A posts directory is a web page that mainly houses a collection of editorial posts ordered by category. Users can integrate their posts (usually as text) into a posts directory through a web form. Post directory services can be free or paid services. They were used for a long time in link building.
When the Internet became increasingly open to private users in the late 1990s, it was usually difficult to find relevant information on specific topics. One of the reasons was the lower efficiency of search functions on the web compared to today. Back then it was not so easy to get relevant search results using Google search for a particular keyword. In order to meet the information needs of users and close a gap with popular search engines, successive directories of posts were established that answered questions on topics within a virtually unlimited subject area.
Due to a lack of competition, many post directories initially ranked highly in the SERP with their posts. At the same time, the directories became interesting for advertisers and a lucrative business model for their operators that quickly paid off. Apart from this, the directories were interesting especially for SEOs who placed the posts with relevant and strong backlinks there. Since the Penguin update, the importance of post directories for link building is almost nil.
How does it work
The post directories list, as the name suggests, different postings on various topics. There are even special directories for specific topics such as health or finance, but most post directories are almost limitless in the choice of topics.
Depending on the directory, registered users can post posts of at least 300 words. They can also add one or two external links and an image. After a review by an editorial team, the posts presented are in summary approved and published. In rare cases, post directories can publish posts without prior control.
Post publishing is free according to the business model of most post directories. Consequently, operators receive content free of charge and give one or two backlinks in return. Ads are placed alongside content, and in the optimal scenario you can make a profit from it, but you can cover server costs at a minimum.
The advantages and great disadvantages of the large post directories were and are the quality standards. After the post directories were used as backlink sources the quality of the articles or posts has dropped immensely. There are no high standards of content and language quality, even when directory editors first check content before publishing. The online encyclopedia Wikipedia took a different path. Since it uses mutual control. Even when many positions do not meet scientific standards, the community ensures that quality is reasonably maintained.
Importance for SEO
In recent years, post directories have been used as an easy way to generate backlinks. In many directories it is possible to link back to the original source of the content as part of the publication of a post. In this way, a variety of post directories were launched without regard to quality and only with the main objective of producing backlinks and making money from commercial promotion.
Google was aware of this development as a dirty link building method. Some link farm post directory backlinks were devalued and many post directories were banned from the index with the 2012 Penguin update. A logical reason for evaluating post directories as link farms was possibly in the very disproportionate proportion of inbound and outbound backlinks. Right now, having an editorial post in such a directory is not essential from an SEO perspective.
Matt Cutts even advises against creating backlinks via post directories in an official video.
Ideas for a new approach
The approach of an independent source of knowledge that draws on volunteer contributors was and is possibly interesting. Many users are searching the web for reputable alternatives to Wikipedia & Co. That such a post advisor can work without degenerating into a pure backlink farm can be seen on the many health and home improvement information websites that their customers get. income from commercial promotion, banners, etc. These in-depth posts show that high-quality posts are beneficial for ranking in the SERP.