I have had a version of the following question no less than 12 times this month so far…
How important is it to get a domain that is a dot com and exactly matches your primary key word or phrase?
The answer is really kind of weird as it is…
1. In some ways very important
2. In some ways not that important at all
Here’s why, if you wanted to rank your site for “blue widgets” there is absolutely no doubt that if you owned bluewidgets.com it would be a tremendous advantage to getting a top rank for the term. Further if the term is only moderately competitive it is just about guaranteed that owning that domain along with very basic SEO would result in a top three if not a number one ranking.
On the other hand there are plenty of ultra competitive terms with sites having top ranks that don’t have the term in the URL at all. The URL structure is only one component of search engine rankings, though it is in some ways a very powerful one.
With ranking a site for say “blue widgets” I would state that if you can get any domain you want the following rules apply
- The best domain would be bluewidgets.com
- The second best option would be bluewidgets.net, bluewidgets.org, bluewidgets.co etc.
- The third best option would be something like thebluewidgets.com or mybluewidgets.com
- The fourth best option would be something like blue-widgets.com
- The last option would be something like mysite.com/blue-widgets or bluewidgits.mysite.com (the second one is great for a “mini site”)
- In the end content and links will have the greater effect on ranking anyway so get the best domain you can and rock on.
The above is all purely from a search engine ranking perspective. There are many other factors such as with the right term you can get a lot of “direct request traffic”. Also a site like bluewidgets.com is ideal for word of mouth marketing or conventional advertising for a variety of reasons. To hear more on this often confusing subject tune in to today’s episode.
For more on my thoughts about not obsessing over this topic to much listen to Episode-30- Dot Net, Dot Com, Dot Org and Negative Greed