Is Domain Name A Google Ranking Element?

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Remember the early days of the web?

You could invest all day chatting with your buddies on AOL messenger while you played solitaire on Yahoo games. And after that your mom got the phone to telephone, and you were started the web. Great times.

In those days, if you were doing some shopping, there was a likelihood you were doing it on a site with a specific match domain (EMD). For example, if you needed a pet dog collar, you ‘d most likely wind up on a site with an address like

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

Regrettably (or perhaps fortunately, depending on how you feel about EMDs), scammers and bad actors took advantage of this, took up a number of these domains, and connected them to low-quality sites.

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

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

[Download:] The Total Google Ranking Elements Guide

The Claim: Is Domain Call A Ranking Factor?

Having a specific match domain utilized to be a huge offer.

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

It was (and in some cases still is) typical for people in the SEO market to promote for EMDs. The claims around them normally being that they instantly generate trustworthiness and generate a competitive edge.

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

The Proof: The Effect Of Domain Names On SEO

There is a great deal of combined 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 Webmaster Hangout, Matt Cutts, a software engineer on Google’s Browse Quality group, acknowledged the role EMDs played in the tech giant’s search algorithm.

Nevertheless, he likewise stated:

“And so, we have been thinking of changing that mix a little bit and sort of turning the knob down within the algorithm, so that provided two 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, in 2012, Cutts tweeted that low-grade precise match domains would get lowered presence in search results page.

Finally, in 2020, Google Web Designer Trends Analyst John Mueller revealed keywords in domain no longer play a role in determining search engine results rankings.

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

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

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

Our Verdict: Your Domain Name Is Not A Ranking Element, However Is Still Important

Now that we’ve developed that domain names are NOT a part of your overall online search engine rankings, SEO specialists can simply ignore them, right?

Absolutely not.

Your choice of a domain name can be a crucial aspect of your UX and public image. Your domain should normally be the most identifiable element of your company. Often that’s not your organization name but a particular brand name or hallmark.

You might wish to consider subdomains or perhaps separate domains for various homes. If you offer items that resellers carry, this can assist your clients find you more easily.

Using keywords in your domain does not assist in regards to search ranking; if not done correctly, it could even harm your SEO.

But, if your branding is greatly focused on a particular product or service, including a keyword in the domain might help users understand what you have to do with at a glimpse. A carefully put keyword could likewise assist draw in audiences most likely to convert.

Do not hesitate to use a keyword if it’s highly pertinent or part of your branding.

So, here’s the TL; DR: Your domain name doesn’t directly affect your Google ranking however provides opportunities for savvy web online marketers to reflect their brand name’s worths and develop more positive user experiences.

For more assistance choosing a domain, check out Roger Montti’s advice.

Included Image: Paulo Bobita/Best SMM Panel