In the pre-penguin era there used to be thousands of directories for submitting your RSS feeds. There was another good load of directories aimed at blog owners. As with 99% of the directories, they were only there for spam purposes. Luckily many of them are now closed. With those that still exist, is it really still worth submitting your site to?
You may scroll down to the up-to-date list but I’d suggest you read my “short” comment first!
To Submit or not to Submit?
There is only one valid purpose for the act of submitting a site to a resource and it is traffic. There might be another added benefit to the RSS directories and that is scrapebots.
If you’re brave enough to actually want the scrapebots to visit your site, go for it. Submit your feed to a few directories and you’re guaranteed to get on their radar.
Depending on the scraper sites you appear, there might be a small amount of traffic and an occasional link in it for you. A word of warning – you have to monitor the scrapers and make sure the sites don’t publish your content in full. If you’re running a WordPress installation, the easiest way to do it is to download the Yoast SEO plugin, set the feeds to “excerpt only” and set the plugin to add a “first found” link on the end of each feed entry.
That way the dumb scrapebots will keep adding links to your site on auto pilot. Not that those links will be of much value anyway. However, I’ve never understood the webmasters who are fretting about the scrape bots too much. There are other more serious things to worry about.
Which Directories to go for?
The main thing to remember is – there are feed directories and feed directories. Not all are born equal. Before you submit your RSS feed to a resource, answer a question: would you visit this resource if you were a user looking for information? For example, Icerocket. Yep, looks like a reliable resource, it allows you to build compilation feeds from your favourite blogs.
The other end of the scale – Wingee dot com. I’m not even providing a link because it’s not worth it. If you want to take a look at it, google the name and take a browse. It looks like a standard “SEO-friendly” directory and you instantly see that it’s been built with the submitters in mind. What you want to do is go for the directories that were built with the visitor in mind.
Another thing to remember is that Feedburner and Google RSS reader is not the only RSS client out there. Different people are using different services to compile their feeds. If you submit your site to directories that are used for this purpose, you will actually see some traffic trickling in. Not a big amount of traffic but then every visitor counts!
A good way to get a reality check on this or that feed directory is to check their recent feeds. If you see blogspot blogs, medical content or non-English stuff appearing on the list, you don’t really want to submit there!
Will I be submitting my new blog to these directories? I know for sure that I won’t be using the whole list but I will hand-pick a dozen or so directories that I think would add value.
Are There any Good-ones Around?
So after this short intro (it was intended to be short anyway) let’s get to the business end of it. The table. Yes there are a few active directories aimed at blogs and RSS feeds left in existence. I’ve updated the list and will keep an eye on it removing the dead ones and adding new ones as they appear. Don’t spend too much time on this task because this is what I call the low-end SEO!
Update, 31/10/13: I certainly didn’t expect to be adding new urls to this list but there’s a new guy in town and the value proposition looks promising. Check http://www.specificfeeds.com/. It allows you to create a custom version of your feed. The creator of this new service thinks that today’s feeds are too broad. The goal of SpecificFeeds is to create more precise information streams.
Disclaimer: this is not a recommendation. I do not suggest people submit their sites to these or any other directories. This list is provided for information only.
So, this is it. Were you expecting large sheets of data? Sorry to disappoint you. This couple of dozen urls was whittled down from a huge list of several hundred sites. Do you know a site that I should include in this list? Please let me know via the comments.