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How to get your site into DMOZ (Netscape Open Directory)

How to get your site into DMOZ

Everyone talks about getting their site listed in the Open Directory Project, better known as DMOZ, but not everyone knows what to do about it.

Here’s some help.

The Open Directory Project is probably the single most important internet directory. Its listings are used by Google, and by many other search engines and directories, all over the internet.

DMOZ is an entirely volunteer edited directory, where every site is examined by an editor for suitability. To get a listing in DMOZ, is to have several legs up, in the race to the top of the search results.

The first step to a listing, is to check the various directory categories, and find the appropriate one for your site. Be very thorough here, as submitting your site to the wrong category can result in very long waits, and possibly even rejection.

When you have narrowed your target to the most appropriate category, go to it, and click on “add URL”. Be absolutely certain to read the instructions very carefully. They are not merely a suggestion. They are an absolute requirement. Be sure to submit just your home page to only one category. Multiple page or category submissions will likely be treated as spam, and your site rejected.

You will be asked to write a brief description of your website. This is not the place to be flowery and biased. Be as objective as possible. If the editors think your description is too promotional, they will certainly change it on you. Your site may even be rejected entirely.

Your site has finally been submitted. Now what?

Since the website submissions are accepted on a first come, first served basis, you wait. The waiting period can last anywhere from one week to six long agonizing months. Whatever you do, don’t decide to resubmit your site. At best, your submission will be moved to the back of the line again. At worst, your site may be rejected.

In the meantime, you won’t hear from DMOZ one way or the other. Keep checking their site each week for results. Keep updating and adding content to your website. The editors will like your site a lot better, and your chances of approval go way up.

Be sure you have no pages “under construction”, as the editors will reject any sites that aren’t ready for prime time.

If you have an “affiliate sales” site, be absolutely certain your site contains several pages of useful articles for your visitors. A site simply consisting of links and banners will almost always be rejected. Good relevant content is a must.

If you can’t stand the wait, you can contact the category editor about your site’s status, directly through their Feedback link. A better route, however, is to ask a polite question on the DMOZ public forum.

You don’t have to be registered to read the forum, but you must register (free) to post a question. As always, be sure to read and follow the posting guidelines.

Happy submitting.

It’s well worth the effort!
Guest Blogged by Wayne Hurlbert

“Daily roller derby commentary from a business perspective”

Wanna GuestBlog on the Search Engine Journal? Email me at

Category SEO
SEJ STAFF Loren Baker Founder at Foundation Digital

Loren Baker is the Founder of SEJ, an Advisor at Alpha Brand Media and runs Foundation Digital, a digital marketing ...

How to get your site into DMOZ (Netscape Open Directory)

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