Owning keyword domains isn’t helping your SEO; you’re just wasting money

Domain aliases are great tools to have in your arsenal. Whether it’s because you’ve changed your domain name, are preventing typo squatting, or just wanted to have a more memorable domain act as a redirect – there’s lots of legitimate reasons to have them. That said, there’s one really bad reason we come across all the time: “getting SEO benefit from keyword domains”.

We see a lot of clients fall for this; they’ll buy 5-10 different domains with keywords in them, and then have those domains redirect to their main site thinking that they’ll get SEO benefit from having those keyword-filled domains. I’m really sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but it’s not going to work.

When you have a 301 redirect, Google follows that redirect through to the final destination. The source – that domain with the keywords in it – never gets indexed. It never ends up in Google’s results, and – assuming they don’t have any backlinks of their own – won’t pass any benefit through to your main site. 

We own: websavers.ca
We also own: websavershosting.ca 
We also own: websaversradio.com

Those two additional domains? We operated under those for quite a while, and they had their own unique services / portfolios, and they had links to them spread across the internet. Now those domains redirect back to relevant pages on websavers.ca. Why? Because there is that etherial “link juice” flowing through them, which now lands on Websavers.ca – yay! Juice! 

We do not own:
canadasbestwebhostingcompany.com
mostawesomewebhosting.ca
thoseguyswhodogoodwebsites.ca

Why? Because – while those are amazing keywords that I’m sure any reasonable person would be searching for when looking for web hosting or web development services – owning those domains and having them redirect over to our main site won’t actually give us any benefit. 

That’s not to say there’s no point in owning keyword domains, though. If we owned any of those domains, and set up a simple landing page for it, and put quality information in that landing page that would be picked up by Google, then there can be an argument made for the keyword domains. This part of the equation seems to get lost all too often, and people just set up redirects to their main site.

tl;dr – Simply owning a domain doesn’t help your rankings.

If you’re going to buy a domain, you should put it to good use. Don’t have the time to build a bunch of websites? Our SiteMaker website creation plans are a cheap way to get basic websites created for your domains. Utilizing SiteMaker is a great way to make those keyword domains into quick and affordable landing pages which can show off your content, and direct quality traffic back to your main site. 

About Allen Pooley

Allen is a self professed geek and technology lover. He's always playing with one of his various websites, and loves helping customers with theirs. He can often be found with a coffee (light roast, please) in his hand and a smile on his face... or trapped under a pile of yarn.

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