The WordPress directory is a very demanding niche, and it's not surprising. Directory websites have been part of the Internet for a long time and for a good reason. They provide a convenient platform where users can find what they want. It doesn't matter if you're going to find a place to eat, watch a movie, or find other services in a particular area.
Thus, choosing the right directory plugin to build a multivendor website is quite challenging, and it's easy to get lost. I prepared the list of tools that might be helpful for you on the path to your perfect functional business directory website.
Multivendor Directory Solution by Crocoblock is not a uniform WordPress directory plugin. It incorporates four advanced plugins featuring the functionality required for building a full-fledged multivendor directory website from scratch.
They are JetEngine, JetSearch, JetSmartFilters, and JetReviews. Their names are pretty self-explanatory, so even knowing nothing about Crocoblock, you can understand that each of these plugins will provide the tools for:
designing website structure;
adding advanced search;
incorporating filtering system;
configuring feedback functionality.
Crocoblock suggests at least eight types of multivendor directory websites you can build with their plugins.
However, I am almost sure that your fantasy goes far beyond these options. And the plugins are also flexible enough to adapt their functionality to the particular needs of your clients.
Here are all the essential features you need for creating a multivendor directory website:
Also, you get the tools for structuring the content with Custom Taxonomies & Terms by assigning categories and tags and the possibility to configure posts relations, organizing them hierarchically.
Apart from basic things, you get:
The price starts from $91 per year for one website. It is quite reasonable in comparison to competitors. Considering the functionality this solution provides, Multivendor Directory Solution might be one of the best WordPress directory plugins in terms of quality and price. If you want to launch more than one website, choose the Unlimited subscription and pay $186 per year. Crocobock also offers a 30-days money-back guarantee.
The core of the Business Directory Plugin is free; yet, to extend the functionality, you can buy extra premium modules, depending on the requirements. The primary uses for this plugin are listing businesses, local services, or other businesses in a particular area.
Business Directory Plugin is flexible enough to build an entire multivendor directory website or organize listings and attach a directory to your main website.
The Business Directory Plugin offers the essential features relevant for all WordPress directory plugins, such as customized form fields, tools for organizing listings, built-in reCAPTCHA to protect the directory from spam, and the possibility to integrate payment gateways.
If you want to organize the directory to generate recurring sales by incorporating membership, the Business Directory Plugin also provides a specific featured-level module. With it, you can provide unique content to a particular group of your visitors.
Moreover, the plugin even lets you differentiate the payments according to the tiers and features you provide.
Other useful premium functionality you might like:
You can buy every addon separately for $69.99 (for a single site) and $139.98 (for multiple websites). Yet, it is more reasonable to purchase a combo pack: $199.99 for a single website and $399.99 for up to five sites.
The Elite package with more advanced features and unlimited websites will cost you $599.
The name of the GeoDirectory plugin is also self-explanatory. It allows you to build a location-based business directory (e.g., TripAdvisor, Foursquare, Yelp, etc.).
GeoDirectory features a user-friendly interface, so submitting the listings to the directory will be a no-brainer even for novice users. Like many similar plugins these days, it offers a basic level of functionality. But if you want to add more features or settings, you will need to purchase some of the premium addons available.
Point the listings on the map and allow users to search for necessary businesses, locations, etc. Using GeoDirectory, you can integrate payment gateways, design multi-location directories, and showcase event listings.
First, let's look at some of the most powerful built-in features:
The prices are as follows: 4-months membership will cost you $99 (billed every four months); for six months, you will have to pay $129, and a yearly subscription costs $199. The Lifetime license is $995.
Plugins such as Sabai Directory come with fully interactive maps. You can add listing information that will be displayed when you move the cursor over a marker. The search results can be updated when the user drags the map, and the autofill function means that the user enters less text. You can always return to the listing view.
Thus, Sabai Directory is an excellent tool for building location-based multivendor directories and displaying data on a convenient interactive map.
Sabai Directory is a very flexible and highly customizable plugin that allows setting custom fields, configuring taxonomies, defining user roles, adding view filters, and much more. On the one hand, Sabai is not for a novice user; still, you can learn the functionality quickly, having only some basic coding and WordPress backend knowledge.
Sabai is an excellent instrument for designing community-fueled directories because it offers a whole set of tools for user interaction and actions. For instance, they can vote for the best restaurants in a specific geographic area, mark the most helpful reviews, upvote comments on listings, or report undesirable content.
It has a long feature list, but the most prominent are as follows:
Also, Sabai Directory allows to incorporate advanced search and filtering with autosuggestions and provides a separate dashboard for the users to see their feedback, bookmarks, etc.
Sabai Directory costs $29 (regular license); if you want Sabai to be the part of the end product that you will sell, the extended license ($150) is required.
Connections is one of the powerful WordPress directory plugins to build almost any multivendor website or directory. Connections Business Directory is lightweight, highly configurable, and demonstrates high compatibility.
Connections also come with templates, which you can use as a layout for your listings. If you don't know where to start your multivendor website design, you can use one of these templates.
