[EMD] Exact Match Domains are "dead"? I cry BULLSH!T...see the proof here

42 replies
  • SEO
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So I was just looking at some of the domains I've got lying around and ready to go (wordpress installed but no content), and had to post this.....I've got a site that all I did was install wordpress on and it shows up on the first page of google search.

Granted its not a term that is regularly searched for but the ONLY thing I have with that keyword is the site title and the domain name....

For those preaching that EMDs are dead....I cry "BULLSH!T"!!!!

See www.stupidsimpleonlineincome.com

Then see it here (or verify it yourself by typing into google "stupid simple online income" - without the quotes so you know its not just an exact phrase search): What Page of Google Am I On? - A Free SEO Tool and Rank Tracker - stupid simple online income / www.stupidsimpleonlineincome.com

The thing is, I've got more domains like this too....and they don't even have wordpress installed, they're PARKED....

Here's another example that might make you rethink EMDs:

Check out www.affiliatecashcraze.com (full disclosure, I will be developing this soon but as of writing this, THERE ISN'T EVEN WORDPRESS INSTALLED ON IT.)

Now do a search in google for affiliate cash craze - see me there? #2 in google?? Can you explain that???

I'm putting my helmet on now, so all you haters can beat me over the head why you think EMDs are dead but the proof is in the pudding. They're still alive and kicking!
#bullshtsee #cry #dead #domains #emd #exact #exact domain name #exact match domain #exact match domain names #exact match domains #match #proof
  • Profile picture of the author writeaway
    It's only dead if you build THIN CONTENT SITES. If you are actually going to build a site that ADDS VALUE to the lives of your visitors, EMD and any other domain 'still work.' Still, looking at Google Adwords Campaign planner for your keyword, it looks like there isn't much search volume for 'stupid simple online income' or 'affiliate cash craze.' Maybe OP's point would have better legs if he focuses on more lucractive longtail keywords, hmmm? Just saying.
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  • Profile picture of the author KloudStrife
    Absolutely. EMD were never dead brother, they just get better with age like good whiskey
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  • Profile picture of the author Joan Altz
    Unless you put some original content on those, they'll all be de-indexed within a year and become useless.

    Edited to Add: I've even had emds #1 for the primary keyword AND with original content that were de-indexed after a full year because of over-optimization, and those emds were much, much better than yours and the sites made money daily.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tsnyder
    Are you serious?

    This reminds me of a local used car dealer who once asked
    me what I might be able to do for him to increase the amount of
    business he gets from internet searches.

    After suggesting a number of SEO strategies that could help he
    told me he didn't need any of "that stuff" because he's already number
    one in the "Google search."

    He then proceeded to type his name into the search box and. lo and
    behold, his name came up first in the SERP.

    I just shook my head and asked him who's name he expected to come up.

    I'd ask you the same question... I doubt that exact match phrase gets
    any measurable amount of searches so what did you expect? What other
    site should have come up?

    Your "proof" is less than persuasive.
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    • Profile picture of the author Steven Wagenheim
      Originally Posted by Tsnyder View Post

      Are you serious?

      This reminds me of a local used car dealer who once asked
      me what I might be able to do for him to increase the amount of
      business he gets from internet searches.

      After suggesting a number of SEO strategies that could help he
      told me he didn't need any of "that stuff" because he's already number
      one in the "Google search."

      He then proceeded to type his name into the search box and. lo and
      behold, his name came up first in the SERP.

      I just shook my head and asked him who's name he expected to come up.

      I'd ask you the same question... I doubt that exact match phrase gets
      any measurable amount of searches so what did you expect? What other
      site should have come up?

      Your "proof" is less than persuasive.
      I didn't want to say it. I'm glad you did. The irony is, he talks about BS but this thread is the biggest bunch of BS of all.

      Where's the face palm emoticon when you need one?
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      • Profile picture of the author Steve B
        I guess I have a somewhat "tempered" view of the debate about EMDs.

        Pro
        • Yes, you can rank for long tail keyword phrases, sometimes very easily
        • Yes, they do describe your site subject if well chosen
        • Yes, you could get some organic traffic if the name is accurate for the subject
        • Yes, short EMDs (especially dot coms) are scarce and so maybe have some resale value
        Cons
        • Long tail EMDs that are rarely-to-never searched are not too brandable as they're difficult to remember
        • No, long tail EMDs that are rarely searched will not bring you any more targeted traffic than non-EMDs
        • Long tail EMDs have no intrinsic value - they are not "worth" any more than longtail non-EMDs
        • Long tail EMDs often tend to appear more "spammy" IMO than shorter domains (whether Google feels that way, I don't know)
        For me, the bottom line and most powerful argument is whether the EMD brings you organic traffic because it is being searched on by targeted prospects. If it does, great! Go ahead and use it. If it doesn't, IMO, you'd be better off using a shorter, more brandable non-EMD.

