1. Is the software within your price range? There are so many costs to think about when starting a business (an online business). With a very quick search of Google, yahoo, bing you will find that business directory software ranges from 50$-1500$. Begin by narrowing it down to the ones within your budget and then ask the questions below.
2. Is there a live demo to try? This is more important than you might think. Many great ideas come to a halt simply because you buy software only to find out that it does not do what you thought it would be. So first Try the demo!!!
3. Can you create free listing on the packages? Even though the purpose of your business directory might be to make money and get people to pay to list with you, the number one way to increase traffic to your business directory is to offer free listing packages. This way you will get more users, more visitors and more chance that your businesses will want to upgrade to better packages.
4. Can you customize listing packages to sell your businesses? Of course you will want to create one or more upgrade packages for your businesses to purchase. Check to see that your web directory software allows you with some of the choices. Some features that business might pay for include: logo and photo uploads, business highlighted, higher ranking in the search results, homepage featured and etc.
5. Is it easy for new businesses to register to list with you? The beauty of an online directory is partially in its automated functionality. Check to see that it is easy for a new business to register, and also is the software you are buying allows you to review listings before they are added.
6. Is the software optimized for search engines? This is sort of behind the scenes information that is in fact very important. A good business directory will make sure that your listings are indexed in a way that is search engine friendly.