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advice Google’s John Mueller Cautions Against Keyword-Rich Domains

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Keyword-rich domains may harm a website's long-term success, warns Google Search Advocate John Mueller. Here are five reasons why.
Keyword-rich domain names were once thought to be an effective way to increase a website’s visibility and improve search engine rankings.
However, there are several reasons why keyword-rich domain names can be detrimental to a website’s success.
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The views expressed on this page by users and staff are their own, not those of NamePros.
And again, Mueller's example of a keyword-rich domain was best-running-shoes.com
Again, he did not use that example.
 
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I've never seen the phrase "keyword-rich suggestion tools" in my life, In fact Google gives me 0 results for it (it also gives 0 results for keyword-rich suggestion tool")

What you're referring to is probably keyword suggestion tools. But that doesn't use the word keyword-rich.

And again, Mueller's example of a keyword-rich domain was best-running-shoes.com, which contains 3 keywords. Which can be considered excessive, since the norm is 1-2 keywords.

Here, as an appreciation for the English grammar lecture, I'll teach you how to use google, below.

123.JPG
 
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I've never seen the phrase "keyword-rich suggestion tools" in my life, In fact Google gives me 0 results for it (it also gives 0 results for keyword-rich suggestion tool")
Check it again. For "keyword rich domain suggestion tool" Google gives 47,700,000 results to me.
In fact at the first results page, every site has the title "keyword rich domain suggestion tool".
 
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Here, as an appreciation for the English grammar lecture, I'll teach you how to use google, below.

Show attachment 232565
Fair enough.

Check it again. For "keyword rich domain suggestion tool" Google gives 47,700,000 results to me.
In fact at the first results page, every site has the title "keyword rich domain suggestion tool".
Don't search for keyword rich domain suggestion tool search for "keyword-rich domain suggestion tool", notice the quotation marks.
 
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Keyword-rich domains may harm a website's long-term success, warns Google Search Advocate John Mueller. Here are five reasons why.
Keyword-rich domain names were once thought to be an effective way to increase a website’s visibility and improve search engine rankings.
However, there are several reasons why keyword-rich domain names can be detrimental to a website’s success.
Read More
Probably would have been better to link directly to the original in. She has tried to synopsize the original but it is obviously skewed.
Keyword-rich domains may harm a website's long-term success, warns Google Search Advocate John Mueller. Here are five reasons why.
Keyword-rich domain names were once thought to be an effective way to increase a website’s visibility and improve search engine rankings.
However, there are several reasons why keyword-rich domain names can be detrimental to a website’s success.
Read More

Yep. What this Mr. John Mueller does believe in is Google+, which he links to in his Twitter bio. However, that Google+ profile stopped working several years ago, because the service was discontinued by his employer.

Nothing to see here folks.

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Yes. Good point.

No offense to John Mueller, I'm sure he's a stand-up bloke who works hard etc., but he's a search "relations" guy. That's code for "the guy who always draws the shortest straw" and has to do the obligatory pr stuff no one else in the office wants to do because of shyness complexes.

I also noticed the thinness of his dossier on LinkdIn. If anyone believes this gentleman is THE search engine expert for Google or something even close, I have a very nice piece of land in the Everglades I'd like you to consider...
 
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From what I understood at that time, people were regging keyword EMDs and making crappy content to rank. Hence Google decided not to give that advantage.

If you have an EMD and have relevant content, it has to get a boost , however minimal.
 
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From what I understood at that time, people were regging keyword EMDs and making crappy content to rank. Hence Google decided not to give that advantage.

If you have an EMD and have relevant content, it has to get a boost , however minimal.
Yes. That is exactly it. Put succinctly, that is what happened. Further analysis is unnecessary.
 
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@VadimK, while I couldn't any definitive definition for what makes up a "keyword-rich domain," some people did use it in the same sense as you, i.e. a domain name that contains specific keywords for which you want to rank, not mentioning any specific number of keywords. So I'll concede this point.

If you have an EMD and have relevant content, it has to get a boost , however minimal.
No. This is what Mueller is refuting. The SLD is not considered in the ranking of a domain.

In response to a reddit post Mueller specifically clarified that web-design.com, web.design, and sabertoothed-hedgehog.com all rank the same for web-design. None of them receive a bonus of any kind.
 
