Domain Name as an SEO Ranking Factor

Domain Name as an SEO Ranking Factor

When starting your own page, WordPress blog or a new company website, one of the first steps to take with caution is choosing a proper domain name. This important decision can be crucial for your website’s success as it can directly impact your search engine optimization (SEO), as well as social media marketing (SMM). This is why we are taking a closer look at some of the most useful tips on how to make your domain name a significant SEO ranking factor.

Love at First Site

We have one word for you – Transparency. Search engines are much like people, they like clear, simple and transparent URLs. This is exactly why your domain name should be easily readable by both, your visitor and the search engine he or she uses. Accessibility has always been one of the key parts of good SEO tactics, especially in this day and age when the search engines got so sophisticated that they can actually differentiate between the content that is engaging and the one that is not. So, make sure you go with a simple and direct URL that can be easily readable at a first glance.

A Tree with many Branches Blocks your View

Whenever possible, use only one domain and only one subdomain. Although it can work in some cases, moving your content from a subdomain to subfolder won’t really improve your results, in fact, it may actually lead to the loss of traffic. The thing is, search engines use a certain method to “decide” whether your content should inherit the ranking ability of its parent domain, and they usually have trouble consistently passing the rankings to subdomains. Of course, using a subdomain is sometimes the only solution to set up a blog or post the desired content, but do bear in mind that your blog is far more likely to achieve better rankings if it is all together on one sub and root domain.

Less is More

Although this tactic isn’t necessarily crucial, since Google and Bing can easily process long ones, shorter URLs are generally preferable over longer ones. Of course, you don’t have to go to the other extreme and create really short and vague URLs, as that can also be rather counterproductive. So, what is the golden ratio, you ask? If your URL is somewhere between 40 and 80 characters, you are on the safe side, but if you are looking to assemble URL which is pushing 100+ characters, make sure you find a way to rewrite it and make it a bit shorter and more concise, otherwise your post may encounter major usability and user experience issues. Don’t forget that shorter URLs are much easier to parse, embed and share on social media.

The Duplicity of Exact Match Domain Names

For years, even decades now, one way of achieving great SEO rankings was through an exact match domain name. Descriptive and exact match domain names turn out to be much better ranked than generic and non-descriptive domain name. It all boils down to the very act of searching. For example, if you are in the need for a divorce lawyer (hopefully not, but if you are), you will probably type in those two exact words in a search engine, so the search engine is then more likely to rank DivorceLawyer.Me much higher than some RandomNameCompany.Me. But will this always work?

Not exactly. Especially lately as Google started devaluing many websites with exact match domain names in order to reduce the amount of “poor” website content popping up highly in search results. Double-edged sword, indeed.

So, what is the bottom line then? – Keep it simple, descriptive, transparent and concise. In order to always be on the safe side and avoid all these gray areas, we recommend trying out .ME as we offer many SEO benefits. Our Open ccTLD (Country Code Top Level Domains) acts like a regular Top Level Domain, meaning Google doesn’t actually see it as country-targeted content and opens your business many doors, same as with traditional domain names like .com or .org.

Possibilities are endless. Give .ME a go.

Author: Sarah Green

Sarah Green explores the latest web trends and covers stories related to technology, startups and digital life in general. Writing professionally since 2012, she has developed a sixth sense for trending topics in these fields.

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