Connections provide extended privacy settings, where you can configure privacy levels for any custom field, for instance, to hide business phone numbers or some internal messages.
To display your listings on the frontend, you only need to insert a shortcode to the directory page. There are also custom shortcodes so you can customize the way your business directory looks like.
The premium extensions list also include:
It is worth noting that the Connections Business Directory plugin is helpful for developers who want to incorporate it into some specific system or adjust for a whole new directory. Thus, there are plenty of APIs to try. The core plugin is also free here; you can access some free features, like toolbars, logins, and birthday emails. But other advanced addons cost $5-$15.
Advanced Classifieds and Directory Pro (ACADP) is a handy tool for building a powerful multivendor website. It provides a set of unique features that simplify building an advanced directory. You will find customizable settings and layouts within the plugin to facilitate listings showcase and multifunctional widgets to build a multivendor website without a line of code. They are WordPress-compatible and convenient enough even for beginners.
The ACADP widgets are designed explicitly for displaying listing-related information. They also include tools for developing understandable navigation and transparent content structure.
To organize it, you will have unlimited categories and category levels to make your content visually appealing. ACADP also provides various custom fields to enhance the listings and add all the required attributes (e.g., text area, radio, select list, input box, etc.). The plugin allows you to add as many custom fields to your categories as you need.
The settings include an unlimited location set up to define the country/region and any location scenario (country-city-street, etc.). Embed Google Maps and get an even more powerful directory with ACADP. Backend management is also available, so you can achieve the ultimate control over all your settings to keep the website running smoothly.
Provide advanced search/filtering using the corresponding widgets and set up the search by various parameters, such as keyword, category, location, price, custom fields.
Other premium features are the following:
ACADP offers three subscription options: you can pay monthly/yearly or get a lifetime license. The plans are:
To get more websites (up to 5), you will need to pay more accordingly. ACADP also offers a 30-day money-back guarantee for all plans and a 20% discount on the lifetime plan.
After you complete all the basic settings, your site is ready to incorporate ads. A convenient visual builder allows you to customize the main menu and widgets. For example, you can add Search, Categories, Recent Ads, List of Locations to widgets.
Apart from that, you can use other useful Web 2.0 Directory features, such as:
Web 2.0 Directory is compatible with WPML and Contact Form 7. It provides RTL Support, CSV, and image import.
After installing WooCommerce, you will be able to manage orders and products, set up additional payment gateways available, make scheduled sales, create sales reports, provide refunds to users, etc. The prices are $39 for a regular license and $280 for an extended license (if you want the user to pay to use the end product).
You can provide users with tools to manage their personal listings: delete them, manage prices, add them to favorites, and report abuse for other users’ listings.
The dashboard provides you with email notification functions. You can also monetize your listings and integrate the PayPal payment system provided by the plugin. Moreover, the plugin is also compatible with almost any topic, so you don't need to install a theme specifically for the business catalogue. In addition, provide your viewers with a grid or compact viewing functions and many sorting and filtering options. Although managing the directory itself is pretty simple on the backend, managing the interface list for individual users is easy.
Directorist also enables essential configuration functions for an external user. You can even enable automatic email notifications for the visitors’ convenient communication. Using the Directorist, you can enable the listing expiration date and the list update functions.
In addition, it ensures that old listings don’t overload and clash with your site over time. Using the payment functions of the Directorist, you can include a section of favorite lists that will appear on top of other listings. In addition, Directorist also allows you to use custom slugs for various list pages.
You can change the slugs for categories, tags, locations, specific listings, and more.
Apart from that, Directorist allows including feedback ratings and comments modules. Finally, the plugin is very well optimized and compatible with almost all themes.
The key features are:
Directorist provides two alternatives (yearly and lifetime) that include priority support, premium themes, and 20+ advanced extensions.
Within the yearly one, you can pay for:
The lifetime plans are the following:
They include all the yearly features, lifetime updates, and priority support.
The primary advantage of this plugin is the possibility of creating several directories. You can incorporate the indexes created for different purposes on the same site using shortcodes and configure them separately.
Name Directory allows you to embed a search on top of the default WordPress search engine. Thus, you can combine the rest of your site with your WordPress Directory in an accessible way. It simplifies navigating and managing your indexes, glossaries, or whatever. Name Directory also allows you to customize the directory you built and apply a variety of layouts.
There is a possibility to apply several customization options to your directory’s functionality. You can show/hide title, text excerpt, add or remove search functionality, set the number of columns to display, define the directory subject, and provide a “read more” link.
More features are as follows:
It is a free plugin, so the feature list might seem limited. Nevertheless, it can perfectly work as a basic tool for the newbies, or in case you need to attach multiple directories to your website.
That’s it for my review of directory plugins to build a multivendor website. These plugins provide sufficient flexibility, so you can use them for different purposes. They help to build a more organized index for your site, configure and manage it easily.
Build any directory — real estate, restaurants, employees database, and others conveniently.
If you have already used some of these plugins, feel free to share your experience and thoughts with me.