        The best to all of you,

        Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author mdrosenkrans
    I'm fully aware there is NO search volume (except for those reading this post lol) for these phrases, and yes I agree with you Joan, if I leave them the way they are its just a matter of time before they're de-indexed....BUT

    Doesn't this prove that those screaming about the death of EMDs are dead wrong?

    Tsnyder - I'm not saying this is all you have to do to rank a site. And I'm not saying that this is the end all be all of SEO. All I'm saying is that EMDs are clearly NOT dead as I've heard so many times on these forums....thats it, nothing more, nothing less.
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    • Profile picture of the author CyberAlien
      Originally Posted by mdrosenkrans View Post

      I'm fully aware there is NO search volume (except for those reading this post lol) for these phrases, and yes I agree with you Joan, if I leave them the way they are its just a matter of time before they're de-indexed....BUT

      Doesn't this prove that those screaming about the death of EMDs are dead wrong?

      Tsnyder - I'm not saying this is all you have to do to rank a site. And I'm not saying that this is the end all be all of SEO. All I'm saying is that EMDs are clearly NOT dead as I've heard so many times on these forums....thats it, nothing more, nothing less.
      Sure they are dead. That may work on stupid search terms like in the example you have, but not with competitive ones. The point of EMDs was to rank quickly and easily for competitive phrases, which they don't do anymore.

      I'll make it simple: if they still work, do the same thing for a highly competitive keyword and see if you still show up on the first page.
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    • Profile picture of the author Joan Altz
      Originally Posted by mdrosenkrans View Post

      I'm fully aware there is NO search volume (except for those reading this post lol) for these phrases, and yes I agree with you Joan, if I leave them the way they are its just a matter of time before they're de-indexed....BUT

      Doesn't this prove that those screaming about the death of EMDs are dead wrong?
      Well, you're right that EMDs aren't dead as far as serp potential. They just require a lot more care in how you do it. The best emds currently aren't long tail, but short emds that are brandable.
      Then add original content, don't over-optimize (especially in the resulting urls of your category/posts - overuse of your emd keywords in the urls are a definite no-no), and with some natural backlinks added, you could be in really good shape.
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    • Profile picture of the author cbpayne
      Originally Posted by mdrosenkrans View Post

      Doesn't this prove that those screaming about the death of EMDs are dead wrong?
      nope..... correlation does not imply causation.
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  • Profile picture of the author greatdn
    I have to agree, exact match domain will always have great value. However, when it comes to SEO, if you are trying to get the most amount of traffic and market coverage as you want, the name doesn't mean anything. You can rank 17893884993004.com for the same keywords as your exact match domain. Thing is, who cares if you rank for the EMD keyword if nobody searches for it and you get no traffic. Now having said this. EMD's that have a high search rating and are high competition are definately worth having. But if your EMD has any competition what so ever you will still have to do seo to rank, or you will be like many others and stay at the bottom of the serps watching your competition chissel away the gold.
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  • Profile picture of the author mdrosenkrans
    LOL Steven - I knew I'd catch some flack for this post, but saying its BS? C'mon!

    All I am setting out to prove is that EMDs are not dead - if you can prove otherwise, I'd love to see it. I'm completely open to hearing anyone's thoughts on this and/or seeing anything that disproves this.

    Again, an EMD for a keyword with decent search volume that has a site with no or thin content will NOT rank like these have....that's not what I'm saying.

    What I'm saying is that EMDs are not dead.

    So if you've got an EMD and you've been hesitant to build a site on it because everyone is proclaiming they are of no value - go ahead and build the site, make it valuable to the end user with quality content on it and the EMD will only help you rank...
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    • Profile picture of the author Steven Wagenheim
      Originally Posted by mdrosenkrans View Post

      LOL Steven - I knew I'd catch some flack for this post, but saying its BS? C'mon!

      All I am setting out to prove is that EMDs are not dead - if you can prove otherwise, I'd love to see it. I'm completely open to hearing anyone's thoughts on this and/or seeing anything that disproves this.

      Again, an EMD for a keyword with decent search volume that has a site with no or thin content will NOT rank like these have....that's not what I'm saying.

