Why Matching Your Domain Name with Keywords No Longer Works

By Tenisha Mercer

Google's EMD update is affecting exact domain matches

Google’s EMD update in September affected exact domains matches.

For years, SEOs have managed to almost instantly obtain higher rankings by using “exactmatch” domains — using keywords as domain names, such as teethwhitening.com or RoofingAtlanta.com, for example.

That all changed in September, after Googled announced algorithm updates — called EMD — that focused on spammy or low-quality exact match domains. To be fair, not all exact match domains are spammy. But many are.

Why Exact Domains Meant Higher Ranking

Exact domains worked — for a long time. Many copied this strategy, resulting in keyword-stuffed articles that, essentially were worthless content to human readers, but gold to search engines.

Google’s EMD update is now trying to right that and, according to Google’s Matt Cutts, “reduce low-quality ‘exact-match’ domains in search results.”

What to do Now

This may not be a one-time and done type of thing, but periodic updates to catch those flying under the radar, according to SearchEngineLand. Think long and hard about using exact match domains. If it contains good content and good links, it may still be a good strategy IF you have brand recognition AND good, quality content.

Just don’t expect to instantly dominate rankings as once before.

And, focus on content. Write content for humans, not search engines. Focus on bringing visitors consistent high-quality content that they can’t find anywhere else. Add social sharing buttons to your site, and spread content using social media sites such as Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest, YouTube, Instagram, and other sites to establish more credibility.

Tenisha Mercer is an SEO writer in Atlanta with content on page #1 of Google, Yahoo and Bing. She is a digital branding expert, an Atlanta web content writer, Atlanta SEO copywriter and social media expert in Atlanta who specializes in powerful, high-impact copywriting and digital content that clicks with customers. Tenisha Mercer has produced and managed content marketing for clients in health care, retail and technology, including the CDC, The Home Depot, NCR, Sears, GMAC, General Motors Corporation, NCR, and small businesses nationwide.  

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