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  1. #1
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    Is it safe to get clients to choose Exact Match Domain for a new website?

    Hello everyone,

    Firstly, Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year to all,

    Over the last couple of years, I have used EMD's very successfully for my client websites. I used their profession linked to a local place such as attorney + sandton.co.za (not my site - example only).

    However, I recently published a friends website and it is not ranking at all. I followed my normal strategy (without completing Google+Local) and the site isn't responding. His site is photographers + johannesburg.co.za (remove the spaces and + sign).

    I'm not sure if Google's EMD actions have affected the site negatively.

    1. Have any of you found similar results?
    2. Is it not a safe practise anymore to get clients to chose a domain name with their local city in it?


    Any help will be very much appreciated.

    Best regards

    Greg

  2. #2
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    Re: Is it safe to get clients to choose Exact Match Domain for a new website?

    Hi Greg, Happy New Year!

    Well EMDs still rank all over in local. Check tampa divorce lawyer for one example. Several EMDs on page 1.

    My understanding is that thin or spammy sites that donít deserve to rank will no longer rank simply on the weight of an EMD. But I don't believe EMDs that have good content were dinged.

    But it could be that NEW EMDs are a little harder/slower to rank until they build up credibility or have more content or something. Not sure, just guessing.
    Linda Buquet .:. Forum Founder, Google Local Specialist

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    Note: Due to mulitple RSI injuries, pardon short replies. Typos? Blame it on "Dragon".

  3. #3
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    Re: Is it safe to get clients to choose Exact Match Domain for a new website?

    I guess the question then would be, since the changes a few months ago, does the EMD contribute at all? For the ones with good content that rank well, is any of the ranking coming from the EMD, or is it all from the good content?

  4. #4
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    Re: Is it safe to get clients to choose Exact Match Domain for a new website?

    Really great point Gregg. You always help me look at things from a different perspective and that's a good one! They may be ranking irregardless of the EMD based on strength of content and other marketing efforts.
    Linda Buquet .:. Forum Founder, Google Local Specialist

    If you benefit from advice here... Please pay the community back by sharing on social OR helping someone else at the forum. Thank you!

    Don't Miss Important News & Tips! Subscribe to Daily Email Digest Here

    Note: Due to mulitple RSI injuries, pardon short replies. Typos? Blame it on "Dragon".

  5. #5
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    Re: Is it safe to get clients to choose Exact Match Domain for a new website?

    From my reading, I see nothing that says EMDs will hurt. They may still help some but not as much as they used to, and part of that depends on the content of the site at that address. I read the recent cautions as saying that a crap site will no longer rank just because it has an exact match domain, which to be fair was a problem in the past. That's also true for keyword anchor text links.

    Keywords in page titles and page filenames may still help too.

    And EMDs are sometimes easier for potential customers to remember so even if it doesn't boost search rankings it may still help with traffic.

  6. #6
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    Re: Is it safe to get clients to choose Exact Match Domain for a new website?

    As long as the site is relevant, should still be safe.

    With 200-300 and possibly more Organic ranking factors, and this only being 1, if the .com, .net, .org, etc is available, scoop it up.

    I don't believe G gives quite as much weight as she used to, but IMO, it doesn't make sense to penalize either, as long as the on site content, links, anchor text, meta info, etc match the EMD.

    Greg, Please update when site does get listed as well as others you are using same system with. Thanks for the post!!
    Scott L Smith: We've Got Your Customers
    We've Got Your Customers: When You Absolutely, Positively Have To Be Found!!

  7. #7
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    Re: Is it safe to get clients to choose Exact Match Domain for a new website?

    I've found that EMDs still do well in the rankings, even new domains. I do believe that it does give a site a little boost in the rankings, but perhaps not as much as it did in the past. I could be wrong, but in my findings, it does seem to help a little. I agree with Linda and the others who mentioned the site content. I think when Google came out and warned against exact match domains, many freaked out and mentally condemned all EMDs. But what they were really warning against were low-quality sites that had low-value content and that depended entirely on their exact match domain name to help them rank in the search engines. From my experience, if your site has good content and you are doing good on-site and off-site SEO, your site will do well in the search engines, regardless if your domain is an EMD or not. I would just advise that a domain name make sense to a human and not be just a bunch of keywords stuck together.
    David @ Touch Point Digital | New Orleans Local SEO & Web Design
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  8. #8
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    Re: Is it safe to get clients to choose Exact Match Domain for a new website?

    Quote Originally Posted by Linda Buquet View Post
    Hi Greg, Happy New Year!

    Well EMDs still rank all over in local. Check tampa divorce lawyer for one example. Several EMDs on page 1.

    My understanding is that thin or spammy sites that donít deserve to rank will no longer rank simply on the weight of an EMD. But I don't believe EMDs that have good content were dinged.

    But it could be that NEW EMDs are a little harder/slower to rank until they build up credibility or have more content or something. Not sure, just guessing.
    Thanks Linda,

    I have looked at this in quite some depth and you are correct, there are many EMD sites that still rank very well. In fact, as I mentioned, most of my sites are still on top. I think this is because the sites have quality content and for the most part, the SEO is fine.

    It's just that the site in question, still doesn't appear anywhere in the top 100 positions (using Rank Checker). This is of particular concern because on most occasions, I have been able to get Google to find the site within 5 days and then ranked on 1st page within 2 weeks. The best I have ever done was to get the site found in 3days and 1st page by the 6th day - (No blackhat tactics used.)

    I don't know...perhaps I need to build some more links and directory listings?

    Just a thought - it may just be that the site was launched very close to when Google implemented the EMD change???

    Anyway, let me see what I can do....I will let you know.

    Regards

    Greg

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