I would gladly take such a bet.
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I'm not sure if you're aware since most of you are mostly involved in domain names business on this forum, but recently google introduced a new update with name penguin or webspam update.
The point is to reduce web spam and among many things many webmasters noticed that search ranking with exact match domains had been affected a lot.
I can surely state that the era of minisites with exact match domains are now officially ended. I own myself several exact match domains which I had turned into content websites in and from April 24 traffic most of those have been hugely affected , they simply went from position 5-6 to 50-100 or even nowhere.
I remember the times that exact match domains were dominating in google.com with that search terms even with minimal amount backlinks and low quality content , but now even an average internet user will be able to notice that exact match domains are almost disappeared from search ( unless they are really well developed and valuable sites )
In conclusion I think that nowadays exact match domains has very little advantage in term of seo over random domain, thus I expect in near future to see prices for these domains to go down since there will be no point for web developers ( end users ) to spend big $$$$, it'll be much wiser to spend money on quality content since these domain will no longer gonna help them to obtain desirable ranking.
I would gladly take such a bet.
@ James Sean - I would love buddy , but unfortunately there is no way to determine the winner
@ ianccc - Can you show a couple of successful minisites you own ? I can see from you sig that only Mississauga Debt Settlement ranking for 2-3 places in google , but that's not good case since this keyword do not have a strong competition and it's fairly easy to get ranked with this keyword even without exact match domain , also adwords tools is not showing any search volume ( so I guess you're ranking not because of exact match domain, but rather because of on-page seo)
Actually first version of Panda was introduced a year ago and it targeted websites with Low quality content ( it is not an update to get rid of overly optimized sites and it never was) , many geeks also considering it as a new ranking factor and not a penalization
And Penguin was designed to penalize overly optimized sites.
I can see an excellent candidate in your sig. Laptop Hard Drive , you have an excellent domain here and a year ago it was quite easy to reach first page for this keyword with such a domain. I see you've setup website very recently , probably several days ago so it's too early to judge , but again this is great one to monitor ( I'll appreciate if you'll inform me once you'll get first page ) as now it's not showing in search results at all.
The other websites are ranking on 2-nd page of google.ca ( not in top 100 of google.com ) , but I believe that in future it may appear on first page of google.ca
What I'm saying is that a year ago these domains were able to reach desired rankings without big efforts , I've done that many times but now it's simply not working. So I'll repeat the same the weight of exact match domains as a ranking factor is noticeably decreased .
I would be really happy if anybody on this forum will prove me that - Let's say domain " LasVegasHotels.com " is better then " lasvegashotels587.com " in term of SEO
what really is happening is... G has grown tired of s e o manipulation efforts to gain top spots on "it's" pages.
but as you say, if "low comp" names get rank and "high comp" are getting crimped, then that means the low names should/will rise in value, simply because there is less competition for space.
one fault is that many associated gkwt with actual traffic a domain could/would receive, rather than using it to see where the competition wasn't.
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I hope you know that the exact match means "the rate people search for that particular keyword" If yes, what else do you want from any domain to rank for a particular keyword, even SEO has to do with keywords to rank any website.
Rather, may be I do not understand you well.
Look at the bright side. It means the people who work hard to put out unique content have more of a fighting chance.
It's not all doom and gloom. The updates target spam. This means any content spun, rewritten or basically created for the sole purpose of cheating search rank or spamming ( or you can think of it as the more advanced made-for-adsense type of sites ) will be knocked down.
Do not try and replace pay per click with web development. The two are not the same. I know we need an alternative to PPC but web development is not the solution unless you are willing to put in the effort.
Sites made with effort are often not slave to Google updates and they have the potential to make more money versus mass web development produced websites. It also helps to focus your marketing efforts in other places besides search engines.
If you have sites that you feel will be affected by Penguin, it's time to do an overall audit to determine which ones to drop and which ones to improve.
Last edited by Tia Wood; 04-27-2012 at 11:52 AM.
^ You can be putting out high quality content but it doesn't make you immune to algo updates (this is applicable since the panda update where the updates became a lot more aggressive and complex).
The argument about how this makes it more of a level playing flied is BS as far as I am concerned. If you have good content promote it, it should sell itself. If you fail to do the marketing and your content doesn't gain any traction it's through no fault but your own. You can't blame it on all the SEO spammers that are gaining an unfair advantage.