      What I'm saying is that EMDs are not dead.

      So if you've got an EMD and you've been hesitant to build a site on it because everyone is proclaiming they are of no value - go ahead and build the site, make it valuable to the end user with quality content on it and the EMD will only help you rank...
      For that matter, any URL with relevant content that will give the end user/visitor a positive experience, is not dead. If that's your point, that an EMD with "good" content won't be penalized, well that's kind of a duh statement.

      What has stopped working as far as EMDs are the days where you put up a crappy site with some Adsense and raked in the dough. You can't do that anymore. But then again, you can't do that with any URL today.

      So in essence, this thread isn't really saying anything other than "Build a good site with relevant content and you can rank regardless of your domain name."

      Well, duh!
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  • Profile picture of the author MarketingBees
    Those EMDs aren't exactly keywords though. I think that's what people are more concerned about. Having a domain "KitchenMixerReviews.com" and then spending all your SEO efforts ranking for Kitchen Mixer Reviews is what can no longer happen.

    The domains you mentioned could be brands. eBay are always going to rank for eBay. Amazon for Amazon. And Warrior Forum for Warrior Forum.
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  • Profile picture of the author SuperKC
    I have over 9,000 EMDs in my network.. they are far from dead but like anything.. has to have unique content, backlinks, and be managed properly with the right keyword density.. otherwise ya its garbage.
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  • Profile picture of the author Nuno
    EMDs were never dead, over optimization was always the problem (especially when they get exact match anchor text backlinks).
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  • Profile picture of the author SuperKC
    I would agree -- you have to balance out EMDs.. if your going to keep doing it then get yourself a good domain maturing platform espectually if your managing hundreds of them.
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  • Profile picture of the author mdrosenkrans
    Points well taken Steve B and MarketingBees!

    MarketingBees - I understand that someone won't easily rank for "kitchen mixer reviews" just having kitchenmixerreviews.com but wouldn't it still help them when the right content and SEO is employed?

    For example - 2 identical sites, identical SEO work done, etc but one is kitchenmixerreviews.com and another is mixyourstuff.com, which one will rank higher? From what I see, it would be the EMD...
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  • Profile picture of the author mdrosenkrans
    Steven - I'm not saying that at all.

    This thread isn't about ranking a site "regardless of your domain name" (Well, duh!)

    I'm saying that a site (with or without relevant content) on an EMD will rank higher than the exact same site without an EMD. And I could be wrong! But from what I've posted, I don't see how (and I'm still very open to seeing any type of proof to the contrary).

    And just to be clear, I am a far cry from any type of SEO expert and never claimed to be. I just found something that disproved what has been reiterated here on the forums countless times and thought I'd share my findings for those interested...
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    • Profile picture of the author DConny1
      Originally Posted by mdrosenkrans View Post


      I'm saying that a site (with or without relevant content) on an EMD will rank higher than the exact same site without an EMD.
      I don't mean to bring this thread alive again but is the above statement true? Just curious.
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      • Profile picture of the author nettiapina
        Some good debunking in this thread. I also agree that EMDs do work, but the effect of an EMD isn't as strong as it once was. There's always one-line warriors and snakeoil salesmen who misinterpret Google's changes for stupidity and profit. Not referring to anyone in this thread obviously.

        Originally Posted by DConny1 View Post

        I don't mean to bring this thread alive again but is the above statement true? Just curious.
        If you're targeting actual keywords that have strong search competition the effect of an EMD is very small compared to everything else you can do. And if your EMD sounds spammy it probably works against you. After all you're trying to get real users to your site.

        I might actually accept the statement, but still recommend that you don't waste time trying to game Google with EMDs. If you take one input of a large black box algorithm and discuss it in this manner it's usually more of an thought experiment than something you can actually prove.
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      • Profile picture of the author kid3378
        Originally Posted by DConny1 View Post

        I don't mean to bring this thread alive again but is the above statement true? Just curious.
        Neigh. EMD has been devaluated. Google wanted to look for brands - EMD or not. EMD may still have some value but it won't totally shoot the website in the ranking compared to the previous years.

        If someone would want to appear and dominate in the searches, he must build a strong brand.
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  • Profile picture of the author MikeFriedman
    And if you buy www. afkjeoirabvklaieaow.com, I bet it ranks on the first page for the search "afkjeoirabvklaieaow".

    So what?

    Your "proof", and I use that term loosely, does not show that EMD's have or have not lost value. It just proves that one can rank for a term nobody in the world is searching for with an EMD. You could also probably rank just as easily for the same term without the EMD and just with using that phrase as the title tag.

