Gone are the days when you can get ranked in search engine (most especially google.com) just by registering a domain name that is made up of the main phrase you are targeting. Registering exact match domain (EMD) was highly profitable until last weekend when Google effected another change in their search algorithm.
It started last week Friday with announcement made by Matt Cutts (the head of webspam at Google). When Matt made the announcement, many people did not expect it to be a major shake up because according to Matt the Google algo change was to reduce low-quality “exact-match” domains in search result.
However, in the past few days it has become obvious that it is a major sweep of exact match domains from search engine. Several quality sites got penalized just because they have exact phrase in their domain. Some of them didn’t even over optimized their site for those phrases. The truth is we also lost a good number of our sites too. However, our authority sites were not affected in any way. I will tell you later in this article how you can also focus on building authority sites.
The good old days
Before the change, you can easily get ranked for phrase like “teeth whitening” just by having the domain name www.teethwhitening.com. A lot of domainers even profited a lot from ‘exact match’ domain days. I can bet majority of them are still keeping thousands of exact match domain names they acquired to resell for big buck later. Teethwhitening.me is still on offer on sedo.com for $1,029.
What is the way out?
One of the main reasons why most internet marketers go for niches with exact match domains in the first place is to profit from several micro niche markets. Now that registering exact domain name is becoming a thing of the past you may want to consider setting up one authority website. You simply put all your eggs in one basket and watch it.
If you set up an authority website on a topic, you don’t need to use an exact market domain at all. As a matter of fact you don’t have any reason to try to rank the homepage of your site. You can populate your site with content from different sources. You don’t even have to write it all yourself. You can curate content, interview people or allow guest content on it. Your content will focus on ranking internal pages of your site.
When it comes to traffic generation, most authority sites don’t necessarily depend on building thousands of backlinks just to get ranked in search engines. Nowadays, there are several places where you can syndicate your site content for direct web visitors and good ranking in search engines.
Content Discovery Platform – paying to showcase your content
If you still want to take the micro niche – exact match domain route you can forget about Google ranking and start using social media and paid traffic. There are several inexpensive paid traffic sources nowadays too.
With the speed at which content discovery platforms like outbrain.com are growing, I see a lot of publishers doing away with Google in future and relying more on paid sources like ‘content discovery’ services to get more people to see their content. When that starts happening, I’m very sure Google will start acquiring such companies to save their butt.
If you lost your exact-match domain web project to Google change, don’t quit because of that. Simply change your approach. Write or outsource creation of useful and share-able themed content. Then use content syndication, content discovery, social media and social network to get exposure.
Whatever, approach you take, make sure you build list of subscribers because that is the only way you can be in control. Google, Yahoo, Bing, Facebook and others will continue to make changes that favor their investors and pockets but if you are in control of your traffic, you won’t be out of business like several thousands of website owners that are already out of business as a result of Google’s recent frequent change.