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No. This is what Mueller is refuting. The SLD is not considered in the ranking of a domain.
If the SLD wasn't considered, you would not have a search engine. If I type in "running shoes", I get all types of sites that include "runners" or "running" or a brand left of the dot. Imagine if the keyword wasn't considered. You would search for runners and an automobile site might show up. Believe it or not, it WAS this way in the beginning. That process has just been refined, not expunged.
 
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If the SLD wasn't considered, you would not have a search engine. If I type in "running shoes", I get all types of sites that include "runners" or "running" or a brand left of the dot. Imagine if the keyword wasn't considered. You would search for runners and an automobile site might show up. Believe it or not, it WAS this way in the beginning. That process has just been refined, not expunged.
SLD stands for second-level domain. Take "example.com," herein "example" is the SLD, and "com" the TLD.

When you search for a term on Google it looks for the content and structure of your site, the keywords here refers to the url-directories, article headers, titles, etc. these are what Google's uses to rank your site. The SLD is not a factor in this according to Mueller.
 
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SLD stands for second-level domain. Take "example.com," herein "example" is the SLD, and "com" the TLD.

When you search for a term on Google it looks for site keywords and key-phrases. These keywords are different from the keywords in your SLD.
Yes, but also the SLD is considered. Sorry but it's always been that way and will continue to be, just in a more refined way. Not possible to have a search engine with rankings without consideration of left of the dot. But it is your prerogative to speculate in whatever direction you choose. I gave the simple example with "running shoes" and that is enough. And it's not just because "running shoes" show up on the web pages.

Trying to decipher this bloke's (John whoever) Google cookie-cuts is just a waste of time for me. But all the power to you if you truly glean something from it.
 
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Yes, but also the SLD is considered.
Prove it.

Google's Search Advocate, John Mueller, has made it clear in no uncertain terms that the SLD has no effect on SEO.

You're saying that he's wrong. But you have no evidence to back it up. It's all baseless speculation on your part.

So post the source you're basing your claim on.
 
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Prove it.

Google's Search Advocate, John Mueller, has made it clear in no uncertain terms that the SLD has no effect on SEO.

You're saying that he's wrong. But you have no evidence to back it up. It's all baseless speculation on your part.

So post the source you're basing your claim on, because I have no interest in indulging you on your conspiracy theories in this thread as well.
Are you paid an endorsement fee for this Mueller guy (aka 15 minute Mueller)?

In any case the burden of proof is on your shoulders. By virtue of Cutts and Mueller speaking toward a "cutback" in keyword domains (the SLD side) IS the proof that the SLD has always factored into their ranking equation. That equation is being refined but the keyword side is NOT being expunged.

Isn't that proof enough that SLD have ALWAYS factored into the ranking? That these Google guys come right out and say it has been a factor?! They have just implied weighting will be refined , that's all.
 
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In any case the burden of proof is on your shoulders.
The burden of proof is on the claimant.

You're making the claim that Mueller is lying. Back it up or back down.

By virtue of Cutts and Mueller speaking toward a "cutback" in keyword domains (the SLD side) IS the proof that the SLD has always factored into their ranking equation. That equation is being refined but the keyword side is NOT being expunged.

Isn't that proof enough that SLD have ALWAYS factored into the ranking? That these Google guys come right out and say it has been a factor?! They have just implied weighting will be refined , that's all.
What you're referring to was over 10 years ago, and no one is arguing that SLD wasn't a factor in 2012.

However, Mueller's recent (2022) statement was that there's no difference in the ranking for web-design between web-design.com and sabertoothed-hedgehog.com.

This means that SLD doesn't matter. At all. Because sabertoothed-hedgehog has nothing to do with web-design.
 
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Heehee, I claimed nothing. It's a fact that SLD has been a part of the equation since the beginning. They said it, not me. I'm saying it is still a factor, they will just refine. It's funny but Mueller parallels Cutts, 10 years later. He said basically the same thing Cutts said 10 years ago. Mueller would have said nothing if they didn't still rely on the SLD for rankings in 2023. So yet again, they said it, not me.

Let's get a real programmer from Google in here, not a relations manager.

In any case, thanks for the chat. Best of luck.
 
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Heehee, I claimed nothing.
You've made a ton of claims and you've haven't backed up a single one.

