Best Directory and Search Engine Web Site Trends Detailed in New Report from the Web Marketing Association

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New Web Marketing Association Internet Standards Assessment Report includes historical data derived from a decade of hosting Internet award competition, WebAwards, and provides best practices for directory and search engine web design. -- The Web Marketing Association, host of leading web site awards competition WebAwards, released the Internet Standards Assessment Report (ISAR) to help the directory and search engine industry learn to create more effective and engaging web sites.

"As the standard of excellence for web sites continues to increase, consumers (and WebAward judges) are increasingly picky about what they consider to be an effective web site," said William Rice, president of the Web Marketing Association, Inc. "Simplicity in design is a legacy of Google's success. The real Web development in search engines and directories is the part that never gets seen and is often taken for granted by users -- the back end systems."

The WebAwards competition judges directory and search engine web sites on seven criteria that combined create award-winning web sites:

  •     Design
  •     Innovation
  •     Content
  •     Technology
  •     Interactivity
  •     Copywriting
  •     Ease of use

Internet directories and search engines have been below the overall ISAR Index for the past six consecutive years.

These sites have scored below the 3-year criteria average in all categories judged other than ease of use, scoring the fifth lowest total score across all industries judged.

According to the ISAR study, ease of use is directory and search engine web sites' strongest point. Despite the fact that there is complex technology behind the scenes of search engines, they continually rank low in technology and innovation scores.

The 2006 WebAward for Best Directory or Search Engine web site went to Fusion PR for Best Specialty Search Engine.

Other past winners include:

  •     2005 Scirus for Scirus, the science search engine
  •     2004 Scirus for Scirus, the science search engine
  •     2003 Insight Interactive for web site
  •     2002 for

A complete list of past directory and search engine winners can be found online.

Companies and organizations wishing to have their directory or search engine web site evaluated against the ISAR Index and be considered for a WebAward, which can help boost a Web site's credibility and marketing efforts, can learn more at

To request your copy of the 2007 WebAward ISAR report, please visit:

The Internet Standards Assessment report and the 2007 WebAwards are sponsored by the following leading organizations: Burst Media, PRWeb, Misukanis & Odden, Small Army, SimpleFeed, ExactTarget, ad:tech conferences, NewsUSA, eComXpo, MediaPost's OMMA conference, TopRank Online Marketing, Creative Chocolate Printing Company, OTOlabs, Internet World UK, Search Engine Strategies, Webmaster Radio, Rovion's InPerson and eMarketer.

2007 WebAward Call for Entries
The Web Marketing Association is now accepting entries into its 11th annual international WebAward Competition. The WebAwards is the standards-defining competition that sets industry benchmarks that the Internet Standards Assessment report is based upon. The directory and search engine industries represent important categories in the WebAward competition, and the Web Marketing Association will again be honoring the Best Directory or Search Engine Web site of 2007. The deadline for entry is May 31, 2007 and the WebAward Web site is located at

About the WebAwards
Now in its 11th year, the annual international WebAwards competition sets the standard of excellence in 96 industry categories by evaluating Web sites and defining benchmarks based on the seven essential criteria of successful Web site development. The goal of the Web Marketing Association, sponsor of the WebAwards, is to provide a forum to recognize the people and organizations responsible for developing some of the most effective Web sites on the Internet today. Entrants benefit from a Web site assessment by a professional judging panel and the marketing opportunities presented to an award-winning Web site. For more information, visit


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