An article directory is a website that hosts hundreds of articles on various topics. When your articles are published in directories, people interested in your subject matter will have the opportunity to read them, and if they find the material useful they will then be able to visit your website in search of more information.

5 Benefits of Using Article Directories

• Article directories tend to be established businesses, so they do very well with ranking because the search engines love businesses that have been around for a long time.

• You are able to increase the number of quality links your website by including the details links at the end of your articles.

• Article directories can explode your traffic thanks to large established in house traffic.

• Most article directories are free, but even those that charge are more cost effective than pay-per-click as well as many other forms of advertising.

• Your article will be reaching potential customers for months and even years to come.

Before submitting material, research article directories at ALEXA, a free service that provides traffic metrics, search analytics, demographics, and more for websites. It takes time to prepare quality content, so you want to make sure that you pick article directories best suited to your market. Also, your reputation is important to you, so you want to align your business with other quality partners.

Here are the things you should look for:

• What is the ALEXA page rank? This is a good indicator of the popularity of the site.

• Look at the traffic grid – this will tell you if the traffic is consistent.

• Carefully review the audience demographics. This is especially important if your target audience is in the U.S. because several of the directories are operated out of India and their audiences are primarily foreign. (I looked up a directory the other day and found the top ranking audience to be Uganda; in fact the U.S. was nowhere to be seen on the ranking list.

• Take a look at the Google page rank; this will give an indication of the quality of the links the site will attract.

• Check the reviews see if there are any negative comments. Reviews from current or previous uses will help with the decision-making process.

The use of article directories continues to grow in popularity. Some website owners see it as a quick and easy way to attract customers, but this is only partially true. The importance of providing quality content cannot be stressed enough as a prerequisite to attracting and retaining visitors.

Author's Bio: 

Marquita lives in Maui, Hawaii and her professional background includes a successful 20 year sales and marketing career as a "road warrior" traveling the world promoting the Hawaii, followed by seven years as award winning coach working with new entrepreneurs building a home based businesses. Currently she is indulging her passion for writing by growing a lifestyle blog and writing a book, while continuing to provide training and support to new entrepreneurs.