    Google has to show some result.

    I do not know anyone who has said that EMD's are dead though. However, Google does not give them any kind of artificial boost like they used to.

    And if you want to find a legitimate example of an EMD ranking, Google "pregnancy". At least that is a worthwhile, often searched, term versus what you used.
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  • Profile picture of the author yukon
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    Your like the only person on the net targeting that exact keyword phrase "affiliate cash craze".

    Change this forum thread title to the exact keyword phrase & this thread will probably rank #1 without quotes.
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  • Profile picture of the author mdrosenkrans
    Mike, that isn't even a word so I'm not sure how that disproves anything. But you make a very good point that google has to show something when I type that search term in - but why would they show something that isn't even a real site (like affiliatecashcraze.com) in their search terms? And I am frankly surprised that you never heard anyone say EMDs are dead though...it's been a fairly common debate for almost 2 yrs now, ever since something Matt Cutts said about the matter.

    yukon - Yes, I believe I mentioned that nobody (outside of myself and maybe somebody reading this post) is searching for those terms. What shocked me (and the reason I posted this in the first place), was that a site with absolutely no content, even a domain without a site on it would rank in google AT ALL, let alone on the first page...

    cbpayne - Absolutely true, correlation does not imply causation. But do you have any other way to explain why an empty "site" (if you can even call it that) would show up for any search term like affiliatecashcraze.com is? What do you see as the cause for this other than an EMD still has value in the eyes of google?
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    • Profile picture of the author MikeFriedman
      Originally Posted by mdrosenkrans View Post

      Mike, that isn't even a word so I'm not sure how that disproves anything.
      And the example you used is not a legitimate search term, so it also proves nothing. That was the point.

      Originally Posted by mdrosenkrans View Post

      And I am frankly surprised that you never heard anyone say EMDs are dead though...it's been a fairly common debate for almost 2 yrs now
      Sorry. Let me rephrase that. I have never heard anyone worth listening to in the SEO world say that EMDs are dead. Have they lost value? Certainly. They used to provide a much bigger boost in Google than they do today. You can still rank with an EMD just fine. You just are not getting the same artificial boost you did 2 years ago.

      Also, you should have created that site without the title tag. How do you know it is not ranking based on the title tag versus the EMD.

      So yeah, this thread is pretty much useless and proves absolutely nothing.
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    • Profile picture of the author yukon
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      Originally Posted by mdrosenkrans View Post

      What shocked me (and the reason I posted this in the first place), was that a site with absolutely no content, even a domain without a site on it would rank in google AT ALL, let alone on the first page...
      You have the domain name (keyword) in the page titles, that's still on-page text.

      Again, zero exact competition & nobody searching for the keyword.
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  • Profile picture of the author GyuMan82
    EMDs are not dead, they still provide a boost albeit a trivial one.

    It really comes down to what you want.

    Do you want that trivial boost with a stupid sounding domain name, or would you forgo the boost for a more brandable domain name.
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  • Profile picture of the author mdrosenkrans
    GyuMan82 - Very well put and a well thought out question for anyone reading this (although I don't think all EMDs would be a stupid sounding domain name, even if the examples may be).

    There is (again, in my opinion based on what I've shown here) obviously a boost for an EMD and like you said it may not be a large boost at that, but I just aimed to dispel all the talk about EMDs actually being dead and not helping rankings at all....

    I do want to thank you and EVERY other person that's posted here, whether you agree with my post or not, I appreciate the input and welcome the discussion on the topic!
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  • Profile picture of the author Ryan Rush
    I totally agree with you, emds are actually very much alive. There are tons of them still ranking right now.
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    • Profile picture of the author cbpayne
      Originally Posted by Ryan Rush View Post

      I totally agree with you, emds are actually very much alive. There are tons of them still ranking right now.
      Whoever is running around saying that they can't be ranked?
      How do you know that they are ranking because of the EMD or not for some other reason?
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      • Profile picture of the author Ryan Rush
        Originally Posted by cbpayne View Post

        Whoever is running around saying that they can't be ranked?
        How do you know that they are ranking because of the EMD or not for some other reason?
        There are quite a few marketers that claim exact match domains are dead, I don't want to start saying names but if you search around you will find them.

