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It took me 80+ hours to comb through 2000+ startup resources and bring you the fullest list of websites where you can submit your startup or a pet project to date.
Read on to find out why I decided to conduct such in-depth research and how it can take you or your business to the next level
or jump to the list of websites now (available in Google Sheets and Airtable).
As a web developer with a marketing background, I know the difficulties other devs and up-and-coming tech companies face. Putting your business on the map at a low cost is no small feat.
Since one of the growth hacking ways is organic growth on search engines, I initiated extensive research to help me and other devs bootstrapping their way to success by taking their first link-building steps and getting exposure on high-traffic websites.
Here are a few reasons to consider submitting your project. By doing so, you could:
- Get press coverage
- Boost your website's organic traffic
- Promote your product or services for free
- Find early adopters or cofounders
- Get early feedback on your prototype or software beta features
- Pitch your business before launch and gain early user traction
- Score extra funding in the development phase
- Find networking and partnership opportunities
- Build online visibility and brand awareness
If at least one of those made you nod in agreement, you're in the right place.
How I Came Up with the Startup Directories List
I am a member of a few SaaS communities, and one question that repeatedly appears in many groups for new startups is, "Can you share a list of websites where I can launch and promote my startup?" .
Is clicking hundreds of URLs and deciding if you should publish your startup there your thing? Didn't think so. That's why I chose to help founders save hundreds of hours by rethinking the way lists of startup directories are created.
How Did I Conduct the Research?
But they still need more critical information, like traffic potential or domain authority, to name a couple. So I decided to take things further and reviewed each startup directory list published since 2010.
Most resources on startup directories available online come from 2019 at best and lack valuable data or filters to narrow down the list. About 30% of links on existing lists of startup directories lead to closed, abandoned, or pivoted websites.
It sounds like a massive waste of time founders can't afford. So I decided to propose a solution for new startups out there. I manually went through every platform to ensure you never landed on a dead or irrelevant website.
Analyzing 99 crappy websites was worth it if there was a chance to get your startup at least one excellent backlink.
Here are the criteria I followed when manually crawling websites to submit your startup:
- Is the website active? Does it publish new content regularly?
- Is it relevant for digital startups and side projects (including games)?
- Is there a direct way to create a listing or share content for publishing?
- Would I publish my project there?
- Is there any value for link building or brand awareness implied?
After gathering raw data and deduplicating it, I ended up with 2,016 websites. The next step was to exclude the ones with low DA and SEO potential.
To enrich my brand-new list of startup directories, I took the following data points into account:
- How long does it take to submit your startup?
- Is the directory free or paid?
- How difficult is submitting your startup here?
- Moz Domain Authority (DA)
- Traffic volume
- The top country in terms of website traffic
- Website type (media, directory, forum, etc.)
- Website's core topic
- Trust and Citation Flow scores
The icing on the cake is the startup directory filtering. With this list, you can filter all the data according to your business needs and focus on directories that fit your product criteria.
Things to Consider Before Submitting Your Startup
After conducting market research, creating a team, and building an MVP comes the most challenging part of the startup lifecycle: promoting your SaaS product online, successfully showcasing your services to your audience, and getting the first users.
This list of websites to submit your startup is made to help you bring new products in front of early adopters or investors and improve your website authority by increasing exposure.
Before you promote your company in the media, let's cover the basics so you can decide which submission websites are a good fit and which are worth skipping.
What is Website Authority and Why is it Essential?
Google algorithm is an extensive, complex beast. There are likely thousands of ranking factors, and the list keeps growing.
It would help if you gained Google's trust (aka authority) to get more search traffic in the long run. And one of the most effective digital marketing techniques is link building.
If you are bootstrapping your product, a question like this will arise: "Can I just pitch my business everywhere or buy backlinks for pennies from high-volume resellers?" . Huh, if everything were that simple, SEO agencies wouldn't exist.
To get your domain authority (DA) growing, you need to get featured by websites with a higher domain authority than yours. DA is a metric defined on a scale from 0 to 100.
- Compare your company website DA with a target website DA using free website authority checkers by Ahrefs or Moz. If the target website DA is higher than yours, that's a go-ahead signal to submit your startup there.
- Another vital factor to consider is topical similarity. It means you want to get backlinks from websites that are relevant to your niche. If you sell a SaaS product for developers, backlinks from cooking blogs will get you nowhere, despite a higher DA and decent traffic volume. While there's more to it, this should suffice to choose from business media and startup ranking directories featured in our list.
