Are you looking to create a customized directory website for the doctors in your city? Maybe you’re an active food critic, wanting to put forth your information and reviews as a restaurant directory website. In any case, creating a specialized business listings website on WordPress is easy when done right.
Let us specify a use case for better understanding. Consider a directory website for architects in a city.
- Your website should aim to provide all the information a visitor would need, to help him find the required architect.
- This would involve displaying a brief overview about the architect, location information, images showcasing his portfolio, along with user reviews.
- The site should be interactive, it should allow the user to limit his search based on location or maybe base fees of the architect. Basically the directory site should provide means to filter search, based on some categories.
- Additionally, your site should also allow a visitor to post his/her reviews based on their experience.
Leverage the Features of a Good Theme
To go about creating such a website, start by choosing a theme which will help you. We recommend using the GeoTheme. The GeoTheme is a WordPress directory theme. Since the Geo WordPress Theme is so aptly designed for a directory website, it provides a number of features you would need, such as,
- Maps, with location markers: Add a business location, with a brief description of the place.
- Description and Reviews: Add detailed description of each place, with ability to accept reviews and ratings.
- Proximity Evaluation: Perform location-wise search.
- Places and Events as Custom Post Type: Create unlimited number of places and events.
- Created Paid Listings: Charge for listings and featured events.
Other alternatives you could choose are, Business Finder Theme or Glocal.
Customize your Theme to Suit your Needs
- Create Custom Post Types: Custom Post Types allow you to identify and organize a type of content. For example, for our architects directory website, we could create a custom post type ‘Architect’. This custom post type should contain information related to each architect, like the description and portfolio images. You could add additional fields to store information like pricing, contact information, etc.
- Create Custom Taxonomies: Custom Taxonomies can be used to group and categorize content. To provide an option for visitors to filter content, you first need to categorize it. Custom Taxonomies can allow for hierarchical categorization.
Provide Additional Features
- Membership functionality: Your customized directory website could offer membership benefits, this involves providing a sign-up and login module. You could use the default login functionality provided by WordPress or use a plugin like Members plugin, to control user roles and capabilities.
- Dedicated space for advertising such as special deals or banners: To provide advertising spaces as banners you could use the Useful Banner Manager Plugin.
- Payment Gateway Integration: If you plan to charge people for postings, or paid membership benefits, you need a stable payment gateway integrated to perform monetary transactions. If your theme does not provide for this, you can use e-commerce plugins to offer packages which can be purchased. For example, you could provide a limited number of ad banner spaces to be purchased in a month. Upon an architect purchasing a banner space, you could advertise for him/her in that space.
- Blog Pages for business news or related posts: You should consider maintaining a blog, to share news, upcoming events, and articles about the business your listing.
You are free to experiment and create your own features. Seeing how popular business listing websites are, you could make real money out of them too. Remember not to oversell though, your main aim should be to provide truthful and reliable content, to make your visitors happy 🙂 . Do let me know if you have any questions or suggestions with regards to building such a website. Leave your comments in the comment section below.