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Hypenated or not hypenated... that's the question!

Discussion in 'White Hat SEO' started by businessbira, Jun 20, 2009.

  1. businessbira

    businessbira Power Member

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    Hi, I've always had this amletic doubt (it's a good question actually)

    Do domains like www.yoursitename.com (no hypens) rank better than domains like www.your-site-domain.com (with hypens)?

    I would say yes, I'm 80% sure, but glad to hear what you guys think based on your knoledge and experience...

    Thanks
    bira
     
  2. lokiceo

    lokiceo Registered Member

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    Yeah, hyphens in the domain are penalized, though hyphens in sub-domains and directories are not.
     
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  3. Grandslam

    Grandslam Senior Member

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    I'm not sure if lokiceo is right on this,

    i remember when i first got into website building that this website builder/assistant called sit€ build it said that i should first find a good, keyword targeted hyphenated domain name, and i actually checked some of their client sites and sure enough they were dominating their targeted niches via their reccomended seo strategies..

    g00gle them - site build it - im pretty sure thats what theyre called.

    hope this helps

    GS
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2009
  4. Frankie4Fingers

    Frankie4Fingers Power Member

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    From my experience, I avoid as much as possible hyphen in domain name. They are better than a non-hyphen domain only if you are going to buy traffic from Adwords and you don't not plan to have organic traffic.

    Keep in mind that a domain with an exact keyword with not much competition could boost you on page 1 of the main SEs without much effort than having basic on site SEO.
     
  5. squelsh

    squelsh Regular Member

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    Generally domains with no hypens do better (root domain). As mentioned separate everything else with hyphens.

    Having one domain is not going to give you an instant penalty - having more than two is likely to cause you more problems than its worse but I wouldnt say a penalty or ban.

    There are several other reasons not to 'hyphenate' your domain;

    If your domain is home-insurance.com and I own homeinsurance.com (wish I did) I will be able to outrank you easily enough.

    If your domain is home-insurance.com and you tell me to look up your site I could
    a) forget about the hyphen when typing in the domain
    b) Google it and find homeinsurance.com at number one and visit them

    Also it doesn't look half as good as non-hyphenated.

    Ranking wise you can get away with a hyphen if you're not trying to build a brand or anything like that. Generally though, I always try and avoid it where possible.
     
  6. boo blizzi

    boo blizzi Regular Member

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    im researching this very topic (although its an old thread - i used the search function...noobs take note) and Matt Cutts says that google doesnt penalize for hyphenated domains/urls...anyone care to weigh in on this from experience?...i dont see how if u cant get the exact search keyword for ur domain name and then add a word like: "exactkeywordnow.com", "exactkeywordonline.com", etc is better than: "exact-keyword.com"?
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2010
  7. Dark Knight

    Dark Knight Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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  8. mikie46

    mikie46 Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    If that was true i wouldnt be ranking #1 for colon cleanse keywords in Google with a hyphenated domain name. Your theory is squashed.
     
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    Last edited: Sep 14, 2010
  9. mikie46

    mikie46 Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    All of the above is speculation. Can you show me a document from Google stating your findings about Hyphenated domains?
     
  10. boo blizzi

    boo blizzi Regular Member

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    well i have seen ur proof and read what matt cutts has said so im not gonna worry about the hyphens anymore...i guess it all matters how much seo work u actually do to rank for the keyword
     
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  11. mikie46

    mikie46 Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    At least from where im searching, in AU, out of the top 4 results for my keywords, 3 of those domains are hyphenated. In the US i believe i may be second on the list but still, there are at least 3 hyphenated domains in the top 4 results.

    I will say that my domain is at least 2+yrs old and iv help the #1 spot for more than 8 months. Only recently has my domains bounced between #1 and #2.
     
  12. boo blizzi

    boo blizzi Regular Member

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    so what about having the keyword in the url instead of the domain name...does it hold the same weight...like mysite.com/keyword as opposed to keyword.com?...im asking cuz that means i will have to buy a shit ton of domains for every keyword i want to target...it also means i have done some very wrong things from an seo perspective thus far with my sites
     
  13. MadMarc

    MadMarc Newbie

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    Mikie46, I'd love to send you a PM about those documents. Too bad I'm too much of a newb on the boards to send PMs or post urls (in code tags) :/
     
  14. oxonbeef

    oxonbeef BANNED BANNED

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    My take on the matter is that non hyphenated domains were registered first and that
    is why the other person took the hyphenated one. Therefore giving the unhyphenated domain owner
    age advantage and a head start with their SEO campaigns. I've seen hyphenated domains outrank
    unhyphenated domains, SEO doesn't rely on one factor alone
    I believe that if all factors were equal between two sites domain age would over rule the hyphens.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2010
  15. boo blizzi

    boo blizzi Regular Member

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    yeah but that doesnt mean the registrar knows how or wants to do the necessary seo to rank the site...just think about people that get the .com first so u have to get the .net or .org...they will all rank depending on the amount of seo/backlinks done on the site...
     
  16. MadMarc

    MadMarc Newbie

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    AFAIK having the KW in the domain name is better, because it's closer to the beginning of the URL. Read that somewhere, would have to do a search to confirm that tho. It's about Keyword prominence, maybe you'll find something about that.
     
  17. MadMarc

    MadMarc Newbie

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    About the hypens: use them for long tail KWs. better results from big G.
     
  18. ForeverNever

    ForeverNever Power Member

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    I am siding with the "hyphens are not penalized." I have been a huge proponent of hyphens due to experience. I've had no trouble reaching #1 for 3/3 of my hyphenated domains so I would never discount a domain name and switch keywords because of it.
    Posted via Mobile Device
     
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  19. Satan Claus

    Satan Claus Regular Member Premium Member

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    Hyphens in domain names are not penalized according to Google.
     
  20. oxonbeef

    oxonbeef BANNED BANNED

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    Well the thread was only about hyphens but as you broached the subject.
    .net = network
    .org = organisation
    .info = information
    If you are publishing a marketing site using those domain extensions
    and you are not part of a network, you are not an organisation or you
    are marketing rather than supplying information or at least portraying to you are abusing the domain
    extension, If I know that Google certainly does and will penalise you for it.
    Not saying that you cant rank for those extensions I've had great success with all extensions but my sites have mirrored the genre of the extension.