Yahoo Directory

Upon an assessment of the Yahoo! Directory on June 20, 2013, I have rated the directory at 77%.

During the first quarter of 2013, the Yahoo! Directory was the number one directory, based on the criteria that was in use at that time.

Each quarter, the top ten directories from the previous quarter will compete against one another, as well as ten additional directories. At the end of each quarter, however, the assessment criteria is itself evaluated, and changes made when indicated.

During the first quarter, we measured both its SEO value to webmasters and search engine optimization professionals, as well as the value that a directory may have to its end users, who may be looking for online resources.

This quarter, we are assessing a directory's value from the perspective of a potential directory user, operating from the assumption that, if a directory can serve the purpose for which directories were created, that being to direct people to useful web resources, it will also serve the interests of anyone whose sites are listed there, and because the purpose of this site is to review web directories, not sites that are simply using directory scripts to sell back-links.

Knowing that there is still an interest in the value of a web directory for SEO purposes, we will be looking at these statistics, and reporting there here, although they will not be used for the purposes of the site's rating.

The main page of the Yahoo! Directory has a Google PageRank of 8. Its second-level categories range from 6-7, third-level categories from 5-6, and many of its deeper level categories have PageRank as well. Approximately 858,000 of its pages are indexed by Google. Its SEOmoz Page Authority is 91, and its MozRank is 6.48.

The Yahoo! Directory's Alexa Traffic Rank is 4, its SEMRush Rank is 5, its SEMRush Search Traffic is 134,928,651, and its MajesticSEO number is 20,033,087,413.

The directory has 314 StumbleUpon stumbles, 286 Twitter tweets, and 51 Google +1 clicks.

The Yahoo! Directory does accept free submissions from non-commercial sites, although the chances of an accepted submission by that route are low. Otherwise the submission costs are $299 per year, non-refundable. Payment of the fee is required for commercial listings, but available for any site.

During the portion of the review that counts toward a rating, we will be looking at five general areas: aesthetics, content, intuitiveness, quality, and usefulness.

Aesthetics - 12%

The Yahoo! Directory has a very simple look about it, consisting mostly of white space, with fourteen main-level categories arranged in two columns, each of them boxed in. Additionally, there are boxes for New Additions and Subscribe Via RSS.

The directory is easy to read, but there is nothing special about the look of it. For the sake of symmetry, it would be better if its top-level category names were all one word or all two words divided by an ampersand, but the fact that they are all contained within their own box minimizes the lack of symmetry.

Content - 18%

The Yahoo! Directory is one of the oldest and one of the most active directories in the Internet. The directory not only receives a large number of submissions, paid and free, but Yahoo employs editors who go out actively seeking sites to add to the directory.

As a result, the Yahoo! Directory contains a very large number of site listings, particularly in its topical areas, although its regional section has a lot of empty categories and fluff.

Although the directory has a huge database of listings, and they do occasionally accept free submissions of noncommercial sites, the Yahoo! Directory remains very heavy on the commercial side.

Intuitiveness - 15%

The Yahoo! Directory's category structure is reasonably intuitive in that its category and subcategory names make sense, and each category is arranged by subcategories that are appropriate for the topic. Additionally, the directory includes the use of @links and separates top subcategories from other categories.

However, it also employs some clumsy categorization that other directories, such as the Open Directory Project, have worked hard to avoid.

For example, some of its topical trees include a By Region subcategory, which creates an additional regional tree on top of its top-level regional tree, which also includes topical subcategories.

Along the same lines, the Yahoo! Directory includes several web directory categories, which might make it difficult for someone to find the web directory resource he may be looking for.

The directory appears to be designed to lead visitors to other Yahoo properties and, more than once, while I was trying to navigate its categories and subcategories, I found that I was no longer on dir. but was, instead, on I found that to be more annoying than helpful.

Quality - 14%

Commonly seen in older web directories, the Yahoo! Directory employs the sentence fragment model for site descriptions, and tends to be on the skimpy side, although many of its descriptions are very good.

I am finding more than a few site titles that use the domain name as a title.
Search the Family History Library's genealogy database, which contains millions of names from thousands of family trees. A project of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

In the above example, the actual site title could be either "FamilySearch" or "Family Search," but the use of the domain name as a site title is not found on the site itself.
Information about the For Dummies guides, a division of John Wiley & Sons.

The site title is "For Dummies."

However, for its large database, the Yahoo! Directory does not have very many bad links. I let Scrutiny run on it for about a half hour and it found fewer than five hundred links that it identified as bad, and at least three-quarters of those were time-outs, which are not necessarily bad links.

As a default, its search is not restricted to its directory database but uses that, along with Google results.

Usefulness - 15%

The size of the Yahoo! Directory's database pretty much assures that it will be useful as a web directory. As discussed earlier, its taxonomy is reasonably intuitive, although not without problems, and its site search includes Google results as a default.

While browsing the directory's categories and subcategories, it is too easy to find yourself elsewhere on and that is, I think, more self-serving than helpful.

Its regional tree doesn't have enough content to be particularly useful, although there is plenty of content in its topical categories.

Extra Credit - 3

The Yahoo! Directory is one of the oldest and most respected directories on the Internet. While it has more than its share of problems, many of these were the result of decisions made more than a decade ago, and difficult to change at a late date. The Yahoo! Directory may be a dinosaur among web directories, but it is an active dinosaur.

The Yahoo! Directory includes a suggestion board, which allows users to make comments and to suggest changes to the directory, which are frequently replied to by Yahoo! Directory staff, and which would probably be more productive if people would quit posting nonsense there.

Overall Rating - 77%

Upon an assessment of the Yahoo! Directory on June 20, 2013, I have rated the directory at 77%.


Although I have often come across comments suggesting that the Yahoo! Directory never accepts free submissions, I have had a few sites accepted through the free submission option, and even had one that was added by Yahoo! Directory staff without my having submitted it.

If I were to compare two dinosaurs, I would have to say that the Yahoo! Directory has far more life in it than the Open Directory Project.

While the directory did not fare as well on this review, as compared to other sites reviewed during the second quarter, as it did in the first, there is no denying that the Yahoo! Directory is an active directory, and one that should be on the radar of anyone who has a website to promote.


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