discuss Return of EMDs

Spaceship Spaceship


Top Member
The other day, I came across a Twitter post in which an SEO expert suggested that the Helpful Content Update (HCU) might revive Exact Match Domains (EMDs) as people are compelled to explore alternative search methods for better results.

Personally, I believe Google has indeed made searching more challenging lately. It frustrates me that search results are dominated by ads and large corpo, regardless of what I'm looking for. As a workaround, I often append "reddit" to my searches, use quotation marks, or resort to other search engines to avoid sifting through endless corporate content that feels like eating preproduced genetically modified food that does nothing but harm.

There's a growing trend of people turning to AI over Google, which I find positive. I appreciate AI; in fact, I used it to correct the grammar in this post. However, I don't see AI as the solution for Google's monopolistic control over search results.

We yearn for genuine, human-authored experiences. This is why niche websites have thrived for so many years. The HCU, however, has somewhat diminished their prevalence. This topic is contentious; some argue that niche sites are far from extinct, while others believe they're a thing of the past. If you write "niche sites" to Twitter it suggests that approximately 80% (based on my own estimation )believe niche sites are no longer worth the effort.

Looking at domain sales data, it's evident that long-tail EMDs were popular in the 2000s but were virtually eliminated by Google by 2015. Since I couldn't access records older than ten years on NameBio, I relied on the "report completed sales" thread for historical data. Starting in 2017, I began compiling reports from this thread on NamePros, reaching up to around page 80. It was apparent that long-tail EMDs were once significant but have gradually vanished from sales reports. They're not completely extinct, as occasional sales still occur, but they're statistically insignificant.

After 2015, brandable domains gained prominence, yet Google remained useful, so the decline of long-tail EMDs wasn't particularly missed. Fast forward to today, and Google seems like a sinking ship, yet its vast influence keeps it in use by the majority, despite its lack of precision and utility. In fact, it seems to cause more harm than good.

If a dramatic shift were to occur in the mundane landscape of web search, prompting people to use domain names as they did in the 2000s, EMDs might make a comeback, forcing Google to reconsider its algorithmic strategies and perhaps become useful once again. One thing seems certain: domain names will persist and maintain some level of independence. People will always have the option to bypass Google by directly typing what they're interested in into the browser bar, instead of relying on Google or even ChatGPT.

Do you think EMDs could make a resurgence as people grow weary of corporate and AI-generated content, or is this notion just wishful thinking?
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This is why I bought a load of them a couple of years ago. I am now selling them all between $10 - $99 because I cant afford renewals, but I suspect that in 5 years time, they will be the next (old) new big thing.
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