Registering Domains - 1 or 2 Years?

35 replies
Does registering a website's domain for two years make the site easier to rank with the search engines? Thanks.
#domains #registering #years
  • Profile picture of the author JamesW
    I have read numerous articles that suggest that registering for several years in advance will help you rank higher because it tells the search engines that you are a serious business that will be around for a long time.

    However I registered my main site for 10 years a while ago and didn't notice any major differences.
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  • Profile picture of the author garybooth
    No-one knows for sure, but there is a view that Google takes you a bit more seriously if you register your domain for a longer period, because it appears that you want to stick around for the long term.

    Personally, I can't imagine that this is very important in Google's eyes, so I wouldn't worry about it. I usually register for 2 years, because you often get a cheaper deal
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  • Profile picture of the author E. Brian Rose
    The registrants will have you believe that registering for two years is better than one. It's kind of like life insurance companies that try and convince you that one day you're going to die. What do they know.
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  • Profile picture of the author entrepreneurjay
    As long as its registered for more than 1 year the search engines take that into consideration when ranking your site. The longer the better if you can register it for 5 years in advance would be even better.

    A lot of spam sites are up for less than a year so if its registered for less than a year it looks like aa spam site in Googles eyes and it can go against you. If it looks like your site is gonna be around for the long haul its a bonus in Googles eyes Google takes all this into consideration when ranking your site. As long as it is registered for over a year you will be fine, that is the general rule.
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  • Profile picture of the author IndigoJack
    I never register a domain for less than two years. One year for a new domain is no time at all.

    Plus by registering for longer you save money by taking advantage of reduced fees on longer term purchases.
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  • Profile picture of the author dv8domainsDotCom
    Good writeup and matt cutts video on Does Domain Age Matter To Google? Will Maxing Out A Domain Name Help My Site? | Search Engine Optimization, Internet Marketing & Website Design Blog From Mannix Marketing ::
    Synopsis: they could, but it would be a minor glance, at best. Domain AGE is used, but not length of registration. Unfortunately, he does not come right out and say that they DON'T use length of registration in the PR algorithm, ("Short answer is, not to worry about that very much. Not very much at all, in fact"). This alludes that it would be unimportant, if used at all. It's unfortunate that Cutt's language is slightly ambiguous.

    The article does rightly state several good reasons to register for multiple years, including security (anyone who has had to "salvage" a domain and pay the redemption fee can vouch for this; it happens folks, and it'll cost YOU an extra 80+ bones after a certain grace-period, post-expiration). Another good reason is long term savings. If you have a good discount code that lets you renew for 7-8 bucks per year, then take it out for a little extra time. This is SAVING you 4-5 per year per domain, which adds up. You never LOSE time on domain registration, so if it's important, why not?? Also, you're locking in a lower rate and protecting your cost from future price increases (even an extra 1-2 dollars per year extra down the road means you are netting a LOSS of maybe 5-7 or so.)
    Simple answer: Not for SEO, but for cost savings and domain protection. Keep your investment and save money doing it. If it's a "taster" domain, 1-2 years is fine and I don't think you're penalized for doing just 1 year. I've had sites do just fine, short and long term for initial registration.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jazzman
    I had never thought of this question before now. I usually just renew my domain every year. I may have to rethink that now.
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  • Profile picture of the author Vijay M
    Some seo gurus do recommend registering for more than a year. Its supposed to be one other parameter which the SE's give a certain weight, while calculating the relevancy of the website for a search time.

    Jerry West recommends doing it in one of his newsletter.
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  • Profile picture of the author LauraJames
    I register domains for at least two years. I wish I knew whether the theory about longer registration times is valid.
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  • Profile picture of the author redfoxseo
    I would have to say the longer the better. It does show you are serious and I understand that Google does look at this.
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    • Profile picture of the author FredJones
      I don't know whether it matters. History (domain age) - yes. Future - people say it does but I have no idea personally. I have never noticed any change in rankings by extending my registration well in advance in any of my domains, if I remember correctly. But it may be that I was not paying enough attention - who knows !!

      But personally, if your comfort factor about a niche is not strong enough that you shall remain profitable for 2 years then I don't believe you should go for it. I personally prefer working in niches in which I could work for the whole of my life and feel comfortable about it - else I would not invest even a few minutes into it.
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  • Profile picture of the author wasblue
    My personal experience shows that it doesn't matter. I register everything for one year and I have sites that I can't find on Google and sites on the first page of Google. So spending money on extra years doesn't hold water with me.
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  • Profile picture of the author tylerhamilton
    I've always just done the one year with auto re-register.. when i started with my first domain i did the one year just cause i was short on funding... i just never changed my method!

    Even with the one year registration i've always had great google indexing. No issues.
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  • Profile picture of the author NetGrid
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    • I usually buy for 1 year but it seems to be cheaper if you buy for multiple years. As far as ranking your site I don't think it makes a big difference.
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  • Profile picture of the author paulie888
    I've found from personal experience that it doesn't really matter when it comes to search engine ranking. The only real difference is that you save a little if you register for a longer term.

    Paul
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  • Profile picture of the author phpnetpro
    Yea, I think this is a myth. I have someone ask me this question at least once a month and I always tell them it's bogus.

    Sure, it could have some kind of minor boost in a search engine like Google, but I still kinda doubt it. I think this is IM voodoo put out there by the domain name registrars, LOL.

