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Thread: New Directory Launched Today!

  1. #1
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    Default New Directory Launched Today!

    When Outdoors Directory first began back in 1996, our site consisted of little more than our online directory of businesses serving the Alaska outdoors market. Over the following 16 years a site developed around this small nucleus, consisting of nearly 160,000 pages of Alaska outdoors-related content. Though we have become the largest site on the Internet focused exclusively on the Alaska outdoors, we have not forgotten our roots. Over the last year, our staff has spent countless hours updating the listings in our directory and, finally, giving the entire database a major face-lift, adding numerous features to make it more appealing and user-friendly both for our advertisers and our members.

    We launched it today.

    If you are a business owner, we’d like to offer you a free listing in our Directory. CLICK HERE to send us your business name, a brief description of your business, and a phone contact so people can reach you. We’ll take care of the rest. There is no charge for this. If you want something more, consider becoming a Premium Advertiser in the directory. In addition to the above, we provide your own landing page here on Outdoors Directory, complete with direct clickable links to your website and email, a graphic ad, a map showing the location of your business, placement near the top of your category in the directory, and listings on relevant pages on the site. A listing in our Directory not only connects you directly with Alaska’s largest online outdoor user group, it increases your site’s page rankings with the major search engines. CLICK HERE for our rates, which are among the most competitive in the industry. We have intentionally kept our rates low, to make them affordable for Alaska small businesses.

    If you are a member of the site, the use of our Directory is completely free. We believe we offer the most comprehensive directory of its kind on the Internet. If you know of an Alaska-based business that is not listed here, by all means CLICK HERE to let us know and we will add it to the Directory.

    We hope you find the Directory to be a valuable asset for trip planning, or simply for general reference as you go about your activities in the Alaska outdoors. Whether you’re looking for an air charter, a trip-planning service, a raft rental, a charter fishing trip, a cabin rental or a guide, you’ll find it here on Outdoors Directory.

    CLICK HERE to begin your search through the new Directory! You're really going to enjoy it.

    Have a great summer!

    -Admin

  2. #2
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    Default outdoors orgs?

    Very nicely done. Quite a gesture to offer a free listing to any biz; that's a smart way to grow it into something that will shortly be very complete on many subjects.

    Have you considered a category for Alaskan Outdoor Organizations?

    SCADA and KRSA both spring to mind right away; I bet they'd both like to be listed. It'd be cool to see a collection of all of them, with hot links to their contact email and phone numbers too.

    I bet that free listing like that you're doing will probably increase a good practice in the Internet industries, that of publicly using an email address that contains a domain name that has their own web site. That always impresses me more than something anonymous like ProFishingGuide@hotmail.com.

  3. #3
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FamilyMan View Post
    Very nicely done. Quite a gesture to offer a free listing to any biz; that's a smart way to grow it into something that will shortly be very complete on many subjects.

    Have you considered a category for Alaskan Outdoor Organizations?

    SCADA and KRSA both spring to mind right away; I bet they'd both like to be listed. It'd be cool to see a collection of all of them, with hot links to their contact email and phone numbers too.

    I bet that free listing like that you're doing will probably increase a good practice in the Internet industries, that of publicly using an email address that contains a domain name that has their own web site. That always impresses me more than something anonymous like ProFishingGuide@hotmail.com.
    There's lots of room for them under "Organizations".

    -Mike
    Last edited by Michael Strahan; 05-03-2012 at 19:44.
    LOST CREEK COMPANY: Specializing in Alaska hunt consultation and planning for do-it-yourself hunts, fully outfitted hunts, and guided hunts.
    CLICK HERE to send me a private message.
    Web Address: http://alaskaoutdoorssupersite.com/hunt-planner/
    Mob: 1 (907) 229-4501
    "Dream big, and dare to fail." -Norman Vaughan
    "I have climbed my mountain, but I must still live my life." - Tenzig Norgay

  4. #4
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    Thumbs up oops

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Strahan View Post
    There's lots of room for them under "Alaska Hunting and Fishing Organizations".
    Darn it, sorry, you had it right there, and almost at the top of the page showing categories. You're right and I'm blind. Again, nicely done new site, and also for the nice launch of another valuable resource on the outdoors here. Not to mention a free service for every Alaskan outdoors company - well done.

  5. #5
    Member Rod in Wasilla's Avatar
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    Where's the rating system you said would be included with the new Directory? I can't seem to find it.

    -Rod
    Quote Originally Posted by northwestalska
    ... you can’t tell stories about the adventures you wished you had done!

  6. #6
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod in Wasilla View Post
    Where's the rating system you said would be included with the new Directory? I can't seem to find it.

    -Rod
    Hello Rod,

    The new Directory we are using does indeed include a rating system, however we have decided not to use it. My apologies if I indicated otherwise somewhere. Here is how we came to that decision.

    The rating system only allows positive recommendations, an issue we completely support. It allows members to rate a business by one, two, three, four or five stars, with five stars being the highest rating. It also allows comments from the person posting the rating. While we really like the ability to offer positive ratings, we see two problems that were, to us, deal breakers.

    1. We know that the user-submitted comments area would be abused by a handful of members. This is an unfortunate reality of any public venue, and we have to recognize it. The workaround is to have all user-submitted comments come to us for approval before posting, but then we lose the real-time posting that our members have grown accustomed to in the forums. And it has the potential to add significantly to our workload. Someone has to review and approve / disapprove all those rating comments. We believe that the delay involved in reviewing and approving user comments would just frustrate those who took time to submit their recommendations, and are not seeing them posted promptly. Second, there is currently no way to keep a business owner and his friends from posting comments and ratings that pump up his score. So we would end up where our reputation system has gotten to in the forums. The reputation system started out as a great way to show new members who the reliable posters were, but it was quickly hijacked by people who used it to "rep" the class clowns instead. We are concerned that the rating system in the new Directory would be similarly hijacked, and that the ratings would be meaningless.

    2. We are concerned that some of the smaller operators out there who offer top-notch products or services would not get very many ratings, and would therefore come across as inferior to larger operators who deal in large volume and get lots of good reviews. There's nothing we can do about that, and it could have a negative effect on some of the smaller operators when the rating system effectively says they are not as good at the larger outfits. I don't know how we could work around that.

    We looked around online at other sites that use rating systems and discussed this issue with our IT folks, and concluded that a rating system, while appearing to be a useful tool, does not really deliver on its promise of highlighting the best operators. So for the time being, it is our hope that folks will use the Directory to make a preliminary list of commercial operators, and ask about them in the forums. This gives members a chance to directly interact with past customers, which has proven, historically, to be among the best forms of advertising anyway.

    Hopefully this makes sense?

    Best regards,

    -Mike
    LOST CREEK COMPANY: Specializing in Alaska hunt consultation and planning for do-it-yourself hunts, fully outfitted hunts, and guided hunts.
    CLICK HERE to send me a private message.
    Web Address: http://alaskaoutdoorssupersite.com/hunt-planner/
    Mob: 1 (907) 229-4501
    "Dream big, and dare to fail." -Norman Vaughan
    "I have climbed my mountain, but I must still live my life." - Tenzig Norgay

  7. #7
    Member Rod in Wasilla's Avatar
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    It makes sense. I don't necessarily agree, but I understand.

    BTW, you may have mentioned it in other places, but this post that you made back in November is where I read that you would be including the rating system in the new directory. I don't know, but if it's not going to happen, you may want to edit it to remove that reference (and any others?)... just to avoid any more confusion.

    -Rod
    Quote Originally Posted by northwestalska
    ... you can’t tell stories about the adventures you wished you had done!

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