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Old 27th May 2009, 02:12 PM   #1
ASpaventa
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Default Transfering Content To New Domain

I have a client whose company name is not branded and does not explain what they do. Let's say, for example, the company name was Box and they sell water bottles. Their URL is Box.com. Because of this, it's hard to get them to rank for their more competitive keywords, like water bottles, plastic water bottles, etc.

I have bought a more KW rich URL, like BoxWaterBottles.com and I'd like to make this their home site and have the Box.com address 301 redirect.

I have a running list of things I need to keep in mind to make this move successful, but I was wondering what would be on the top of your list?

Thanks!

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Old 27th May 2009, 04:05 PM   #2
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Well, redirect links won't be indexed on google...

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Old 27th May 2009, 07:19 PM   #3
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Maybe a sub domain off of box.com such as waterbottles.box.com might be easier than a new url and all the head aches that come with that?

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Old 27th May 2009, 08:34 PM   #4
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But will that have the same SEO value? I'm not sure how Google compares domain vs subdomain. I'd have to think domain is still stronger. Luckily in this situation the current site doesn't rank but for longtail keywords.

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Old 28th May 2009, 05:21 PM   #5
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Stop. Now. Before you shoot your client (and yourself) in the foot.

The domain name does not carry the SEO weight you seem to think it does. You might want to check this to learn more about factors that weigh more heavily, and what the 35 recognized search industry experts surveyed think about the value of a so-called "keyword rich domain" (and the reasons for whatever value it might have):
http://www.seomoz.org/article/search-ranking-factors

Bottom line, it is almost certainly not the lack of keywords in the domain name that's making it hard to rank for more competitive terms.

Company names are almost by definition brandable. "Brand" doesn't have anything to do with keywords. In fact, generic "keyword" phrases are pretty much the opposite of brandable, because instead of being unique to the company in question (like the company's name) they can be used by anybody.

Think about the big brands. Does the word "Exxon" say anything about oil refining or gasoline? Do the words "Target" and "Wal Mart" in and of themselves say anything about discount retailing? What does the word "Amazon" have to do with books or online selling? And yet, when you hear these non-keyword-words, it's likely the first thing you think of is the company in question, and what it does. That is branding.

There's nothing stopping you from optimizing for words and phrases other than the company name, using other factors that carry much more weight than the domain name (page title tag, on page text, anchor text of links pointing to the page, etc.) More competitive keywords are going to be harder to optimize for -- for the most competitive, you will have to get more factors right and put in a lot more work. Nature of the beast.

But having keywords in the domain is not some sort of magical silver bullet. In fact, because it means you're effectively saying every page of the site is about the same few keywords, you could be making your job harder in the long run. Each page should be optimized for 2-3 key phrases, different phrases for each page. If you want to get key phrases into your URLs, use your folder and file names to do so, not the domain, so you can target different keywords on each page. (Keep in mind, if you change the file or folder names of existing pages, you need to 301 redirect the old page URLs to the new ones to avoid broken links and to keep the SEs from getting confused.)

A big problem with keyword-focused domains is that they don't age well. Keep in mind, what the company makes/sells now may not be what they're making/selling in the future. And even if they continue to sell the same products, the market can change. The words and phrases customers use to search for those products today may not be the words and phrases they use tomorrow.

You simply cannot run around changing the domain name every time the company changes their product mix or their customers change their minds. Down that road lies insanity.

Why?

Because when you change the domain name, you will incur issues with the search engines. Yes, you can use 301 redirects to make sure visitors reach the new pages and to (eventually) transfer link juice from the old domain to the new.

But it will take time for the SEs to sort out the changes, and in the meantime, the site will take a hit in rankings and traffic. And there's no guarantee the rankings will fully recover after the change. (No guarantee they won't, either, of course, but why take a chance if you don't have to?)

If you have a well-performing site that's got a bit of age on it and a modicum of links pointing to it, IMHO you'd be nuts to change it just because of some misguided notion of having a "keyword-rich" domain. Optimize the pages you have; create new pages to optimize them for additional phrases; use your site navigation to spread the link love around to all these pages.

I promise you by effectively optimizing the site they already have, you will do as well (or better) than you'd do by embarking on an ill-advised scheme for moving them to another domain.

My

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Old 28th May 2009, 05:40 PM   #6
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torka explains it well.
IF you have an exact keyword match it can help in the beginning.....for that exact phrase, but not always.
When we started gambling [dot] com we did not come up first for the placements regarding gambling. And this was years ago before much SEO had evolved to today's standards.

It took us considerable effort to make the grade. Once we did it was golden, but I remember many 80 hours+ per week networking and promoting.

I think the main reason keyword rich domains can benefit is because many people will link back by your domain name. But having a domain name of "howtopickappleswithoutworms" can be a very hard name to brand. Something catchy is often better.
I did get lucky with my new project as I found the domain for what I was targeting. But those are few and far in between.

The best of luck to you.

Ken

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Old 28th May 2009, 07:03 PM   #7
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I have to disagree some. Same situation as is going on in the other discussion on this topic in the other thread.

Example....StainlessCages.com I have only ever optimized this site for the keyword stainless steel bird cage(s). All anchor text of inbound links, internal links, etc have stainless steel bird cages in them. Currently I rank 11 i believe for that keyword. Stopped this project when economy slowed down.

I have never done any optimizing for the term Stainless Cages what so ever. No inbound links or internal links with that anchor text. In fact other than the URL I dont think the keyword Stainless Cages appears on that site. However I have a double listing at #1 & #2 for that keyword in google.

So this of course begs the question, why do I rank for a keyword that I have never optimized the site for? The only conclusion I have been able to come up with is the URL. I'm certainly open to suggestions from people smarter than I (love the SEOmoz people!) why this occurred but to date no one has been able to provide a reasonable explanation for this.

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Old 28th May 2009, 08:51 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmacek07 View Post
I have to disagree some. Same situation as is going on in the other discussion on this topic in the other thread.

Example....StainlessCages.com I have only ever optimized this site for the keyword stainless steel bird cage(s). All anchor text of inbound links, internal links, etc have stainless steel bird cages in them. Currently I rank 11 i believe for that keyword. Stopped this project when economy slowed down.

I have never done any optimizing for the term Stainless Cages what so ever. No inbound links or internal links with that anchor text. In fact other than the URL I dont think the keyword Stainless Cages appears on that site. However I have a double listing at #1 & #2 for that keyword in google.

So this of course begs the question, why do I rank for a keyword that I have never optimized the site for? The only conclusion I have been able to come up with is the URL. I'm certainly open to suggestions from people smarter than I (love the SEOmoz people!) why this occurred but to date no one has been able to provide a reasonable explanation for this.
But you do have stainless steel bird cages which contain the words "Stainless Cages". Anchoring for Apple Pie is also targeting "Apple" and "Pie".
I also understand that surrounding text has an influence. So "enclosure" would also translate into cage.

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Old 28th May 2009, 11:15 PM   #9
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consider buying an older domain from one of the domain brokerage sites....

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Old 29th May 2009, 02:31 AM   #10
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This is foolish to change the domain name just for adding some keywords in it. You can do it if you like but you will lose PR value, inbound links, online reputation that you have built in favor of that website and lots more. Though there will not any duplicate content issue, you should not do that. In stead I would rather suggest you to add keywords in the content and in the meta title that you will be effective.
Just imagine if you change your targeted keywords would you opt for another domain????????????????????????????:fry ingpan1:

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