It's a fact that SLD has been a part of the equation since the beginning. They said it, not me. I'm saying it is still a factor, they will just refine. It's funny but Mueller parallels Cutts, 10 years later. He said basically the same thing Cutts said 10 years ago. Mueller would have said nothing if they didn't still rely on the SLD for rankings in 2023. So yet again, they said it, not me.
Now you're straight-up lying.

Let's get a real programmer from Google in here, not a relations manager.
He's a senior search analyst. It's right there on his LinkedIn profile.
 
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This is what Mueller is meaning by what he say.
Dashed domains are crap, easy as that. imo

Definition of YMMV
(YMMV stands for “your mileage may (or might) vary.” This acronym is frequently used to refer to the differences between people’s experiences, preferences, or locations. It’s similar to AFAIK: “as far as I know.”

It’s also a fairly common phrase in real-world conversations. The literal version, which refers to the actual gas mileage a vehicle gets, is a helpful disclaimer. Even if two people drive the same car, they might get different gas efficiencies based on their driving habits.)
Source
 
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This is what I'm referring to.

searchenginejournal.com/google-no-seo-bonus-for-keyword-based-domains/438324/

There’s no secret (or public) SEO-bonus for having your keywords in the domain name.
 
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Here's what he said literally:

I'm not a fan of keyword-keyword domains, but YMMV. Random thoughts:
  • everyone thinks you're a spammer
  • changing business focus, or even expanding, is harder
  • you have no brand name, there's nothing that people can search for which "obviously" should show your site. You're always competing, you're not building value with long-term users.
Source:

Hey John Mueller -- Why did Open Ai buy keyword, Ai.com? :)
 
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Hey John Mueller -- Why did Open Ai buy keyword, Ai.com? :)
Bull's-eye! A topical, practical example. AI is a top acronym/keyword AND a brand. But wait, I can search engine optimize OpenAI.com or open-ai- for-you-and-me.com, so why would I need AI.com? Because it's the perfect name that covers both the keyword and brand aspect of that niche. It's the Uber brand/keyword for that niche. Worth the $xxxxxxxx they paid for it.
 
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This topic seems to pop up almost every year. Even in 2012 they explained it pretty clearly:

2012
"Google algo change will reduce low-quality "exact-match" domains in search results."

2011
https://www.namepros.com/threads/google-search-updates-and-traffic.703931/#post-4066860

2014
https://www.namepros.com/threads/do...-names-days-are-numbered.813982/#post-4594644

2017
https://www.namepros.com/threads/ha...d-keyword-domains.1042430/page-2#post-6371900
Exactly. So what is the implication? SLD keywords have been part of their formula from the beginning. Just by speaking about weighting it less demonstrates the past incalcation.

Wow. Isn't this clear as day (not to you JB, just saying in general...)? Its like the cookie maestro telling me he or she is going to take a better peanut butter cookie the next time they bake. So then I understand the implication they had used a peanut butter cookie recipe before. Now he is striving to make better ones by adjusting the formula/recipe. But pretty sure peanuts will still be involved.
 
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You've made a ton of claims and you've haven't backed up a single one.


Now you're straight-up lying.


He's a senior search analyst. It's right there on his LinkedIn profile.
Sure. I am lying. With every sentence I write.

The facts lie in the implication of the words (however mysterious they might be) of these Google "experts" or rather public relations specialists.

If you can read a credential that I don't, maybe that's a matter of where each of us is accessing his profile from. All I see is a very short dossier about his time at Google. Nothing more.
 
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Uhm... Isn't this old news? I mean, it's common knowledge emds don't help your ranking from a SEO point of view.

The reason this question, and these stupid answers I may add, keep popping up is because in the past you could use any shitty 5 word dashed emd and you would have a lot of ranking benefits. Times have changed. People are quite stubborn when they were taught something which has now become outdated knowledge.

The gist of his statement is: this is no longer the case. Content is king. Everything else is just discussing semantics.
 
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Uhm... Isn't this old news? I mean, it's common knowledge emds don't help your ranking from a SEO point of view.

The reason this question, and these stupid answers I may add, keep popping up is because in the past you could use any shitty 5 word dashed emd and you would have a lot of ranking benefits. Times have changed. People are quite stubborn when they were taught something which has now become outdated knowledge.

The gist of his statement is: this is no longer the case. Content is king. Everything else
 
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