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Unread 11th July 2010, 04:38 PM   #1
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Default Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

Apart from being inconvenient does having dashes in your domain name affect your indexing, ranking, or marketing?

Some believe it is bad for SEO whilst others say it doesn't make any difference.

What do you think?

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Unread 11th July 2010, 04:46 PM   #2
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

I say no diffrence as far as seo however as with any good domain the better the EMD (exact match domain) the better for direct type in.

example

Lets say you sell hair brushes and some people who only think of .com and nothing else (which is why time and effort should play into your domain name INCLUDING money spent on a good one) will type in hairbrushes.com INSTEAD of hair-brushes.com

So with a hyphen you lose out on direct type in traffic.
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Unread 11th July 2010, 04:56 PM   #3
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

Dashes haven't caused any issues in rankings, when comparing sites with dashes, and them without.

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Unread 11th July 2010, 04:59 PM   #4
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

No difference other than for direct type in traffic that I've seen. Curious if dashes effect anything in other search engines besides google/yahoo - which are fine.
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Unread 11th July 2010, 07:06 PM   #5
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

At the moment, domains with dashes are treated the same as those without dashes. That may change in the future (depending on the search algorithms).

The decision on whether to buy or develop a domain with dashes really depends on what you want to use it for. If its for the general public and you are going to promote it by "word of mouth", you want it to be memorable, so dashes might not be the one to use in this circumstance. Hope this helps.

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Unread 11th July 2010, 07:16 PM   #6
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

I hear a lot of controversy on this topic as well. I think another point is is domains with hyphens aren't as easy for return visitors to remember... good discussion
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Unread 11th July 2010, 07:57 PM   #7
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

Listen to the writer. She knows of what she speaks.
Alexa - feel free to correct my grammar.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexa Smith View Post
First, they're actually hyphens: a dash is a different punctuation mark.

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Unread 11th July 2010, 08:03 PM   #8
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

I have domains with hyphens (aka dashes ) and without and haven't noticed a difference in how my rankings are on google page one. though the hypen domains I use - I don't use for branding or on a business card as I think they look bad for that. I use them when a keyword optimized phrase is already taken and the buying a domain with a hyphen is a solution for that.

I agree with Simon - it depends on what you will use it for.

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Unread 11th July 2010, 08:10 PM   #9
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

What if you hyphen a brand name?
Just for instance, "Le-gos-et-sale.Com.
Would Google read it as "Lego Set Sale" and would that be an infringment of the "Lego" trademark?

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Unread 11th July 2010, 08:14 PM   #10
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

I have lots of domains with hyphens... probably more than without. And I have never seen a ranking (SEO) difference. So there's that.

One thing to consider, though, is the perceived value of a domain name if you flip sites or think you might ever want to flip a site you develop. Seems to me that buyers put less stock in a hyphenated domain.

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Unread 11th July 2010, 08:16 PM   #11
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

Dashes are fine and does not pose any problem with regards to indexing of SEO. As long as the website name is not over filled with dashes or too long.

plus it makes for cheaper domains if it is a very competitive niche domain name.
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Unread 11th July 2010, 08:19 PM   #12
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

I've seen situations where domains with hyphens do better than ones without, even though they both used the same two keywords. Therefore, I'd have to say the hyphens in your domain name do NOT have a negative impact on your SEO/Ranking and in fact, may even positively impact your SEO/Ranking.

I hope this helps clarify this issue for you a bit

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Unread 11th July 2010, 08:27 PM   #13
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

Same for me, I have very well ranking hyphen-domains.
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Unread 11th July 2010, 10:37 PM   #14
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

I watched a video today of Matt Cutts from Google talking about getting good rankings and good traffic, and one of the things he specifically mentioned was having hyphens in your URL.

He said Google likes hyphens, as it makes it easier for the SE to determine what you're trying to say.
He used the example of ExpertsExchange.com.
The search engine can see that two ways: one as Experts Exchange. The other as Expert Sexchange.
HUGE difference there in meaning and what kind of traffic you'll be getting!

