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The Pros and Cons of Keyword-Rich Domains

When it comes to choosing a domain name, there are numerous strategies one can employ to ensure they make the best selection possible.  One strategy that is often recommended is the implementation of a popular keyword relative to your niche.  While there are obvious advantages to such a move, there are also instances where it could work to your disadvantage.  This article will go over both sides of the spectrum.

The Bright Side

The way some explain it, you might believe that incorporating a keyword into your domain will automatically result in high search engine rankings for that particular term.  This might be the case in an uncompetitive market but let’s face it, those fields are far and few these days.  In fact, it is quite debatable how much search engines take your domain URL into account.  Be that as it may, every step helps in the battle to increase search engine visibility.  A good keyword-rich domain will definitely come in handy when submitting your site to directories and participating in link exchange programs.  It will also allow you to have your domain name become bolded in the search engine results, putting emphasis on what your site is all about.  Therefore, even if its only a small boost, it goes a long way in achieving those quality rankings you desire.

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The Downside

The main disadvantage to keyword implementation is the likelihood that your domain will be similar to the competition’s.  Just think about how many URLs have the terms “web hosting” in them.  In such a highly competitive niche, your domain will be strikingly similar to the next, a factor that might lead potential clients to believe they have already paid you a visit.  Trying to leverage a popular keyword or phrase could also lead to a domain name that is too long, difficult to remember and doesn’t necessarily apply to your specialties.  This could end up limiting both your click-through and conversion rates.  If this is the road you decide to take, keep in mind that people are more likely to associate you with generic keywords rather than the actual name of your business.

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Search Engine Rankings vs. Brand Awareness

Before registering a domain name, you must make the difficult decision of what is the most important: achieving high search engine rankings or establishing brand awareness.  Now let’s clear the air here – just because you choose to focus on your brand doesn’t necessarily mean that you won’t get search engine rankings.  That goal just might take a bit longer to achieve.  If the name of your business is highly marketable, you probably want it to be well known throughout your niche.  Remember that this is no overnight thing as it could take months and possibly years to accomplish.  The rewards however, are worth the wait.  Just imagine having the name of your business come up whenever some mentions that particular niche.  On the other hand, if your company name is less marketable, establishing a brand name may not be as important.  In this case, you might be satisfied with getting good search engine rankings.  There is really no right or wrong here.  It’s all about what determining what works best for your website.

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2 Comments

  • Avatar for Alberto Alberto says:

    I think that having keywords in your URL will always be valuable. It helps with SEO and it will always help when trying to brand your website.

    I have a friend who owns the domain http://www.blink182music.net. His site sits in position 7 for the term Blink 182 Music and he hasn’t done anything but add content to the website.

    I honestly don’t think there are any cons to this method of choosing a domain name.

  • Avatar for Logo Design Logo Design says:

    I’m new in the internet business field. I’m skilled in the graphics side, but I need info to learn about this business. I was going through your post and got a few pointers.

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