Hi, fellow marketer!
When it’s time to expand your lead generation process or the sales department is hungry for more pre-qualified leads, we all have to go through the ordeal of searching for the new lead sources.
If you have the budget, you can use AdWords or Facebook Ads to generate an incoming lead flow for you. But what if you want to grow your lead generation process at no cost?
Why use web directories
Web directories are great for a few reasons – businesses listed there are already segmented by niche, size, geographic location, and other parameters; besides, many web directories will provide you not just with websites (which are already enough to generate a lead), but also with phone numbers and local addresses which you can use for cold-calling campaigns or postal marketing (don’t laugh now, this method still works).
Once we have a list of websites, we generate email lists using Bulk Domain search or individually using email finder tools.
Long story short: more directories = more business = more websites = more leads.
Web directories for lead generation
Note: this list consists of web directories focused on US businesses only, as the US market is usually the most desired one for sales and marketing campaigns.
- Yelp – one of the biggest directories of small US-based businesses on the web. If small business is your target audience – then start with Yelp. You will find thousands of beauty salons, real estate agents, automotive businesses, restaurants, home services etc.
- Yellow Pages – top web directory with tons of small US-based businesses. Along with Yelp, Yellow Pages is one of the biggest directories visited by 60 million users monthly. The only downside of its small-business focus is that the chances of collecting.
- CitySquares – this web directory has been on the market for over 10 years now. CitySquares allows you to easily search by cities and industries.
- Yellow Pages Directory – another decent source of small US-based businesses segmented by cities, counties, and states.
- Angie’s List – web directory that is focused on home services. If your target audience is companies within the plumbing, roofing, heating, electrical, or remodeling industries, then don’t hesitate to try Angie’s List for lead gen.
- Local.com – a good source of local businesses. The search results look a bit messy, but you can get used to it, considering the abundance of leads.
- USCity – one of the oldest web directories on the market. Search results are not just loaded as a list, but also highlighted on the map that is always on the right side of the screen. If you’re focused on local businesses, try USCity!
- Fave – another web directory that displays local businesses on a map. Try it if you liked USCity mentioned above.
- Merchant Circle – another good choice for local merchants and businesses. The good thing about this directory is that it also covers one-man businesses and individual professionals.
- Kompass – this directory is not focused just on the US, plus it covers more of medium and enterprise-level businesses. So if you need mid to large level companies, use Kompass to navigate you through this niche (pun intended)!
- Superpages – more like a Super-source-of-leads to us! Find local businesses, both small and medium, easily. Good for cold calling campaigns as phone numbers are displayed in a font even larger than the businesses’ names.
- MyHuckleberry – search not just for businesses, but also for products. Good source of leads if you need to find vendors or resellers of specific products.
- Combo Directory USA – this directory looks old-school, but it’s actually a good source of established small businesses that have been listed there for years and are still in the business. The industry navigation is very simple too.
- Insider Pages – another decent source of small US-based businesses. What sets it apart is reviews – you can see whether a business is still active by recent reviews.
- City Data – an informative directory with an interactive map, with the only downside being that it contains data on just a few niches – restaurants and schools.
- USA Citylink – web directory that is still alive and kicking despite being active since 1994. It doesn’t have many industries or filters, but it’s definitely worth checking out since it offers comprehensive data for travelers and covers businesses related to this.
- Best of the Web – another web directory focused on local businesses that are displayed on a map. Not the best directory there is, of course, but notable for providing extensive details per listing.
- Akama – an easy to use web directory not just businesses, but also products. Good for small niche searches.
- JustDial – a very stylish web directory of local businesses, that provides websites and contact information, and also prices, reviews and many other parameters that can be used to pre-score your leads. A mix between product and business directory.
- Official USA – a web directory that aggregates not just local businesses, but also federal institutions, radio stations, financial companies, media, newspapers and more. Has been active since 1997.
Web directories are worth a try when you feel like the usual sources of social networks and business websites have run dry. Or maybe you just feel like they’re not working for you, which is not uncommon. Now you can find emails of thousands of businesses, ready for picking. Good luck!
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