Marketing Agency
Offers Integrated Marketing Communication, for Los Angeles and national clients. Advertising, public relations, media services, internet marketing, promotions.

Archway Marketing Services: Marketing Advertising Fulfillment
Consulting and execution services for your marketing campaigns from planning to post sales CRM.

The directory's submission guidelines call for the correct business title only, specifically prohibiting the use of added keywords or anchor text.

I mentioned it earlier but, since it applies here as well, there are very few bad links for a directory the size of the WoW Directory, and it withstood a Scrutiny scan easily, whereas I have had a few other directories slow considerably during a scan, and one even crashed.

The directory's right sidebar includes a box entitled "WoW Search," which leads to preconfigured searches on wowsearchengine.com. However, while the domain is valid, the searches lead to 404 pages.

Usefulness - 15/25

Certainly, there is enough content for the WoW Directory to be useful. Finding it is another matter. While I love the cross-referencing system that the WoW Directory uses between its topical and regional categories, it leads to a lot of empty regional categories, which can be disappointing after clicking several levels into its regional tree.

When site descriptions are adequate, or useful keywords have been added during the submission process, its content can be found through the directory's search features, which handles multi-word searches fine. Users on a mobile device may use its mobile search feature.

Although it would be difficult to do at this point, given its large number of categories, I think that the lack of category descriptions hurts. Well written, informative category descriptions add useful content to the directory, aid directory users and submitters alike, and they also provide textual content useful for search engine optimization. Nearly every web directory script includes a category description feature, and it is a shame that so many directories do not make use of it.

Overall Rating - 75%

After reviewing the WoW Directory on April 4, 2014, I have rated it at seventy-five percent.

Comments

Overall, I like the WoW Directory. It's an attractive directory, and it has a lot of content that is pretty well organized. I disagree with its policy of using sentence fragments rather than grammatically correct sentences, and with the lack of category descriptions. On a whole, it's one of the better directories, however.

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