WoW Directory

The WoW Directory was reviewed for Web Directory Reviews Org on Tuesday, August 26 and Wednesday, August 27, 2014.

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This is my second review of the WoW Directory, as it made it onto our top ten last quarter, holding down the tenth place. It is part of a network of directories that includes Skaffe, also in our top ten. For the benefit of anyone who may not have read my other reviews, I evaluate and rate each directory from the perspective of a directory user, rather than assessing their value to a site submitter. Generally, directories that serve their purpose well will also be a good place for someone to submit a site but, of course, there are some pretty lousy directories with high PageRank, as well as some very good ones that have lost ranking in the last Google update.

In my introduction to the directory, I will report on some of the SEO metric statistics, for what they are worth, but I strongly suggest that you evaluate a directory, or any other website, for that matter, on its own merits. As a human being, you are in a better position to judge the worth of a web site than any algorithm that Google can come up with. Don't sell yourself short.

For example, either there is a glitch in the ranking tool, or the WoW Directory has run afoul of Google's last update, as it has a PageRank of zero. I didn't report PageRank during my reviews last quarter because I consider that particular metric to be darned near useless, as Google itself has deprecated it, but I think I'd have noticed if it had no PageRank at all. I'm just guessing here, but it is possible that Google is acting against directory networks, since so many of them produce a low quality product, but Skaffe still has its PageRank. I hope it's just a glitch, because I like the WoW Directory. It has been around since late 2003 or early 2004, and has enjoyed a good reputation.

Moz is a more reliable indicator, however. Its Moz Domain Authority is 51/100 and the Page Authority of its index page is 60/100, while its Page MozRank is 5.48 and its Page MozTrust is 5.67, which are more respectable numbers.

Its Alexa Traffic Rank is 153,640, and its Majestic (formerly MajesticSEO) Trust Flow is 34, and its Citation Flow is 36.

SEO metrics play no part in my ratings, however. For the purpose of this review, I will be assessing the directory's value as a directory, from the perspective of someone who has come to the WoW Directory to find something. In doing so, I will be reviewing it in five areas, some with differing values: aesthetics (10%), size (25%), intuitiveness (20%), quality (20%), and usefulness (25%). In addition, I may assign up to five points to the total for extra content, being positive qualities of the directory that are not adequately assessed elsewhere.

When I am reviewing a directory that has been in the top ten during the previous quarter, I may remember my earlier review, but I don't refer to it unless it is to make a point that I consider pertinent. By their nature, reviews are largely subjective and, as a human being, my opinions may change from one month to another. It will have been approximately three months since my last review of this directory, so it is entirely possible that I might look at the same thing and rate it differently than I did last time, although I'm generally fairly consistent.

Aesthetics - 7/10

Like its sister site, Skaffe, the WoW Directory looks somewhat busy; I like its retro look but I recognize that someone else's tastes might differ. I'm a sucker for pastels.

Unfortunately, its main menu couldn't be more asymmetrical if that was the look they were going for. Upper-level category names range from one to three words, and there is an uneven number of categories in each of its two columns. That doesn't ruin the look of the directory, but neither does it help.

There are no third-party ads on its index page or in its internal pages, and the entire thing displays above the fold on an average monitor.

Overall, it leaves a pretty good first impression, I think.

Size - 25/25

In order to determine the size of a directory, I scan the directory domain prior to my review. For the sake of time, and to reduce the likelihood of a crash, either of the directory server or my scanning program, I limit my scans to 500,001 links, and the WoW Directory maxed out at that number. Please review the criteria for this quarter in order to better understand the rating for this section of the evaluation.

Intuitiveness - 15/20

The WoW Directory uses a cross referencing system that allows an accepted site to be automatically placed in the appropriate topical and regional category when it is added to the town of origin during the submission process. The good point to this is that someone browsing the directory is likely to come across whatever he is looking for whether he is browsing its topical or regional categories. The downside is that this seemingly requires a full set of topical categories beneath each regional town category whether there is content there or not, and it can be frustrating to click through to the bottom of a category tree only to find it empty.

Category name choices are reasonably intuitive, and geographic subcategories are separated from topical subcategories in its internal pages.

Quality - 13/20

The WoW Directory withstood a scan from Scrutiny, the program that I uses to assess its size. It did not find very many bad links. However, and I think I noted this in my last review, there is a section on the site's index page, entitled, "WoW Search," which includes what I believe are intended to be preconfigured searches; all of these result in a 404 error when clicked.

For the most part, the directory uses a sentence fragment model for site descriptions and, although its submission guidelines specifically call for the correct business title of a site only, in the title field, I have come across several that include extraneous keywords. Still, sites tend to be in appropriate categories or subcategories, and I am not seeing overtly promotional language in site titles or descriptions.

There are, as I noted earlier in this review, quite a few empty categories, particularly at the bottom of category trees.

Usefulness - 15/25

There are no category descriptions, and I consider this to be a significant minus as far as the usefulness of the directory is concerned, and, although its site descriptions are adequate, more descriptive descriptions would be a plus.

It looks pretty good on an iPad, and is fairly easy to follow on a smaller screen, such as my smart phone.

There is plenty of content on the WoW Directory for it to be useful, and it is organized in such a manner that a directory user should be able to find it without a great deal of difficulty, but the empty categories might prove troublesome.

Overall Rating - 75%

Based on my evaluation of the WoW Directory on Tuesday, August 26 and Wednesday, August 27, 2014, I have given it a rating of seventy-five percent.

Comments

While I do not consider the Google PageRank of a site to be significant, the sudden loss of PageRank can be a significant factor, particularly for a web directory, if only because so many people do consider Google PageRank to be the primary indicator of the worthiness of a website. This perception, if not the reality, can be disastrous for a web directory in the climate of fear that Google has imposed of late. As I said before, I hope it's a glitch.

By the way, the WoW Directory accepts free submissions, but its submission page warns of a long wait. Express reviews are $43, while Sponsored advertising is $65, both for lifetime listings.

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