You can make your business listings, directories, best similar places, and classifieds websites go live quickly and affordably with these directory software portals.

Business directories and listing websites help consumers find the right product and services they are looking for. These directories help travelers, tourists, and the uninitiated find trusted businesses.

A few years back, developing and hosting such websites were daunting tasks. Not any more — as many software developers are now offering web apps of directory software.

But you can not just choose any of them without doing some background research.

In this article, we have researched for you to pick the portal that suits your business and budget. Read on to explore directory-making software and some popular names in this domain.       

What Is Directory Software? 👩‍💻

What Is Directory Software?

Directory software is a no-code or low-code approach to creating internal and external directories, listings, classifieds, product inventories, service inventories, and more. 

Developing an online directory requires expert developers who can work on the website interface, content, database, hosting, data security, and more. In a nutshell, building and managing just one business directory could break the bank. 

Directory-building web apps handle all the technical tasks and make directory development a cakewalk. For example, you use a drag-and-drop website builder to create niche listings. 

Most of such tools come with professional templates too. You can add your brand assets like color palette, theme, logo, photos, etc., and the website is ready in a few minutes.

The best thing about such applications is you can design, build, and launch hundreds of directory pages in a few hours. You only need to source business names, contacts, addresses, images, and Google Maps locations to populate the directory.

In short, directory-building apps have made directory creation and hosting a lucrative business opportunity for tech-savvy entrepreneurs who want to earn revenues from business listing, PPC ads, banner ads, promoted business content, eCommerce affiliates, and more.     

What Does Directory Software Do? 🏃🏻‍♂️

In a broader sense, a directory-building app automates all the tasks (except the content) you otherwise need to do manually. For instance, designing, publishing, hosting, and managing a business listing or classified ad platform. 

Some apps, these days, also offer you self-service business listing so that local and global companies can sign up for free, thereby quickly growing your niche listing website.

When you use directory software to create a business directory, you do not need to hire a web developer. You must focus on the marketing, sales, and business discovery tasks. Other crucial tasks that it handles are: 

#1. Business Directory Branding    


An effortless UI lets you upload business assets once, and the back-end program customizes a directory template the way you need it.

#2. Content Management

Its interface lets you manage directory content like businesses, shops, local attractions, members, newsletters, and more. 

#3. Digital Marketing

Some directory software offers exclusive online marketing tools like bulk emails, Google Ads, SEO services, etc.

#4. Data Privacy and Security

The big names in the directory web app business offer website security through SSL encryption, login authentication, etc. They also comply with local and international data privacy regulations like GDPR, California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), etc.

#5. Accept Payments and Donations

The directory-building applications integrate your online classified website with digital payments platform. Hence, you can place a payment and donate button on your listing portal to collect payments from patrons, donors, members, businesses, etc.

#6. Host the Website


You may bring your domain, but most business listing software asks you to host your online portal with them. Some make it mandatory. So, if you do not have a hosting provider yet, directory software can help you. 

If you are already hosting other online web properties with another hosting provider, then you may need to migrate your asset. Because hosting your business directory with the software provider mitigates compatibility issues.        

Essential Features of Directory Software 💪

We have considered the following features and functionalities for listing the best directory software your business can benefit from. You should also look for the same features when performing the research yourself.

#1. Multiple Directory Types

The portal that you choose must offer a comprehensive list of directory types. For example: 

  • Listing of businesses
  • Listing of products/services
  • Listing of promotions/discounts/coupons
  • Directory of local/global sightseeing locations
  • Listing of events
  • Classified ads

#2. Revenue Earning Opportunities

The directory software should also help you connect your online assets with Google AdSense, Ezoic, BuySellAds, Earnify, Nativo, etc., for advertising on your websites. 

Apart from web ads, the tool should offer affiliate marketing, business promotion, listing space sales, etc. 

#3. Content Publishing and Management

The UI for content management should not require coding or learning. Anyone should be able to upload business places and publish effortlessly. 

#4. Effortless Website Updation

The directory software developer should update the website in the back end without pulling the portal down for hours. 

#5. Collecting Payments


There should be a payment portal integration option for various online payment processors. If the software lets you connect the website with a few payment processors, try to avoid that.  

#6. Affordability

The subscription fee for a basic and intermediate package should not be costly. You are just starting the business, so revenue earning will take a while. Pick a tool that is affordable and offers all the required features. 

#7. Media Compatibility

The directory-building web app should support an array of media like videos, GIFs, images, SVGs, slideshows, and more. 

#8. Multiple Website Asset Management

Finally, the directory maker should support multiple online assets under one profile. If the tool also provides a dashboard or control center to visualize and supervise all the web properties from one screen, that is highly convenient.

Below, find some outstanding directory software that expert businesses and entrepreneurs use.  

