The Relationship Between Your Domain Name, Social Media & SEO

Choosing a domain name in 2014 can be a real hassle. It feels like all of them are already taken! But yeah, it’s a necessary evil if you want your business to evolve along with the rest of the world. What’s worse than going through the ‘almost-hell’ to register a domain name, is to go through all the trouble to register a domain name that underachieves in the search engines and on the social networks. So to save you from this, we’ve described the general good practices of registering a new domain name.


EMDs & Keyword-rich Domain Names

EMD stands for exact-match domain. So basically, if you are targeting the keyword ‘buy airsoft gun’, the EMD would be

This was a few years ago a heavy ranking factor. After all, if it’s in the domain name, it has to be highly relevant, right? But then people would buy an EMD, set up a 1-page affiliate website, and rank on page 1 (and often #1 position). A lot of low-quality websites (or should I say, web pages) started popping up. It was heaven for spammers. And this is exactly why search engines had to do something about it.

A lot of websites lost their EMD rankings after the SE updates.

If you are planning to create a useful, valuable website, then an EMD might not be such a bad idea. However, it doesn’t really provide any real SEO benefit in 2014.

What it can do, though, is improve your CTR on ads for example. If you are selling airsoft guns, an ad showing the domain “” is likely to perform better than the domain “”. It might also increase your CTR in the SERPs, but again, you have to get there on your own first (the EMD won’t help much with that).

The New Shiny Thing That’s Here to Stay: Brand Domain Names!

Brand names. It’s the new thing. It’s here to stay. Brands are now ranking without having to do any real SEO. Coca-Cola, SONY, Apple, Bellroy, McDonald’s, BBC. They rank high.

Why? Brands are accountable. They are driven to perform, to provide value. They are associated with trust.

People talk about them on their blogs, forums, social networks. It’s really SEO as it’s meant to be.

In our opinion, the way to go is to pick (and stick with) a brandable domain. Build your offline and online presence with it. It has to be a name whereby people can identify you, talk about you, write reviews about you, recommend you, like you (on your FB page), etc.

Basically, make it possible for people to do your SEO and social media marketing for you.

6 Guidelines to Picking Your Brandable Domain

1. .com

Let’s face it, the brands all go after .coms, and with good reasons. And those who didn’t initially, eventually switched to it. switched to switched to

We are all for being unique and stuff, but this is one of those times when you need to go with the norm.

2. Make it Easy is bound to create confusion and misspellings. Choose a domain name that’s easy to remember, write, and pronounced.

3. Don’t Brag or Be Approval-seeking

Don’t self-proclaim things. If big brands did this, then we would have things like instead of

There are plenty of ways and places to demonstrate how good your products and services are, and your domain name is NOT one of them. Try to keep descriptions out of the domain name.

4. Be Original

It can be hard to come up with something unique, especially in 2014, when all the good domains seem to have already been taken.

But whatever you do, please, do NOT try to copy competitors’ domain names. ALL bad ideas, especially if you are selling similar products. Some people will start to immediately flame you for trying to be a copycat, and there is nothing you will be able to do about it.

5. Brainstorm or Hire People

While we don’t doubt your level of creativity and imagination, we have to mention this.

A lot of brand names are the product of someone who was paid to come up with it. Ask your team for their ideas. Ask in forums. Create a contest and reward the one with the best idea. Hire people on freelance sites.

Hopefully by now you have a better image of the direction you need to take before registering your new (and brandable!) domain name.

6. Research a Bit for Your Domain Name

You can either start off with a brand new domain name or you can even purchase an old domain from someone else or from a registrar but how to make sure the domain name that you just bought is in the good/bad books of Google. Matt Cutts answers this query in the following video –

Related Post:

8 Best Practices for Naming Your URLs

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