Looking for responsive, modern Business Directory layout ideas for your association website? We’ve got you covered. Adding a Directory to your website is an excellent way to provide value to your members. In this article, we have pulled together some easy to recreate Business Directory layout ideas to get you started.
- Benefits of adding a Business Directory
- What is a Business Directory?
- Business Directory plugin demo
- What is the best WordPress Directory plugin?
- 9 gorgeous Directory design ideas to inspire you
Adding a Business Directory to your website has tangible benefits for both you & your members!
Chambers and professional associations receive thousands of inquiries every year, and when people call the office or request information about local businesses, staff can quickly search the Directory to specifically refer members only. Offering a Directory listing as a benefit to your members gives them an edge over the competition.
WEB SITE LISTINGS
Listing members in a searchable, online Directory gives them the benefit of a free hyperlink to their own site, as well as a mini web page that can be updated and personalized to their Business. Chambers and business networking sites tend to average a higher number of hits per month, giving your members increased visibility in the local community.
CROSS PROMOTION MARKETING
Enabling front-end editing for your members lets them keep their listing up-to-date, plus provides opportunities for you to amplify member promotions. As well, members can cross-promote upcoming news & events from your organization on social media sites which can be exponentially valuable. Be sure to include social media links to your Business Directory to make social campaigns easier for both staff and members.
What is a Business Directory?
A Business Directory is a collection of Business listings, usually grouped by category or membership level. At a minimum listings include Business name, address, phone, email and usually a link to the owner’s website. Typically a Business Directory is added to a site as a resource for site visitors and to make it easier for members to connect and do business with each other.
There are a variety of plugins in the WordPress Repo that make it easier to create, organize and display a Business Directory on a website.
9 gorgeous Business Directory layout ideas to inspire you
How to create engaging Business Directory Layouts:
Easy to read
Make it easy for visitors to navigate thru Business listings. Highlight even or odd listings to make it clear where one ends and the next one begins. Use large headings to make it easier for viewers to skim thru the page. Be sure to activate alpha-search for the visitor who knows exactly what they are looking for and wants to get there asap.
Easy to connect & cross promote
Make it easy for your members to find each other. Adding features like keyword search, alpha search, search or filter by category, give your site visitors a variety of options to find and connect with your members. Including direct links to the member’s website and social media pages creates cross-promotion opportunities.
Easy to navigate
Create category pages that only display listings from a specific category. Link these pages directly to your site’s menu so visitors can click on exactly what they are looking for. Or add a complete list of all Business Directory categories right to your directory page. You never know, someone might discover a connection they didn’t know they were even looking for. It’s always good to have the option to explore!
Keep it consistent
Create a default logo or use your organization’s logo for any member listings that have not submitted their own logo. This keeps your Directory page on-brand and looking neat and tidy. Limit the fields displayed on your Directory page. Since each member has their own single page listing on your site, there is plenty of room for additional information there. No need to clutter up your Directory page.
Make it fun
Keep your Directory page fun and engaging by adding color or even a slight motion element. You don’t want to completely distract your visitors with bells and whistles, so remember a little bit goes a long way.
What is the best WordPress Directory Plugin?
The beauty of WordPress is that there are plugins to fit just about every project. Finding the best Directory plugin depends on the type of Directory that you are developing. Is your goal to start the next Angie’s List? Make sure to include a review feature! Are you building a local restaurant guide? You’ll want to find a directory that has options for both categories and subcategories so you can highlight all the delicious details.
The Directories featured in this article are used by organizations that offer paid memberships and help promote the interests of small businesses or groups of professionals in a local area. For example, business networking groups, professional associations, merchant associations, chambers of commerce, restaurant guides, etc.
Recommended features to help you choose the best Business Directory plugin for your association:
- Searchable listings automatically created in Directory.
- Online payment feature.
- Payment tracking option.
- Business owners can link to their own website & social media pages.
- Option for members to update their own listings.
- Business owners can submit events to your community calendar.
- Shortcodes and widgets for displaying listings anywhere on your website.
Perfect for Merchant Associations, Professional Associations, Chambers of Commerce,
Business Networking groups, Visitor Bureaus, Community Arts Councils and more.