        I don't quite understand your second question, I didn't say they are ranking because they are an EMD, what I said is that are they are just ranking period. There are a lot of posts claiming that google penalizes EMDs, but in reality they still rank but just not as fast and easily as before.
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        • Profile picture of the author cbpayne
          Originally Posted by Ryan Rush View Post

          There are quite a few marketers that claim exact match domains are dead, I don't want to start saying names but if you search around you will find them
          I have never seen anyone worth listening to claim that..
          Originally Posted by Ryan Rush View Post

          I don't quite understand your second question, I didn't say they are ranking because they are an EMD, what I said is that are they are just ranking period. There are a lot of posts claiming that google penalizes EMDs, but in reality they still rank but just not as fast and easily as before.
          If an EMD domain ranks well, is it ranking well because its an EMD or because of a lot of other reasons (ie relevant to query; backlink profile etc)
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          • Profile picture of the author Ryan Rush
            Originally Posted by cbpayne View Post

            I have never seen anyone worth listening to claim that..If an EMD domain ranks well, is it ranking well because its an EMD or because of a lot of other reasons (ie relevant to query; backlink profile etc)
            Usually when an Emd is ranking it's because it also has good content, good on page seo, and good backlinks. At least that's what I have seen.
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            • Profile picture of the author cbpayne
              Originally Posted by Ryan Rush View Post

              Usually when an Emd is ranking it's because it also has good content, good on page seo, and good backlinks. At least that's what I have seen.
              Thats exactly my point. It is not evidence that the site ranks becasue its an EMD....its probably evidence that it is ranking despite being an EMD
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              • Profile picture of the author Mike Anthony
                Sounds like people thought EMDs were penalized. No good SEO ever said that but as others have pointed out the OP's proof really isn't any such thing.
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  • Profile picture of the author yukon
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    exact-match-domains-are-dead-i-cry-bullshit-see-the-proof-here.com is still available.
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    • Profile picture of the author kid3378
      Originally Posted by yukon View Post

      exact-match-domains-are-dead-i-cry-bullshit-see-the-proof-here.com is still available.
      Hahahaha roflmao >_<

      Thats exactly my point. It is not evidence that the site ranks because its an EMD....its probably evidence that it is ranking despite being an EMD
      spot on. its probably ranking because there are less pages competing for such terms.
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    • Profile picture of the author mdrosenkrans
      First of all, in the interest of full disclosure, and as I stated in my original post I am currently developing the second example site (the one that previously had NO pages, NO title tags, NO website, NOTHING at all but STILL ranked).

      Originally Posted by MikeFriedman View Post

      And the example you used is not a legitimate search term, so it also proves nothing. That was the point.



      Sorry. Let me rephrase that. I have never heard anyone worth listening to in the SEO world say that EMDs are dead. Have they lost value? Certainly. They used to provide a much bigger boost in Google than they do today. You can still rank with an EMD just fine. You just are not getting the same artificial boost you did 2 years ago.

      Also, you should have created that site without the title tag. How do you know it is not ranking based on the title tag versus the EMD.

      So yeah, this thread is pretty much useless and proves absolutely nothing.
      And as I mentioned, I am fully aware nobody is searching for these phrases. What I found of interest was there was no nothing in my second example (no pages, no title tags, no nothing....but still ranking). And you could be absolutely right, maybe nobody worth listening to ever said that but I've heard it plenty of times (as I'm sure you have also).

      Originally Posted by cbpayne View Post

      Whoever is running around saying that they can't be ranked?
      How do you know that they are ranking because of the EMD or not for some other reason?
      What other reason could a site with only a db ranking 2nd position be accredited to?

      Originally Posted by yukon View Post

      You have the domain name (keyword) in the page titles, that's still on-page text.

      Again, zero exact competition & nobody searching for the keyword.
      Second example had no pages, let alone page titles....

      Originally Posted by Mike Anthony View Post

      Sounds like people thought EMDs were penalized. No good SEO ever said that but as others have pointed out the OP's proof really isn't any such thing.
      Again, I'm definitely not any type of SEO expert or could even hold a candle to the SEO knowledge of anyone else that's posted in this thread but we all know there has been much talk about EMDs being dead, ie not helping rankings (some talk also about being penalized but rarely).

      Originally Posted by yukon View Post

      exact-match-domains-are-dead-i-cry-bullshit-see-the-proof-here.com is still available.
      Thanks yukon, gotta give credit where credit is due and that literally made me lol
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  • Profile picture of the author marketingmonster
    I've done the experiment on my own with EMD and at first it gets ranked than go down. It worked before but it has gone down. The problem is if you are writing a post with the exact keywords included plus you have it in the domain.com part it is like double keyword and starts getting flagged.
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