In The Netherlands, there is an extremely famous website called “startpagina.nl“. It’s a website that does very little other than listing a bunch of links on very specific topics, managed by editors for each category. Yes, we know directories in the rest of the web too; but in The Netherlands these are actually quite unique. A large portion of the backlinks for most domains are comprised of links from “start page directories” like startpagina.nl, and they have a great deal of impact on the Dutch (and Belgian!) SERPS.
There are literally thousands of other directories very much like this. Some are general like Superstart.be; some are very specific to a micro-niche.
Now, can this work in the American SERPS? Is this an outdated method, or can it still work? We think the relatively weak link profiles in the Netherlands and Belgium allow these kind of websites to still have an impact; but honestly, we don’t think this is still viable in the US or the UK. Some high-level directories might still be effective; but it should always be a very small part of your linking profile if you ask me!
What do you think? Do you use these type of directories?