LookSmart Ups Basic Submit Price

The price of LookSmart’s “Basic Submit” service has been increased from $79 to $99. Basic Submit guarantees that a site will be reviewed within eight weeks for possible inclusion into the directory.

LookSmart previously had raised the price of Basic Submit from $49 to $79 in September, saying the increase was needed to cover its costs and share revenue with others offering the service.

“The $49 was a problematic price point, but at the $79, that’s where we can share something with our partners,” said Kristin Morse, LookSmart’s director of ecommerce, at the time.

Despite that rise, Morse now says that LookSmart determined it needed to raise the price further, and another increase could happen. “We still don’t feel that we’ve gotten the pricing right,” she said.

As for the “partners” that Morse referred to, these are search engines like AltaVista, Excite, iWon and MSN Search. They all use LookSmart’s information in some way for their results. They also allow their users to submit to LookSmart from within their own sites. In return, they receive some of the LookSmart submission fee. Until now, these partners have only offered the more expensive “Express Submit” service. Now, Morse says several should soon begin to also offer Basic Submit.

Regardless, I would recommend that most webmasters not bother with the “Basic” service and instead opt for “Express Submit.” Though double the price, the $199 fee gets you an answer within two days, rather than eight weeks. Many sites will probably find that getting listed faster (assuming they are accepted, and most sites are) will make up for the added expense in terms of traffic.

Registered non-profit sites can still continue to submit for free. LookSmart won’t message you if accepted or rejected, Morse said, but the service does now guarantee that all non-profit submissions will be reviewed within eight weeks. In other words, if you submit, your site should either get in within eight weeks. If not, it was rejected (and then you are free to resubmit).

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