How to Create an Online Business Directory in 5 Easy Steps


Starting an online business directory is relatively simple, but if you are unsure where or how to begin, this article will assist you in getting started. To know more check on

First step

The first thing you need to know about starting an online business directory is what your target market will be or what types of businesses you want to include in your new business directory.

If you already have a business, whether online or offline, you will already know your target market and can proceed to step two in this article.

However, if you are unsure of your target market, you must research. I would recommend starting a business directory about something popular that will earn you money in the future. This will gradually help your current business grow.

Here are some highly profitable niches for an online business directory that you could start.

1: RealEstate Directory

2: Directory of Travel

3: Directory of Online Dating

4: Vehicle Directory

5: Fashion Directory

There are many more, and you can find them by going to or and seeing what is popular on those sites or by going to Google and searching for keyword terms like “Hot Niches,” “Popular Niches,” or “Popular Business” you get the idea.

After deciding on a niche for your new business directory, you must buy or register your domain name.

Second step:

The most important thing is to buy or register the right domain name for your new online business directory, so make sure you get this right from the start.

A good domain name should be no more than two to three words long, contain the name of the niche and the word directory, and always be if possible; otherwise, go for domain if for the part you want is already taken and not for sale.

For example, if I were to launch a new business directory focused on niche real estate, the perfect domain name would be or However, all good domain names like this have already been taken, but they may be available for purchase if you visit the website.

If the domain name is unavailable for purchase, you could try inserting a dash between the two words. Check out or to see if they have been taken or not, and if they have been taken, see if they are for sale.

If you must use a three-word domain name, you could put something like your town or city name in front of the domain, such as… See if or is available.

Try, a great free online resource for brainstorming new domain names and determining their availability.

Once you’ve decided on a domain name for your new online business directory, it’s time to register it. Again, I recommend because they are the most affordable and provide the best services.

Third step:

Now that you have your domain name for your new online business directory, it’s time to find a hosting company. I’ve tried many, and the best I’ve discovered is, which owns. They’ve been around for a long time and have thousands of happy customers.

Fourth step:

Now that you have a hosting account for your new online business directory, it is time to start building it.

You could do this in various ways, depending on how much money you want to spend.

If money is an issue, I recommend hiring a PHP coder from a website like,, or to build a custom solution. This way, using an off-the-shelf PHP directory script, your new business directory will stand out from all the other cookie-cutter guides online.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with these types of scripts, and we use one for our own Link Directory, but we’ve gone a step further and had a custom template created for our directory, which has proven to be an excellent investment. is the directory script we use and recommend if you have a minimal starting budget.

Fifth step:

The final step is to promote your new business directory, which can be done with or without spending money.

I’ll list five free and five paid options below that you can use to help spread the word about your directory.

Free Alternatives:

1: Join online forums and discussion groups related to your new business directory and post an invitation to business owners to list their websites/businesses in your manual for free or at a reduced rate.

2: Related to 1, ensure you include a signature line linking to your directory in all posts you make in the forums you’ve joined.

3: Submit your business directory to other free online link directories by searching Google for the term Link Directory.

4: Link to your business directory from other websites you own or run. This way, search engines will find and index your directory.

5: Email friends or customers asking them to link back to your business directory in exchange for a link back to their website from your guide, if applicable.

Paid Alternatives:

1: Launch a Google AdWords campaign to drive traffic to your business directory immediately, but be cautious because if you don’t know what you’re doing with AdWords, you could spend a lot of money with no results.

2: Purchase paid links from similar websites or directories to your business directory.

3: For $299 per year, submit your business directory to the Yahoo directory. Being listed in the Yahoo directory will increase the credibility of your guide in the eyes of search engines and visitors.

4: Purchase offline newspaper advertising if your directory targets businesses in your area.

5: Purchase banner ads on other websites related to your business directory and negotiate a 6- to 12-month term because you can significantly reduce your overall banner advertising costs.

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