I've got some articles that have received 1k+ FB likes (natural not paid) and the site that features this article plus many other highly popular articles has taken a hit. It's the nature of the beast with G nowadays although I would be hugely surprised if this update sticks and we don't see a rollback.
Last edited by dcristo; 04-27-2012 at 12:40 PM.
As I said: It also helps to focus your marketing efforts in other places besides search engines.
Last edited by Tia Wood; 04-27-2012 at 01:27 PM.
Thats just me talking normally lol. I guess I get frustated by incompetence, which google has been of late.
How is it comparing apples to oranges? I would say content that is getting shared is a pretty good indicator that it's quality content, which is exactly what you are talking about. Of course there are many indicators to determine what is quality and what isn't.
It seems to me that you are the one who is assuming too much. You are assuming an algorithm is not prone to error and cannot get it wrong and will only display the most relevant search results, when the fact of the matter is innocent websites with quality content have taken a hit.
The funny thing about google is the more aggressive its become in attempting to fight spam, the worse the results have gotten.
http://searchenginewatch.com/article...-Form-Now-Live“If you want to report spam that Google is missing, fill out a spam report and add the word penguin,” Cutts, Google’s Distinguished Engineer who leads the web spam team, tweeted yesterday. “If you know a site affected by algo update that you don't think should be affected, we made a form to provide feedback.”
most of my 'exact match' domains were hit with the first panda update. sucks. years of being number 1 with zero work couldn't last forever i guess but now the sites that are number 1 for those keywords are totally worthless.
But you can't deny the direction some domainers take when it comes to what type of websites they produce; websites that are the target of Google updates like this.
Last edited by Tia Wood; 04-27-2012 at 01:43 PM.
^ To be honest Tia I might say that this update did not bring better results
Search for example " world history online " or " world history " observe and you'll see at least 4-5 unrelated , outdated entries
Search for " Viagra " you'll find lot of hacked websites
there tons of such examples , I'm sure you'll be able to notice by yourself.
So here I'll agree with Dcristo either we'll see a rollback or another update will come to fix these issues
Ok Please have a look to this website ( It's mine ) www.htcphones.net before update it was ranking #2 - #3 for term "htc phones" , now it's on number #12 immediately after the update ( traffic decreased by 30-35% ). I've really put big efforts to produce hi quality content , but the problem is that site got hit by penguin - which means that it was overly optimized.The only message I was trying to convey is that quality content & non-seo marketing gives you a better chance of surviving algorithm changes; speaking to those who think pumping out massive amounts of low quality sites will actually do something.
I suspect that the reason is incoming links with mostly anchor text " htc phones " , but it's logical since it reflects the domain name . And thats why I've created this thread , as i was thinking aloud about value of exact match domains , I can bring many other examples to prove my point.
The point is that if you have exact match domain , it's most likely you'll get linked naturally with that anchor text , but as soon as your links will have bigger percentage of same anchor text you're in danger getting penalty (( even if you're not involved in link schemes ) - These are my personal opinions though
You may think google knows it all, but you would be wrong, and they get it wrong a lot.
I'm seeing this as well. It used to be you get the exact match .com domain, put up a simple site and be in the top 3 within a month for that term. That is no longer the case and IMO makes exact match domains worth WAY less.
1k+ people on FB is a good indicator that it's quality content but it's doesn't factor in everything else.
Last edited by Tia Wood; 04-27-2012 at 02:42 PM.
Magnify this trust factor for the majority of 1 million users when both websites appear in the search results. One looks like it was set up for an email scam, the other is the most succinct possible domain name for 'Las Vegas Hotels'. LasVegasHotels.com would have a much higher click-through rate. This extra engagement is feeding into Google's algorithm, pushing lesser engaged websites down the rankings. You probably won't find this on Search Engine Land though. The principle is similar to personalisation of search results, websites you've interacted with will appear higher in results next time you search for a similar keyphrase.
Test the click-through rate out or yourself - set up two duplicate PPC ads, one to pointing to a generic domain and another pointing generic587. It'll be pretty enlightening. You could try a similar test in organic rankings, but it would be more difficult as you'll be dealing with duplication issues.