Thanks for reading my post.
I was inspired to write this thread after reading the ClickBump method.
I'll reprint his method for niche selection here:
- Only work with exact match, top level domains -.com, .net and .org
- Seek niches that have a minimum of 2400 EXACT match local monthly
- Look for three PR- or PR-0 sites in the top ten results on Google
- Launch a tightly focused, insanely optimized, seo savvy, css based site that showcases your niche's KWP with laser focus. One page of content with 350-1000 words and 3 site pages (about, contact and privacy) is all you need.
In my own SEO work, I have seen examples of .com and .net domain names bouncing to page 1 of Google overnight. So I know there is some truth to it. Lately I have been trying to think of why exactly Google seems to give such a high preference to exact match domain names.
Here are a few reasons I came up with:
Reason 1 - Web Browser interface ambiguity
First off, in my experience, there are a great many internet users who do not understand the difference between the three input edit boxes that Internet Explorer displays. (e.g. the URL address box, the quick search box, and the Google search box on the webpage itself). See below image:
I have tried repeatedly to explain to my own grandpa the difference between these 3 boxes, but he doesn't get it and never will.
Also note that these days, the browser's URL address box also acts as a search box -- if an exact URL format is not entered.
Reason 2 - The Web Browser is now used as an application starter
Possibly because of the above reasons (and because Google has the best spell checker in the world) millions of people think of Google, not as a search engine, but rather, as a "web application starter".
For example, consider the below Exact Match stats for the month of December 2009:
16,600,000 Face Book
24,900,000 Michael Jackson
3,350,000 Angelina Jolie
This means that last month, people went to Google, typed the word "facebook", and pressed enter, 506 million times. (That's 6 BILLION times a year).
Now obviously, the vast majority of these people were not looking for information on how to use facebook. Additionally, most of these people know that the facebook address is actually facebook.com. But they have stopped typing the dot com part! Instead, they have simply gotten used to clicking the first website link in the Google SERP.
So I think one of the reason why exact match domain names are given so much value by Google, is because Google understands that most people simply don't like to bookmark sites, nor type in the dot com extension.
Most people use Google as a "search engine" AND as a "URL parser" (a "Web application starter").
In other words, half of the time, the biggest search engine in the world is not a search engine at all! It's just adding a .com for people too lazy to type it.
If you think of all of the searches typed in to Google on any given month, I bet the majority of them are simply people asking Google to add a .com to their phrase. Google's job is to give people the website they seek. Usually the website a person seeks is simply this:
the actual word phrase typed in + a period + the .com or .net extension
Using this one VERY simple formula, you could actually probably do HALF of googles search load.
If you stop and think about this a moment, that's a pretty profound statement.
The engineers at google must know this. Hence another reason why exact match domains are so valued.
Reason 3 - Contrary to popular belief, competition is really quite beatable for the VAST majority of keywords
Question: When you tell people you work in "IM", or you are an "SEO guy", or an "Affiliate Marketer", how many people know what you're talking about?
Question: How many people here know that, before July of 2008 Google's Keyword Tool didn't even have search statistics on it! That was 18 months ago!
Point being, internet marketing is new. Very new. And, even most people who are internet savvy and own websites, still do not really even know or understand what these words mean:
- Anchor text
- Page Rank
- credit cards
- auto Insurance
- DUI Lawyer
- online dating
- make money online
Point being, simply by knowing a minimal amount of SEO, and owning the exact match URL, you are already giving Google most of what they are looking for.
Reason 4 - The big 3 SOC numbers
There is a reason why Google has given us the following functions:
Because, it is primarily via this method that ranking is determined. In a precise theoretical application of the PageRank algorithm, allinanchor should really be the only element that matters. And, as we can see when we type in the word "Click Here", it does indeed matter a great deal. "Click here" leads you to the Adobe Acrobat page. This page is not in any way optimized for the term "click here". Yet it ranks number one for it.
But look who is at position 2 on the Google page. ClickHere.com is. You can see, they even beat the Apple QuickTime viewer and several other Adobe pages. Now I seriously doubt that ClickHere.com has as many backlinks as Apple and Adobe. And yet, they are at position two.
Because they have the exact match domain name.
