The Best Free and Paid PR Websites
. . . and When to Use Them
Publishing your press releases online can provide valuable inbound links, drive traffic and increase your chance of being found by the search engines.
.......It can also be a complete waste of time.
- Testing and experimented using many of the services and other ways of getting press coverage and, this is what we have learned:
- Make sure you have something that is newsworthy to say.
- Keep it under one page long. Never use a press release as a blatant promotion for your products or services.
- For important news get the copy written by an expert (we do this and there are reputable service providers too). Remember to put your contact details at the end of each press release
Using Press Release Websites
There are dozens of press release websites. Most have a free service with a premium upgrade. There are a handful of paid PR services which are head and shoulders above the rest. Our list is shown below, but before you look at it there are a few guidelines you should take into account. Only use PR sites that:
- have a Google Pagerankof 4 or above. Sites with no Pagerankwill give you no benefit or may even have a negative impact because they may have been blacklisted for spamming. You can check the pagerank at www.popuri.us
- are built to allow you to optimize your articles for the search engines using tagging, anchor text links, header tags, etc. If you don’t know what these are, look on the PR website for a statement about articles being optimized for search engines (SEO)
- don’t use NoFollowtags. For those who haven’t heard about Nofollowtags, they are inserted into website code to stop the search engine spiders following the links. If the spiders can’t follow the links in your press release, you get no benefit from having it on the PR website
The free press release sites below are listed in order of pagerank. Most of them have a free basic service and a paid upgrade. We have found that a high pagerankPR site doesn’t necessarily result in more traffic, but, and its a big but, the higher the pagerank the more valuable the inbound links.
Best Free Press Release Services
- Free-Press-Release.com– Pagerank5/ Alexa 3,547 – Not a great looking site, but it has high traffic and a good Alexa ranking. Also, you can place your banners on the press release submitted, pointing to your site. Only the paid service has better ranking and SEO benefits. Easy press release distribution for free, more features for paid accounts.
- PRLog.org– Pagerank5 / Alexa 16,551 – Ordinary and functional looking website, but it delivers results. Free distribution to Google News and other search engines. Allows inbound links and is optimized well for the search engines. Press releases can be scheduled.
- PR.com– Pagerank5 / Alexa 27,482 - Fantastic domain name, disappointing website. Free basic service. Two paid options of $199 and $499. Paid options include a full company profile.
- OpenPR.com– Pagerank5 / Alexa 42,088 – Service based in Germany started in 2004. Free submission and distribution.
- 1888PressRelease.com– Pagerank5/ Alexa 58,760 – Good pagerankand reasonable traffic. They allow active links. Their paid services gives you better placement, image galleries and permanent archiving.
- NewswireToday.com– Pagerank5 / Alexa 51,449 – Very poorly designed site which is difficult to read and navigate. All the usual free distribution tools, premium service includes logo, product picture and more.
- Pagerank4 / Alexa 17,995 – The main reason for including this service is it is one of the few PR distribution sites focused on Europe
- 24-7PressRelease.com– Pagerank4 / Alexa46,460 - Free press release submission with limited distribution for the free service. They allow active links.(Upgrade package $49).
- EcommWire.com– Pagerank4 / Alexa 107,600 - This fairly low traffic site is good for eCommercerelated press releases. You can include an image, three keywords and a link with anchor text. OK.
- TheOpenPress.com– Pagerank4 / Alexa 64,691 - Gives free distribution for plain formatted releases. Charges for HTML-coded releases.
- PressMethod.com- Pagerank4 / Alexa 66,727 – Very ugly site, but appears to get reasonable traffic. Free press release distribution to limited list. Have additional paid-for services which are not worth the money.
- Free-Press-Release-Center.info– Pagerank3 / Alexa 56,516 – Nice, clean looking site. Pageranklikely to increase with current traffic levels. EnablesPR submission and distribution. Includes one link with anchor text embedded in the article. Upgrading to Pro will give you three links, permanent archiving and more.
- I-Newswire.com– Pagerank3 / Alexa 69,619 - Free distribution to sites and search engines. Premium membership differs only slightly by adding in graphics.
Sites to Ignore ... Unless You Have Lots of Spare Time!
- PR9.net– Pagerank4 / Alexa 6m – Alexa numbers suggest there is a problem with this site
- PRbuzz.com– Pagerank3 / Alexa 212,213
- PRCompass.com– Pagerank3 / Alexa 75,237 - Distribute your press release with a free or paid version. Has Diggstyle voting
- PRUrgent.com– Pagerank3/ Alexa 80,402 - Some useful advice about writing press releases. Good looking site. One to watch
- Press-Base.com– Pagerank3 / Alexa 389,117 - Submit your release for free and get on their front page and the category of your choice
- TheMediaSyndicate.com– Pagerank3 / Alexa 115,910 – Free site that has been around for years. Poor pagerankand traffic
- ClickPress.com– Pagerank5 / Alexa46,078 – Cluttered, ugly site. Distributes to sites like Google News and Topix.net. An upgrade to their Gold level will also get you onto sites like LexisNexis.
The Paid Press Release Sites For Important News - The paid press release sites below are in our preferred order (as of the date of this re-writing Spring 2010). You should look at all of them to see which one best meets your needs.
- PRNewsWire.com– Pagerank8 / Alexa 7,508 – For our paid releases we tend to use PRNewswire. Not a great looking site, but it is the newswireused by the largest number of journalists. The annual subscription is $195 with additional pricing for additional exposure.
- BusinessWire.com– Pagerank 8 / Alexa 16,730 – Tends to be used by bigger companies often to meet their SEC full disclosure requirements. Prices on application.
- PRWeb.com– Pagerank8/ Alexa 9,822 -Good reputation for reaching local news sources so worth considering if you have a good story for a single region. Prices start at $80 and go up to $360 per release depending on the level of visibility you want to achieve.
- PRLeap.com– Pagerank6 / Alexa 55,935 – I have never used this service but some of our clients report reasonable results. Nice clean site. Price per press release - $49, $99 and $149 depending on level of service. Distribution to search engines, newswires, and RSS feeds.
Getting press coverage is one of the best forms of marketing there is. An article, review or mention on a third party website, magazine or news source is much more powerful and valuable than a paid advertisement.
However, it takes time and effort to get good coverage. This article should help you get started, but your ultimate goal should be to build personal relationships with the key journalists, bloggersand influencersin your niche.