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SEO - How Important Are Domain Names Currently?

Discussion in 'White Hat SEO' started by The Doctor, Nov 9, 2012.

  1. The Doctor

    The Doctor Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    I know this has been talked about before but I'm not sure what the CURRENT state of the issue is. Lets say I want to rank for "board certified plastic surgeons" and I own boardcertifiedplasticsurgeons.com. How helpful is that to me compared to if I just had board-certified-plastic-surgeons.com?
     
  2. Smeems

    Smeems Regular Member

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    As a rule, anything with more than one hyphen looks spammy. Try and avoid it - as it barely gives you the EMD benefit.

    Speaking of which, the EMD benefit has been toned down for some countries. Not completely, it's not dead or any bullshit like that, and for some countries since the EMD update I swear I've seen EMD's have a bigger impact (Australia, I'm looking at you). But, mainly for the US and UK, the power of an EMD has been scaled down a bit.

    Personally, I've not relied on EMD's to rank for about 2 years now. Unless I can hold of an exceptional EMD for a reasonable price - and by that I mean 1 or 2 word exact matches with no hyphens - I'd much prefer to rank for a brand rather than an overly long or spammy domain.

    To directly answer your question: board-certified-plastic-surgeons.com - avoid that like the plague. boardcertifiedplasticsurgeons.com - eugh, I['m sure you can do better then that.
     
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  3. The Doctor

    The Doctor Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    so the fact that its 4 words is pretty bad even though its an exact match?
     
  4. Smeems

    Smeems Regular Member

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    It might still have an effect - but that effect will be reduced because of the latest update and is certainly not a pre-requisite to ranking for that or any keyword.

    Not to spout some white-hat/Rand Fishkin bullshit here, but when it comes to a URL like that, is it even easy or nice to read for a user? It certainly won't be the tipping point in helping you rank, it just won't have that big of an effect. I'd look for something a bit easier on the eye/more readable and start building the brand.

    That brand point might be important as well. Remember one of the most common reasons for a penguin penalty was over optimised anchor text. With EMDs, your "brand" (as in the URL) is obviously also your keyword. I'm certain that's why so many EMDs were "penalised" - they just had masses of keyword exact match anchor texts and were penalised. The counter was "But wait, Google, this is my brand!" . Well, let's look at it, does something like boardcertifiedplasticsurgeons.com or buyecigarrettesuk.co.uk really look like a brand? Doesn't to me, and probably doesn't to Google.
     
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  5. Pro Link wheeler

    Pro Link wheeler Newbie

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    I don't think that domain name plays a big roll in the seo as if you have a domain name which is a very competetive keyword and your domain is pure new domain then you still have to work for it harder to get good rankings.It might effect a little but not make a big difference.
     
  6. lakim0

    lakim0 BANNED BANNED

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    Domain names have no big role in SEO as you get only search engine visitors, they don't really care how is your site named, more important is title and description. Of course exact words are useful but signs like this - make them avoid your domain, the reason : shit looking. Also I want to admit that exact domain has the same power as it used to have. Some say that is not true, but I stay devoted to my exact domains.
     
  7. stockbob55

    stockbob55 Registered Member

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    EMDs are still powerful when it comes to ranking without a doubt, but I am moving more towards the authority model myself.
    Many of my EMD sites were negatively affected by the last update and although, though making adjustments, they have now recovered I don't want to be forced to make changes at Google's whim every few months.
    If your keyword is worthwhile you can still target it on a page of a branded domain.
     
  8. saber210

    saber210 Supreme Member

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    It depends, if you are only focusing on search engine traffic, go for EMD, but for me it looks like spammy.

    But when you want to build your brand (if you are offering services) I suggest to keep it simple and catchy or easy to remember.
     
  9. seothief

    seothief Newbie

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    I usually shoot for authority sites and in that case I focus most on something brandable or easy to remember. I try to avoid hyphens and anything too long (personal preference less then 15 chars). With the EMD update this strengthens my focus for long term and grab one that I like rather then key stuffed. Either way, I think you can make almost any domain work for your biz
     
  10. RankGeek

    RankGeek Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Mighty powerful, mate. There is talk about EMDs being hit - but the reality is that only the EMDs which did not have anything to offer to visitors got hit. Several client sites we work on are back on top.
     
  11. Tangy

    Tangy Regular Member

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    Couldn't agree more. A bunch of the EMDs for brands that we work with took a minor hit when the update first rolled out, but it seems like Google corrected this to put proper/real EMDs back where they are supposed to be.

    Now if you're offering visitors-a-bunch-of-shit.com, you probably already know where you're going to be ranking.
     
  12. CosmicSoundz

    CosmicSoundz BANNED BANNED

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    Domain names are very important for a few reasons.

    Branding (protect your brand and also buy variation of competitor brands)
    remembering the domain name (something easy or memorable)
     
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  13. wMercw

    wMercw Junior Member

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    I think with the newest EMD google update the value of EMD has gone done quite a bit but they still have some value, what matters now is the amount of quality links pointing to your website.
     
  14. trex191

    trex191 Regular Member

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    not much emd did hurt a lot so its best to make a brand-able name or something easy to remember for people ------- emd still is not bad though
     
  15. viralyoutube

    viralyoutube Newbie

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    dont worry about emd too much. worry about good onsite and strong offsite seo. thatll rank you. also if you can buy from auctions, an old domain over 7 years is GREAT. ull end up spending 10 bucks more but itll cut ur work in half
     
  16. gullsinn

    gullsinn Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    EMD still help you a lot it depends on the quality of your work and effort.
     
  17. tejsin

    tejsin Power Member

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    lately the exact emd is not as important as before with googs but yahoo and bing still is
     
  18. maverickbiker

    maverickbiker Registered Member

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    ive read a few places that say you should keep the character length below 16 characters.
    Anything above that is too long and not easy to remember.

    Imo i try and avoid hyphens like the plague
     
  19. blackguy81

    blackguy81 Power Member

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    This is ! Instead of registering some long shit EMDs, if you can get hold of some short brandable domains with age (if you can find with PR already attached, you'll be golden..lol) in your niche - just go for it ! But be very careful before buying, they can be dropped or any penalty already attached if you're buying from any auction.
     
  20. Asasin15

    Asasin15 Newbie

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    it is helpful because there is no break in the words, how much is not massive but it does make a difference