Reason 5 - If the domain is still available - this means something
Here's another reason why the ClickBump method works. You can consider the amount of domain names available for sale as another indicator of 'strength of competition'. For example, all of the domain names for the word "credit card" are gone. Credit cards are highly competitive. But if you find a keyword phrase, and its exact match .com or .net is still available, then this tells you no one has cared enough about the phrase yet to try to monetize it. Hence, just by virtue of the fact that the domain name is available at all, you know that the niche in question probably has very low competition. Else, the .com or .net domain names would have already been purchased.
Reason 6 - Google's Anchor Text inference engine
In a perfect world, whenever anyone links to you, they would do so using anchor text that precisely matches the keywords you are targeting.
Consider three examples of backlinks:
"My friend has the best website to BUY RED BASEBALL HATS in the world."
"In my opinion the coolest hats are at buyredbaseballhats.com."
"I like baseball hats. My friend has a neat website about them at baseballstuff.com."
Now of the top 3 links, which one do you think will get more Google juice for the phrase BUY RED BASEBALL HATS?
The first one obviously. But for the second one, eventhough this person didn't bother to make explicit anchor text, we can assume that Google is likely parsing the words in the URL, and infering the anchor text primarily based on the URL itself. (The contextual keywords are of GREAT importance too - in inferring the anchor text -- probably in some cases, almost more so than the anchor text itself.)
Point being, another reason why exact match domain names are a good idea is because they, in many ways, allow you to 'idiot proof' your backlinks. Meaning, for people who don't know how to make anchortext, and for people who can't be bothered to do so (like me), by having an exact match of your targeted word phrase in your URL, you force Google's hand here. You make sure that your incoming anchor text necessarily matches your targeted keyphrase -- because, well, your URL IS your targeted keyphrase.
And the point being
Ok so the bottom line is simple.
BUY EXACT MATCH DOMAIN NAMES
Ok but on the other hand
On the other hand, I am a big fan of Grizzly's blog (makemoneyforbeginners.blogspot.com) Grizz is an Adsense expert and a millionaire, and he is always in the top 4 slots for the term 'make money online' --so I listen to him.
And, Grizz rarely buys domain names. He does it all with free blogs! Pretty impressive.
His student Janet (who wrote a pretty good adsense book) is making 8,000 a month on Adsense and she does it all with free blogs too.
Grizz is all about backlinks backlinks backlinks. And he sets up microblogs where the first term in the URL matches the target keyword. Like runningshoes.blogspot.com or whatever.
Now he has access to a large farm of blogs and he is a talented backlink builder. So links aren't an issue for him. Ultimately , it is the backlinks the win the race.
We all know that the domain name isn't everything. Else, the first 3 results for every search would always be the .com .net and .org. However, the point of all this is to point out that, all things considered, the Google engine seems to be simply programmed to give exact match domain names "free points" -- that you wouldnt otherwise get if you just chose some random name or had a free blog.
So the question
I recently finished my own program that does the following.
1. Takes in hundreds of CSV files of Google Adsense data (from the Google keywordtool)
2. Sorts this list by projected monthly revenue
3. Grabs the 10 pagerank numbers of the top 10 URL's in Google
4. Determines if a .com, .net, or .org domain name is available
Because of this tool, I am able find thousands of keywords that pass the ClickBump formula in seconds (I just let it run over night and it sucks down data while I sleep).
e.g. The program looks for word phrases in which a few of the websites on page 1 of Google have a low PageRank. (This is very similar to the method used by TheKeywordAcademy as well.) Then it checks if the domain name is available for the keyword phrase.
I am about to do another bulk order of 50 domain names following the above outlined exact match methods. This is a bit pricey in terms of dollars and time and copywriting costs. Hence, I'd really like to get some input on the above musings.
Here are some questions to ponder:
Am I way off here? Any experienced SEO guys want to chime in here? Have you seen similar phenomena with .com .net and .org domain names in your industry?
Has anyone had similar luck with .biz domain names?
How about .info?
Is this just a 'what came first - chicken or egg' scenario? In other words, are our .com and .net domains ranking because google values these extensions? OR, are our .com and .net domains ranking because, the competition was REALLY low when we bought it. Else, the name wouldn't have been for sale to begin with - it would have been purchased years ago.
The site internetbs.net has some of the cheapest .com deals around. Anyone seen cheaper deals? Bulk pricing?