How to Create a Directory Website in WordPress

Many people ask, “What is a directory website?” The response may vary, but basically, a directory website is a site that lists businesses or other websites in a particular niche that provide various products or services. People in need of these services will check out directories to find out the best options they have in that subject or/and region.

The next question you’ll need to have answered is, “how do I create a directory website in WordPress?” There are many reasons why most people go for WordPress to create any kind of website. It is one of the most user-friendly content management systems, with themes and plugins that give websites myriads of functions. You can create your own directory, even with your ZERO web coding experience, by following the instructions described in this piece. You don’t need to hire a web coding expert for that.

Related: Best Directory Website Templates

Follow the steps bellow to build your business directory website:

Step 1: Choose a Domain Name

Godaddy for domain

The first step in creating your directory website is choosing a domain name for it. The name should describe your brand. Ideally, it should also be short and easy to remember. For instance, your directory website could be listing the best restaurants in Coral Gables, Florida. Your domain name could be something like ‘coralgablestoprestaurants’ or something more creative but equally descriptive.

Your next task is to choose the extension to follow the domain name. The most popular extensions include .org and .com. Seeing as most directories will be location-centered, you can go for country-specific extensions. If you’re in America, you could choose .us, .au for Australia, and .uk for the United Kingdom. The country-specific extensions come in handy when you need to restrict your directory website to the audience within one particular country.

After choosing a domain name and extension, the next step is registering it. Popular domain registrars include GoDaddy and Namecheap. Alternatively, you could simply register the domain name with the web host you choose in step 2 below.

Step 2: Select a Web Host and Hosting Plan

Hosting plan

This is one of the most delicate steps. If you want to reap the maximum benefits from your host, you should go for the one with the best hosting plan options, excellent uptime, and around-the-clock support.

Warning: Beware of hosts who promise a 100% uptime rate. Go for those that offer 99% to 99.99% uptime rates.

The best choices for web hosts include Siteground, Hostinger, HostGator, DreamHost, and A2 Hosting. Comparing the hosts before settling on one is very prudent. You should know what your preferred one offers that the rest can’t.

When choosing a hosting plan, you can go for one that’s optimized for WordPress. This option gives you a pre installed WordPress account that’s optimized for speed and security. What’s more, most of these plans will guarantee automatic backup services for your site. Should anything happen to your site and lose your data or content, the backup service should be able to quickly restore your website.

Step 3: Choose WordPress for Your CMS

Why choose WordPress to create your site? WordPress is responsible for more than a third of the planet’s websites. Therefore, it is the most popular content management system (CMS). Other benefits include:

  • You can install WordPress and get your site in full functionality within a few minutes.
  • You can download WordPress and install it at zero cost on your self-hosted account.
  • It is user-friendly. You can figure your way around it quickly.
  • It is highly customizable. It avails many themes and plugins that give you many functionalities and designs to work with.

Step 4: Choose a Directory Listing WordPress Theme

Directory Listing WordPress theme

Choosing a theme takes all the heavy lifting from your hands. All you need to do is find a business directory WordPress theme with all the features and elements you’d need for your site. One of the best themes you could choose for this is Classima. It comes with multiple features and functions that allow you to edit them extensively to look however you want. Classilist is another best classified ads WordPress theme to make your directory listing website.

Classima has multiple page customization options, custom fields, a store facility, a live chat function, multiple payment options, and many page and section layouts. Check out Classima on ThemeForest.

If you wan to make current WordPress website to directory listing website so Classified Listing Pro a considerable advantage as you create and manage your directory website. It facilitates easy image resizing with uploads, which improves site speed. It offers massive control over inappropriate content reporting, registration, contact forms, listings, currencies, categories, locations, and many more features. With all necessary plugins, You will get review and schema WordPress plugin with classima theme. You can enable milti criteria review in your listing details.

You can make existing website to a directory website using directory WordPress plugin. If you search directory plugin in WordPress directory you will get lots of quality plugin to build directory listing website.

If you need free theme, Here is the list of best Free Directory WordPress Theme

Step 5: Customize the Structure of Your Site

Before you consider your site complete, you will need to dedicate some time to your pages and other elements. Even though top themes, such as Classima, come with premade pages and sections, you’ll have to choose from the available variations and customize them. You have to choose the number of columns, header variation, footer variation, and menus that you want.

Color and font variations are also available, so you can choose the combinations you prefer. All you need to do is familiarize yourself with the admin dashboard, and customizing your site will be easy.

Step 6: Add Images and Directory Entries

How to create a directory website in WordPress

As you add directory entries, you may need to add images and descriptions. The details you may need to include for your entries include location, pricing, ratings, and other relevant information. Images are good for giving users an impression of what to expect. They also play a massive part in SEO and the possibility of having rich Google snippets. Call-to-action buttons on each directory are a great way to convert visitors into buying customers.

Step 7: Monetize The Website

There are a few ways through which you can earn from your directory website. You can earn commissions from bringing customers to the businesses in your directory. After your site has gained popularity, businesses can start paying to be listed on your site.

You can also place banner ads in various locations to earn from the traffic on your site. Nevertheless, you should be careful not to cram too many ads on your pages. Having too many risks making ads a distraction and reducing the appeal and professional appearance of your site. Classima offers designated locations for placing ads, so your site will still look clean and user-friendly.

Step 8: Promote/Market Your Site

Making your website popular is a vital step, especially when it’s new. You can get started with social media marketing. You can also create social accounts for your site on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Having blogs on your website draws visitors, especially when they’re optimized for good search engine rankings.

Alternatively, you can use Google Ad Words and other Google Ad techniques, such as YouTube ads, to get users who are likelier to buy into your services. Classima offers a Contact Form and MailChimp so that you can launch and manage re-marketing campaigns.

Bottom Line

These steps save you from having to hire expensive web coding experts to create your site. Apart from saving the money, you get to create precisely what you’ve imagined by being more hands-on. We hope you’re feeling confident about launching a directory WordPress site of your own now. Go ahead and be a master in your niche!

Editorial Staff

Editorial Staff at RadiusTheme is a team of WordPress experts lead by Mamunur Rashid. We have been developing WordPress Themes and Plugins from 2016, Also creating various WordPress tutorials.