are lists of Internet resources pertaining to a specific subject
category and are intended as a resource for people who have a specific
interest in that topic. These lists consist of a collection of URLs of
related Internet resources and are arranged on a Web page by their titles.
The owners or creators of meta-indexes put a lot of effort into compiling
these lists and are eager to find new sites to add to them. They often
will list your site for free because they desire to have the most meta of
the meta-indexes—they strive to have the largest of the large indexes, and
more sites means a larger index. So if you come across a meta-index that
is associated with the topic of your site, feel free to ask to be
Meta-indexes are directed at a specific topic,
such as “Nova Scotia Bed & Breakfasts” or “Professional
Meta-indexes provide easy access to a number of sites on a specific topic,
and they are a great way to draw targeted, interested people to your Web
site. In addition, some users may rely on meta-indexes as their only
search effort. They may not use a search engine to perform a query on
Caribbean resorts, for example, if they know a certain meta-index contains
200 sites on Caribbean resorts. Where search engine results may show books
on Caribbean resorts, personal Web pages relating to family vacations at
Caribbean resorts, etc., experienced Web users know that meta-indexes will
only provide links to the Web sites of Caribbean resorts. Meta-indexes can
increase your chances of being found by people who are interested in what
you have to offer.
You may want to consider placing a banner ad
on one or some of the meta-indexes you find, given that the target
audience you want to reach will be the people using these indexes. Choose
carefully, though; you don’t want to buy a banner ad on a meta-index that
is not up to par and doesn’t provide you with the traffic are looking for.
Take your time and investigate the meta-index before advertising on it.
Does it appeal to the eye? Is it of good quality? Are there a lot of dead
links? Is it updated frequently? Does it have sufficient
Meta-indexes can be a great way to increase traffic
to your Web site. Word spreads quickly on great meta-indexes because they
are a great resource. Your target market will tell two friends and they
will tell two friends thus increasing traffic. In addition more people
will be adding links to your meta-index and the more links you have to
your Web site the more traffic your site will
Some of these meta-indexes have a
“Submit” or “Add your site” area; for others, you have to develop an
inclusion request e-mail and send it to the owner of the site. Even if you
are not sure if your site will be accepted by a certain meta-index, send a
request anyway. Meta-lists draw more traffic when they provide more
resources to their readers, so list owners may be fairly lenient on what’s
acceptable and what’s not.
When requesting a link to your site, send an
e-mail with “site addition request” in the subject area of your message.
Include the following in the body of the message:
To make your link stand out among the many
others listed, inquire about adding a prominent link or icon to the
meta-index page along with a short tag line, in addition to your company
name. If you provide the GIF and the HTML, the meta-index owner may be
happy to include it.
Once you have identified indexes that appeal
to your target market, determine whether additional opportunities might
exist for sponsoring or purchasing banner advertising on the site.
Meta-indexes that relate to your market are a great place to advertise
because they are accessed by your target customers. In addition
meta-indexes are a great place to search for other potential reciprocal
Keep in mind that the compilers of
meta-indexes are motivated by non-commercial reasons and are under no
obligation to add your site to their list or process your request quickly.
However, because of the banner-advertising revenue potential, more and
more meta-index sites have a commercial focus.
In addition to “free” meta-index listings,
there are also those that charge a fee. While the listing may be free
there may be a fee charged for placing a hypertext link within the
listing. If you are considering paying a fee to be included in a
meta-index consider the volume of traffic the meta-index receives, whether
the traffic is targeted and the cost involved in relation to the return on
investment. It may be wise to contact those already listed in the
meta-index to see if the listing has been a good investment for
Essential Links: Portal to the
Essential links to the Internet and the World Wide
Web—Essential Links is a portal to the Internet portal sites, news
headlines, search engines, Web directories, references, and
A meta-index of the various
resource directories and indexes available on the Internet.
The Webmaster’s Ultimate
Resource - A meta-index of the directories and essential sites.
The Virtual Library is the
oldest catalog of the Web, started by Tim Berners-Lee, the creator of the
Web itself. Unlike commercial catalogs, it is run by a loose confederation
of volunteers, who compile pages of key links for particular areas in
which they are experts. Even though it isn’t the biggest index of the Web,
the Virtual Library pages are widely recognized as being among the highest-quality
guides to particular sections of the Web.
WWW Meta-Indexes and Search
A Library of Congress Internet resource
Now that you know what a meta-index is, how do
you find one? You might be browsing on the Web and happen to come across
one. A better way to find meta-indexes is through the search engines and
directories on the Web.
You need to know how your particular search
engine of choice works. Most search engines have advanced search
capabilities so be sure to explore them. When you’re looking for
meta-indexes, we recommend you take your most important keyword and add an
extra word such as “directory,” “meta-index” or “list".
By adding one of these words in conjunction with
another word—for example, “travel” or
"speaker" (or whatever your most important keyword is) —you’re increasing your chances of
finding appropriate meta-indexes. Performing a search on “travel” alone
will return far less-targeted results. Looking for a travel directory
alone may not work for you. Why not? A search for a travel directory on
the search engines often means looking for all sites that contain the
words “travel” and all sites that contain “directory.” You should refine
your searches to achieve more accurate results. Some general techniques
using the words “travel” and “directory” as examples you can apply in your
search for meta-indexes are
Entering travel directory generally means: Look for all sites containing
the words “travel” or “directory,” but try to gather those sites with
“travel” and “directory” together.
Entering “travel directory” (with quotation marks) often means: Look for
all sites containing the words “travel” and “directory” next to each
Entering +travel directory generally means: Find all sites with the word
“travel” and preferably the word “directory” as well.
Entering +travel+directory generally means: Find all sites with both words.
look for information in different ways and allow different techniques to
be applied in order to narrow or broaden the search criteria. This
information can be obtained by looking at the respective search engine’s
help page.Many search engines and directories have or give you the option
to use an “advanced” search or search “options” page that presents you
with the ability to perform more detailed searches without using the
parameters outlined above.
I have included a couple examples of meta-indexes to check out.
Buzzle.com Travel and
Hotels and Travel on the
Bed and Breakfast Inns
my Web site at http://www.susansweeney.com/