Is Domain Call A Google Ranking Factor?

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Keep in mind the early days of the internet?

You could spend all the time chatting with your buddies on AOL messenger while you played solitaire on Yahoo games. And then your mommy picked up the phone to phone, and you were started the web. Great times.

In those days, if you were doing some shopping, there was a good chance you were doing it on a website with a specific match domain (EMD). For instance, if you needed a canine collar, you ‘d probably wind up on a site with an address like

In those primitive days of seo, it prevailed for business to put their precise target keyword expression right in their domain URL.

Sadly (or perhaps luckily, depending upon how you feel about EMDs), scammers and bad actors made the most of this, took up a lot of these domains, and linked them to low-grade websites.

So, what holds true today? Does your domain name have an influence on search results page?

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

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The Claim: Is Domain Call A Ranking Factor?

Having an exact match domain utilized to be a big deal.

In 2010, cost $49.7 million: still the most costly domain name purchase of all time. So plainly, somebody valued domains with that keyword.

It was (and sometimes still is) common for people in the SEO industry to advocate for EMDs. The claims around them generally being that they quickly generate trustworthiness and create a competitive edge.

But keep in mind those bad actors we spoke about in the last area? Ultimately, Google got wise to their keyword-stuffing URLs and altered its algorithm to discount them. However that’s not to say your site’s domain does not affect SEO.

The Evidence: The Effect Of Domain On SEO

There is a great deal of mixed information about domain names and their influence on rankings.

There’s no concern that domain names contributed in rankings at one point.

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

Nevertheless, he also specified:

“And so, we have actually 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 assist you as much to have a domain with a bunch of keywords in it.”

And just one year later on, in 2012, Cutts tweeted that low-grade specific match domains would get reduced exposure in search engine result.

Lastly, in 2020, Google Webmaster Trends Analyst John Mueller exposed keywords in domain no longer play a role in figuring out search engine results rankings.

Addressing a question if keywords in domain effect rankings throughout an Ask Google Webmasters video, he said, “In other words, no. You do not get a special bonus like that from having a keyword in your top-level domain.”

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

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

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

engine rankings, SEO specialists can just forget

them, right? Absolutely not. Your option of a domain name can be an important element of your UX and public image. Your domain name need to generally be the most identifiable element of your business. Sometimes that’s not your organization name however a particular brand or trademark.

You might want to consider subdomains and even separate domains for different properties. If you sell items that resellers bring, this can assist your consumers find you more easily.

Using keywords in your domain doesn’t assist in terms of search ranking; if not done correctly, it might even harm your SEO.

However, if your branding is heavily concentrated on a particular service or product, including a keyword in the domain might help users understand what you’re about at a glance. A thoroughly put keyword might also assist draw in audiences likely to convert.

Don’t hesitate to use a keyword if it’s extremely appropriate or part of your branding.

So, here’s the TL; DR: Your domain doesn’t straight impact your Google ranking however offers chances for smart web online marketers to reflect their brand name’s worths and develop more favorable user experiences.

For more aid selecting a domain name, check out Roger Montti’s advice.

Included Image: Paulo Bobita/Best SMM Panel

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