Personally, I see a hyphenated website URL in my search results and I avoid it like the plague; because in my long experience of being on the web I've learned that if it has hyphens in it, it's most likely some sales website built solely for the keywords by someone who doesn't know a thing about the topic but they've got a sponsor product matching that keyword phrase that they want to sell.

However, I am not your average user. You have to put aside what your own tendencies and pet peeves are and focus on how the average user will react.
From what most everyone is saying here, it seems that the average user (or at least, their traffic) really doesn't care one way or another if there's hyphens in a domain name.
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Unread 11th July 2010, 10:46 PM   #15
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

they are good for keywords . If you are trying to rank for the phrase "blue widgets", having blue-widgets.com is better than bluewidgets.com
people will not type in bluewidgets all one word.


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Unread 11th July 2010, 10:55 PM   #16
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

two thumbs up. i currently outrank a bunch of 2 and 3 word domains with dashes..
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Unread 11th July 2010, 11:02 PM   #17
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

I have used URLs with and without hyphens for many years. With hypens, people tend not to find my websites who are looking for them by name but the website's rank well in the search engines because of the use of keywords in the URL. Without hypens, I find more people can find my site because the URL is easier to remember and therefore type. I believe it may just be a personal preference.
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Unread 11th July 2010, 11:05 PM   #18
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

Dash in domain be ok as long as you kept it to minimum. Furthermore, it's quite bad for your domain branding.
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Unread 11th July 2010, 11:21 PM   #19
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

I found nothing difference in SEO perspective using them as well - yes for convenience it's better to avoid dashes

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Unread 12th July 2010, 12:30 AM   #20
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

Hyphenated or yourkeywordSomeword.com in my opinion won't rank as well as the keyword by itself w/a .com, net or org. Some of my keywords were already taken so i added an extra word in for a couple sites and they wouldn't rank as well as my sites that had just the keyword and similar competition/searches.

Just my experience..
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Unread 12th July 2010, 12:56 AM   #21
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

I believe Google sees that as Le Gos Et Sale
which is not what you would want anyhow, so misplacing the hyphens doesn't get you around brand names. It just keeps you from being found.

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Unread 12th July 2010, 12:57 AM   #22
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

It doesn't matter if you use dashed domains or not as long as you're backlinking it right

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Unread 12th July 2010, 01:04 AM   #23
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Default Re: Dashes In A Domain Name - Good or Bad?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoopatang View Post
I watched a video today of Matt Cutts from Google talking about getting good rankings and good traffic, and one of the things he specifically mentioned was having hyphens in your URL.

He said Google likes hyphens, as it makes it easier for the SE to determine what you're trying to say.
He used the example of ExpertsExchange.com.
The search engine can see that two ways: one as Experts Exchange. The other as Expert Sexchange.
HUGE difference there in meaning and what kind of traffic you'll be getting!

Personally, I see a hyphenated website URL in my search results and I avoid it like the plague; because in my long experience of being on the web I've learned that if it has hyphens in it, it's most likely some sales website built solely for the keywords by someone who doesn't know a thing about the topic but they've got a sponsor product matching that keyword phrase that they want to sell.

However, I am not your average user. You have to put aside what your own tendencies and pet peeves are and focus on how the average user will react.
From what most everyone is saying here, it seems that the average user (or at least, their traffic) really doesn't care one way or another if there's hyphens in a domain name.
The Matt Cutts comments make a lot of sense.

As an average user (I suppose), I don't care too much about the URL. If I'm going to follow your links it's going to be due to the content you have on your site, not the URL. If I'm going to choose your website out of the thousands that I see popping up in Google, it is more because of the title and the fact that you were next in line. I don't often look to see what the specific URL is.

As far as remembering it...I don't have to. If I like it, I'm going to bookmark it and when I want to go to it again I will use the bookmark. If I'm going to spread word about your site I'm more likely going to send someone a link and it likely doesn't matter how good or stupid your URL is, the fact that I am giving it my recommendation is going to make people click, not the name you paid for.

Just my .02
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