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Are keyword-rich domains just a waste of time?

I have always advised against going too far down that route, because it smacks of spamming, and Google in particular has a history of acting against such practices. It has already dropped the use of the meta keywords tag because of abuse, and changed its algorithm to block link spam (‘google bombing’) and more recently, article spam.

In March of this year, Google spokesman Matt Cutts slipped into one of his YouTube videos, the news that keyword-enhanced domains could be the next target. You can watch the whole video here.

In the recent past, many businesses and SEO companies have made huge efforts to submit large numbers of articles to article depositories, in the belief that the links back to their site would help their Google rankings. For a short time, they did. But since Google’s latest ‘Panda’ update, those links have been largely ignored, and they find that all their efforts were wasted. The latest news from Google suggests that those who have invested in large numbers of keyword-rich domains may be destined for the same fate.

The moral is, if you want to achieve strong rankings that are sustainable in the long term, you need to provide your site with unique, relevant and high quality content, and the same kind of backlinks. In short, you need to benefit and satisfy your customers and prospective customers, because that’s what Google wants to do, and that’s the behaviour it aims to reward.

By Bruce Townsend, E-Commerce product manager and SEO specialist at Sellerdeck. Originally published on

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