Top Websites to Submit Your Startup
Here is a sneak peek of the startup directories that made it to our list. The following platforms should give you an idea of the quality I kept in mind while creating the directory list. Links to the complete list are available at the end of the section.
#IndieHackers Indie Hackers is a collaborative community that brings tech business founders together. SaaS companies and B2B entrepreneurs share success stories and growth insights here. A startup owner like you can learn much about marketing new products and reach the target audience by getting your project featured on Indie Hackers.
Chances are you don't need an introduction to the #1 go-to website to publish a startup or a side project. In case you do, Product Hunt is a digital platform where you can find the top new products and businesses. Share and geek out about the latest software, mobile apps, websites, hardware projects, and other creations with like-minded people.
If you plan to submit your startup on Product Hunt, get ready to spend some time preparing for a launch. This How to Launch on Product Hunt guide by the PH team should help you with that.
Startup Stash Startup Stash is a startup directory of tools and resources for entrepreneurs. This platform has everything you need for your startup liftoff: from investors and product development software to launch insights and showcasing opportunities. Startup Stash is also the most upvoted service on Product Hunt.
Starter Story StarterStory is a startup directory platform interviewing successful entrepreneurs and providing insights about launching products and running a business. Each post covers how entrepreneurs kick off their projects, build visibility, acquire users or investments, and deal with daily challenges. Have a startup story to share? StarterStory is an excellent place to do so and get feedback from the community.
F6S F6S is a global community of 16,000 enterprises and startup projects. Their service connects new startups and companies with early adopters, accelerators, angel and venture capital investors. On the F6S platform, you can also find jobs, grants, partnerships, and exposure opportunities. They offer help to get your startup and side projects up and running.
Here are a few more great directories for new startups from the list:
🚀 The complete list is available in Airtable and Google Sheets below. Choose the one you prefer and make it yours!
You can get a copy of the list and reuse it however you want. Just make sure to cite me if you are going to republish it.
How to Save Time Publishing New Startups
After you are done using the filters and identifying the best directories to feature your startup, you should end up with about 20 websites.
The next challenge is preparing a perfect pitch and other info you will attach to your listings and company profiles. Here's what you need to prepare in advance to save time on retyping the same things over and over again:
- Website URL
- Your Logo
- Your Location
- Number of Employees
- Target market segment
- Information on your venture/angel fundraising achievements, if any
- Approximately 3-5 screenshots/images of your products
- Product video (Not necessary across all platforms)
- Founding year
- Founder(s) name
- Founder(s) bio
- Both brief & long descriptions (create about three copies of each for variation)
- Who's the product for / What problems it solves
- What makes your business different from competitors
- Social media handles
- Pricing details
- 600-2,000 words article or press release about your product
As for the last point, chances are you're not thrilled with writing different copies for multiple websites. Instead, you can use tools such as Writesonic to assist with copywriting or hire content writers on Upwork.
Some websites request even more business information, but these are the most common points. Have it ready before you go through the list.
Despite the substantial amount of time saved on gathering, cleaning, and enriching the list, you still need to invest 5-10 hours reviewing the list and submitting your startup information. Here is a better if you have an extra $100 budget to save a hassle.
Here is a step-by-step guide:
- Create a Google Drive folder with all information about your company.
- Create a copy of the prepared list and save it with all the filters applied.
- Hire a virtual assistant on Upwork or Fiverr for $5-10 per hour.
- Share access to the folder from Step 1.
- Monitor the performance.
Tip: Add an extra column into the spreadsheet with your list where the freelance assistant will place submission URLs for you to track.
How to Track Results after Getting Featured
Below is the list of software and KPIs to keep an eye on after submitting your business:
- KPIs: Domain Rating (Ahrefs) or Authority Score (Semrush), Referring domains, Backlinks, Keyword Rankings
Free service: Google Analytics
- KPIs: Traffic volume and Conversions from Organic and Referral sessions.
Now all you need to get your startup's initial organic traffic and awareness momentum growing is to find the right words for your perfect pitch and write down all the essential info about your business.
Let's do a quick recap of how to publish your project using this directories list:
- Get your copy of the startup directory list.
- Filter it according to your website's DA, topic, and other values.
- Prepare your startup pitch and other essential info about the company.
- Organize files from Steps 1, 2, and 3 in a Google Drive folder.
- Hire a freelancer to post info from Step 3 on websites from Step 2.
- Track results for 2-3 months. Your traffic, DA, and rankings should improve.
The last step is to leave a comment below when your product is live. 😉 I wish you all the luck in the world!