Brilliant Directories

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Do you want to create business directories or membership sites on your own but do not know how to proceed? Brilliant Directories is here to help you with its 1000+ useful and effective features. Some of the highlighted features are:

  • Member management from the Admin area
  • Allow members to post articles, classifieds, events, and coupons
  • Searchable professional online directory
  • Collect automated payments from members and ads
  • Sell banner ad spaces for additional revenue
  • Promote future events to the members
  • Dynamic SEO for more visitors and better SERP rankings
  • Add your company logo and design elements for branding

This platform is so easy to use that you can launch your online directory within a few minutes and continue growing your business with recurring revenue. Choose a theme to get started with a website for local city guides, member communities, classified ads, real estate listings, and business directories.

Whether you are a developer or a novice, Brilliant Directories is ideal for you. You can access its source code or create the website with point-and-click settings.

Ideal Directories

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If you want to make money promoting local businesses and events, starting an online business directory website with Ideal Directories is a viable option. You do not need any technical or design experience to work on it. Its top features include:

  • Easy setup for launching the website in 24 hours
  • Sample sales scripts, flyers, and brochures for business promotion
  • Offers training and support for platform navigation and sales best practices
  • Provide professionally designed materials for sales and marketing

Moreover, it lets you set your price for the services you offer. You can also brand the directories with your logo and host them on your domain.


Directorist directory software

At Directorist, you get top-class WordPress themes suitable for your business directories. Now, you can choose your favorite themes from its range of collections. These themes are customizable and super responsive so that people using any device get the best experience.

Furthermore, these themes are user-friendly and receive regular updates to stay compatible with the current trends. It allows you to create powerful and personalized WordPress listing websites without any coding experience.


Templatic directory software

Looking for some stunning themes for your business directory websites? Try Templatic. Regardless of your industry, you can get suitable directory themes full of features and functionalities.

These themes are not only customizable but also put you in control of the design and colors. Additionally, you can include custom fields, categories, and post types in Templatic themes.


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When choosing a professional online directory software, eDirectory is one of the top contenders. With its assistance, you can create a sophisticated online directory and membership site with the least effort from your side.

It offers a complete set of features to build a stunning online directory website for any industry or niche. Setting up and launching your website on this platform is easy. It also lets you readily manage the website content with total control. The top features of eDirectory are:

  • Build directories for listings, classifieds, deals, events, ad banners, articles, and blogs
  • Integrated app builder for no-code Android and iPhone all creation
  • Visual template editor for creative and customized listings
  • The in-house development team for small visual changes to major workflow rebuilding
  • A rich library of plugins and availability of advanced features
  • Integrate with favorite payment gateways to get recurring payments easily

One can also monetize the directory and generate a recurring revenue stream by selling recurring subscriptions, generating leads, and showing ads.



MarketGrabber makes it easy for any business to launch an online directory for niche industries, non-profits, and local cities. This robust yet flexible software can be easily customized for your market.

Its responsive design offers full functionality from any device. Regardless of the location, website visitors can post and search. Businesses can import listings through administrative data entry or CSV files. Here, you can add videos, embed code, and graphics.

MarketGrabber allows organizations to host the website with them or on other compatible servers. It provides you with the complete source code to customize it according to your requirements. Additional features of this platform include:

  • A fully-customizable platform for niche-based unique requirements
  • Support for SEO with URL, metatags, H1 tags, and category
  • Enable admin approval for listing on the website
  • Add-ons for automatic social listing and other business-specific needs
  • Social media account integration on the directory
  • Including video with the listing through embedded code
  • Enhanced search and filter option for the visitors

If you want, you can use the banner ads on your website for additional revenue generation. Users can integrate this platform with Google Adsense or company advertisements. 

Online Member Directory 

Online Member Directory

If you want to stay connected with all the members of your organization, Online Member Directory is the right software for you. It facilitates swift and seamless communication with family members, staff, teams & others.

This application uses SSL for safe and secure communication. Hence, your data stays encrypted and password protected, far from the reach of hackers and cybercriminals. It has a talented team of artists who design your directory according to your brand identities, such as colors, fonts, and logos.

You can also decide whether the members can edit their profiles with customizable fields. Anyway, it will alert you when someone makes a change or opt for 100% administrator control in case you need more insights. Moreover, it lets you accommodate additional banner ads that help you cover the directory expense.

Online Member Directory uses CTRN mobile app to facilitate quick and effortless communication among the members. Also, it supports sending messages to all the members or a section of it for schedule changes, announcements, reminders, and more.

Final Words 👩‍🏫

Most consumers and businesses search for products, services, and vendors online. Hence, there is a void of business listings and directories for all industries. 

It is the right time to enter the business directory developing and hosting business since you can earn revenue in many ways from one website. 

And directory software makes your business set up easier and cheap as you need to sign up for any of the above tools. If you already have the content you want to publish, your business directory will be up and running in no time.

You may also be interested in premium WordPress hosting services to host custom business directories.