It is worth submitting your site to some directories, including paid ones. There are two reasons to submit to directories. First, you stand to gain text links that help with your SEO. Second, some directories will also send you traffic.
Aside: Several people who’ve read this have written to ask me questions regarding directories. While I’m glad to lend a hand, you should also consider buying an hour of my time. You’ll get to ask me as many questions as you can fit into the hour, and I’ll give you the answers you need to improve your SEO.
For example, if you’re unsure of the quality of some directories you’re considering submitting to, we can talk it over and analyze their quality. You also get a transcript of our conversation or mp3 recording so that you can review what we said at a later date and apply the advice when you’re ready. And to top it off, I guarantee your satisfaction. If you aren’t satisfied, just say so and I’ll refund your money, no questions asked. Now, back to our regular programming…
Text links from outside sites indicate to the search engines that your website is a quality one. It’s as if the owner/administrator of the other website says, “I know this site and am vouching for it.” Additionally, the anchor text will help indicate to search engines what the site is about. In other words, the blue underlined words determine what keywords your site (or page being linked to) is relevant for.
Second, if you sign up with well-maintained and professional directories like Yahoo, you’ll find that some visitors will come to your site through those links. It won’t be much, typically, but if you can get some extra traffic and perhaps a few leads or sales, then why complain, right?
For more information, consider reading which directories are worth submitting to.