Is Domain Call A Google Ranking Factor?

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Remember the early days of the web?

You might invest throughout the day chatting with your good friends on AOL messenger while you played solitaire on Yahoo video games. And after that your mommy picked up the phone to telephone, and you were kicked off the web. Good times.

In those days, if you were doing some shopping, there was a good chance you were doing it on a website with a precise match domain (EMD). For example, if you required a canine collar, you ‘d most likely wind up on a website with an address like www.buydogcollars.com.

In those primitive days of search engine optimization, it was common for business to put their precise target keyword expression right in their domain URL.

Unfortunately (or maybe luckily, depending on how you feel about EMDs), scammers and bad stars took advantage of this, snatched up many of these domains, and linked them to low-quality websites.

So, what holds true today? Does your domain have an impact on search engine result?

Let’s take a more detailed look at the dispute.

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The Claim: Is Domain Call A Ranking Factor?

Having a specific match domain used to be a big offer.

In 2010, CarInsurance.com sold for $49.7 million: still the most costly domain purchase of perpetuity. So plainly, someone valued domains with that keyword.

It was (and in some cases still is) common for individuals in the SEO industry to promote for EMDs. The claims around them normally being that they immediately produce reliability and create a competitive edge.

However keep in mind those bad actors we discussed in the last section? Eventually, Google got smart to their keyword-stuffing URLs and changed its algorithm to discount them. But that’s not to state your website’s domain name does not impact SEO.

The Evidence: The Impact Of Domain On SEO

There is a great deal of mixed details about domain and their impact on rankings.

There’s no question that domain played a role in rankings at one point.

In a 2011 Web Designer Hangout, Matt Cutts, a software application engineer on Google’s Search Quality group, acknowledged the role EMDs played in the tech giant’s search algorithm.

Nevertheless, he likewise specified:

“And so, we have been thinking of adjusting that mix a little bit and sort of turning the knob down within the algorithm, so that offered 2 different domains it wouldn’t necessarily help you as much to have a domain with a bunch of keywords in it.”

And simply one year later, in 2012, Cutts tweeted that low-quality exact match domains would get lowered visibility in search engine result.

Finally, in 2020, Google Webmaster Trends Expert John Mueller exposed keywords in domain no longer play a role in determining online search engine results rankings.

Responding to a concern if keywords in domain names effect rankings during an Ask Google Webmasters video, he stated, “In other words, no. You don’t get a special perk like that from having a keyword in your top-level domain.”

However this doesn’t suggest that domain are unimportant. They’re simply not direct ranking aspects.

Find out more about Google Ranking Factors in our 2nd Edition ebook.

Our Decision: Your Domain Name Is Not A Ranking Factor, But Is Still Important

Now that we’ve established that domain names are NOT a part of your total search

engine rankings, SEO experts can simply ignore

them, right? Never. Your option of a domain can be a crucial aspect of your UX and public image. Your domain name should generally be the most recognizable element of your company. Often that’s not your service name but a specific brand or trademark.

You may want to think about subdomains or even different domains for various residential or commercial properties. If you offer products that resellers carry, this can help your clients find you more quickly.

Using keywords in your domain doesn’t help in terms of search ranking; if not done correctly, it could even injure your SEO.

However, if your branding is greatly focused on a particular service or product, consisting of a keyword in the domain could assist users comprehend what you have to do with at a look. A carefully placed keyword might likewise help bring in audiences likely to transform.

Don’t be afraid to utilize a keyword if it’s extremely appropriate or part of your branding.

So, here’s the TL; DR: Your domain name doesn’t directly affect your Google ranking however offers opportunities for smart web online marketers to show their brand’s values and create more favorable user experiences.

For more aid picking a domain, have a look at Roger Montti’s advice.

Featured Image: Paulo Bobita/Best SMM Panel

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