    I can say from experience that you don't need to register a domain name for more than a year to get top ten google rankings. I have NEVER registered a domain for more than a year to start. I only register it for more if it makes money in it's first year. Unless it shows some really good potential and hasn't made money in it's first year, it gets shut down (unless it has traffic or rankings, then I do other things with it).
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  • Profile picture of the author homeworkin
    I already save money on registrations due to GoDaddy's domain club thing. So, makes no difference to me for cost - except for when there are increases. I have not seen any difference in SEO for those domains registered for one year or more years. Google probably does look at it as one of many factors. They could even weight it more for spammy industries. But, since they are not going to tell us and no one seems to have much proof, I would only consider it if the domain is new and you are trying to rank quickly for something that could be seen as iffy.
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  • Profile picture of the author Adam James
    Cant see why it would matter I always go for one then if the domain is no good you can just get rid of it, I have bought plenty that sounded great at the time but then change my mind and never used them how many of you have done that? I bet I am not alone.
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    • Profile picture of the author Jeff Henshaw
      Does registering a website's domain for two years make the site easier to rank with the search engines?
      If the search engines and/or directories take the trouble to search the 'who is' or whatever, in order to establish who the owner is and how long they have registered a particular domain, then they will have a reason for doing so. Quite frankly I see no reason for them doing it, unless there are black listed domain owners.

      The primary function of the search engines and/or directories is to ensure that those millions upon millions of people who use them, get proper and relevant links (results and answers) for the search terms used. The duration of a domain ownership seems irrelevant IMHO.

      Perhaps I am wrong in doing this, but I only purchase domains for a year and then renew year by year. If I purchased for a longer period then you can bet your sweet life that I would forget to renew some - reminders or not!

      Just my thoughts,

      Jeff.
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  • Profile picture of the author jasonmorgan
    Dipping my toes into the doesn't make any difference pool.

    However, if your an IM baller you might as well register for a longer duration. Get the long term discount and be done with it. If there is an SEO benefit then you'll get that too.

    You can also (at least with godaddy) change your domains to the same registration date (it will cost you a couple of bucks).

    All of my sites are due on Dec 31 so it makes it a lot easier to keep track of and renewing domains. Keeps everything simple and I only have to deal with one big bill for all of my domains... no more domains randomly needing renewal throughout the year which is a pain to keep track of.
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  • Profile picture of the author Slade556
    I have tried both short term and long term registering of domains and haven't noticed a vast difference. It is said that search engines like the domains that are registered long term but what I know much more resolutely is that they like the keyword in the url and domain age more. Old domains can rank very easily with the right promotion so if you are in this for the long haul and have your sights set on the perfect domain, I would go ahead and register it long term to take advantage of this in the future.
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    • Profile picture of the author paulie888
      Originally Posted by Slade556 View Post

      I have tried both short term and long term registering of domains and haven't noticed a vast difference. It is said that search engines like the domains that are registered long term but what I know much more resolutely is that they like the keyword in the url and domain age more. Old domains can rank very easily with the right promotion so if you are in this for the long haul and have your sights set on the perfect domain, I would go ahead and register it long term to take advantage of this in the future.
      Another way to go about this is to search for dropped domains that would fit your intent for your website. All things being equal, a keyword rich aged domain will have higher authority and standing in Google's eyes than a brand new (unregistered) one.

      Paul
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      • Profile picture of the author thriftgirl62
        This advice comes straight from a Google employee. They have never put anything in writing one way or the other so common sense rules this one. It only makes a difference the very first year. Newly registered sites can be mistaken for spam sites unless their domain is registered for an additional (1) year. Now you know why so many complain about their sites making little or no progress during that first year??

        After that, age matters but number of years registered? Not so much. . . unless every other aspect of two sites is exactly the same. However, you should follow the wise words of Jerry West and trust nobody, not even Matt Cutts. Test, Test, Test and only trust your data or join his $97/mo 500TS Club for the nerdy privileged geeks, elite mathematicians and scientific equation experts.
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  • Profile picture of the author goodman441
    register for one year, if you make money with it the first year, renew for more years, if not sell!
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  • Profile picture of the author bulkpr
    The age matters, it just doesn't matter a lot. It's weighed in among with a bunch of other criterias.
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  • Profile picture of the author PvPGuy
    Well, it appears the consensus answer is "maybe, a little."

    It's +$12 bucks. Lock it up!
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  • Profile picture of the author Gene Pimentel
    The bottom line is, it doesn't matter enough for you to use it as a criteria in your decision-making process for trying to rank better.

    As dv8domainsDotCom said above, the AGE plays a part (history), not so much the number of years you're registering it for.
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  • Profile picture of the author mindi9
    Domain registered for more than one year shows that you are serious about it. However even I found that it dose not matter much when it comes to search engine ranking. As goodman441 said , if goal is to sell the site then one year is preferred.
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  • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
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    Originally Posted by PaulintheSticks View Post

    Does registering a website's domain for two years make the site easier to rank with the search engines? Thanks.
    That's the rumor but I haven't noticed that personally. I register one year at a time. I may sell the site or decide I'm not interested in the niche so don't want to waste money on multiple years that I may not use.
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  • Profile picture of the author vivaarturo
    domain age matters but only on authority of a site that is hosted. there is no impact if you register for 1, 2 or more years. Focus on building a quality site with good content and you will rank

    cheers
    Arturo
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Meaney
    A few years ago it used to be an indication of how serious you are about the site.. that might have changed over the years and it probably also depends on what the sites in your niche are doing.
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