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Should I Change My Domain To Include A Main Keyword


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7 replies to this topic

Poll: Changing domains (3 member(s) have cast votes)

Should I change my domain to inc keyword and 301 redirect old domain?

  1. Yes, the benefits will outweight the negatives (1 votes [33.33%])

    Percentage of vote: 33.33%

  2. No, stick with what you have (2 votes [66.67%])

    Percentage of vote: 66.67%

  3. Doesnt matter - it will make such a minor difference either way (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%

  4. Not sure (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%

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#1 monkeyhutmagic

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 10:33 PM

hey guys,

New to this forum and hoping to get some valuable opinions on this difficult decision I am trying to make.

I have owned monkeyhut.com.au since 2005. It's only ever been my personal website, but after much tweaking and optimising, it is performing fairly well in SERPs for my keywords. Having recently decided to take the plunge and start my own company, monkeyhut.com.au will now become my company website. Before I go all out and start trying to build backlinks and market the site, design business cards etc... I have an important decision to make. While it's still relatively easy to do with minimal impact, should I consider changing my domain to monkeyhutvfx.com.au (vfx being one of my main keywords) or is it a bad idea?

When I search for vfx, I notice that most of the links that come up do contain vfx within the domain, so it obviously has some impact (as Matt Cutts seems to agree with). He also says, in another video however, that 301 redirects do lose some link juice, albeit a minor amount. So, (the time and effort required to do so aside), would you advise that changing the domain and risking some loss of link juice would be a good idea in the long run? or am I better off not worrying about it?

Any advise, suggestions or opinions are greatly appreciated.

Cheers,
Justin

#2 Jill

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 10:51 PM

NO. You absolutely should not.

#3 monkeyhutmagic

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 11:33 PM

Thanks for responding Jill. Do you mind if I ask why you think it is a bad idea?

My other reason for considering the change is because all over the website (and via other social media sites) I refer to the company as Monkeyhut VFX, so I'm concerned that people will assume that the website is monkeyhutvfx.com.au rather than monkeyhut.com.au. I'm currently 301 redirecting monkeyhutvfx.com.au to monkeyhut.com.au anyway, so not worried about losing those customers who visit the wrong url, but I wonder if this will have any impact on my ranking also?

#4 piskie

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 05:16 AM

Forget the results of your Poll.
An unforced change to a Domain Name for an established site is about as bad a move as you can voluntarily make.

#5 chrishirst

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 06:18 AM

And let us know if you need any help to hold your foot down while you take careful aim.



#6 monkeyhutmagic

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 09:43 AM

I appreciate the feedback, but I'm still curious as to know why it's such a bad move? I mean, with a 301 redirect, I'm under the impression that an insignificant amount of link juice is lost? And changing the domain means that the domain name will be the same as the company name (everywhere I refer to the company as Monkeyhut VFX, not Monkeyhut - all my social media sites are also monkeyhutvfx). Also, with vfx in the domain, I believe that more people linking to my site will have the anchor text as Monkeyhut VFX, which will be beneficial in terms of SEO, correct - given that vfx is a major keyword?

As far as my research goes, I am led to believe that the age of the domain has little if any bearing on ranking, so that's not a reason to keep it. Having to change any current links (and contact anyone who currently links to the site and getting them to change their links) is a pain in the ass, but certainly something that is managable at this stage.

Apart from the reasons above, I also feel that having vfx in the name might entice more people to click on my link, because they know what business i am in..? It seems to give a bit more credibility?


Anyway, it's not that I disagree - I would just like to understand the reasoning behind the comments. Would someone mind elaborating with regard to my particular situation?

Cheers smile.gif

#7 piskie

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 12:08 PM

In my opinion, some of the main criteria for choosing a domain name are:
As Succinct as possible
Memorable
Easy to convey verbally
As little chance of ambiguity as possible

Now adding a word (or words) to an existing URL goes against those three distinct advantages.
When Search Results are displayed, the most prominent part of a listing is the HTML Title Text which should announce to the world what that Page is about
Only a minority will look at the actual URL.

The advantages from having a KW rich domain name are really quite minimal.

It wouldn't surprise me at all if the Google Algorithm was tuned to spot exactly what you are considering doing.
A dumb robotic analytical process would in all probability consider it as "Likely" to be spam.

This on top of all the disruption of incoming links etc and the whole exercise becomes a potential liability with IMO little if anything to be gained.


#8 chrishirst

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Posted 12 February 2012 - 09:57 AM

QUOTE
I appreciate the feedback, but I'm still curious as to know why it's such a bad move?

All of the above plus;

A: Because URL "keywords" are not nearly as "important" as you think they are.

B: You would be messing about with the "value" that is pointing to your URLs (don't lose sight of the fact that SEs crawl and index content at a URL NOT "pages") for no good reason.

C: Permanent redirects are NOT an instantaneous change for SEs, it can take several weeks for the "transfer" to actually happen. So there is a good chance that your SE refferal traffic will disappear or be seriously reduced for the transition period. Which may be permanent for some URIs.




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