The 2nd service ever launched by Google, Google Directory, has now been shut down. Many webmasters ask why this happened and if DMOZ listings will be worth less now? Here come some conclusions from SEO Specialist. But first some background info about Google’s directory.
Why did Google launch a directory?
Back in 2000, directories had been around way longer than search engines. Directories were a natural way for people to find information. It was easy and straightforward to find a category and explore the listings in a specific sub-directory.
Google new search engines and leading competitors such as Altavista was still considered
‘new’ and ‘innovative’. By launching a directory, Google was able to compete and improve the way people used to search back then. Google used data from Open Directory Project (ODP), a Netscape project, and applied ranking of the listings in the directory.
Open Directory Project only use alphabetic listings, still today.
Why did Google shut down Google directory?
Possible reasons why Google decided to shut down their directory is low usage, negative ROI and a way of indicating to webmasters they are not very keen about directories.
The last years, a large amount of trusted link directories have been downgraded by Google and SEO Specialist believe many directories are today seen as manipulative by Google. However, there are still quite a few useful and non-manipulative directories around, even if high quality article submissions are a preferred method over link directories.
Google don’t recommend Yahoo Directory any more, but still refer people to DMOZ. So there is at least one directory ‘approved’ by Google.
Some say DMOZ is dead and don’t approve new links. That is simply now true. Yesterday, SEO Specialist was also included in DMOZ. So we are a happy team of SEO specialists at work today.