I have asked a question along these same lines before, but now I have a more specific purpose in this question. I am preparing to start a website on a new topic (for me) on which I will have approximately 40-60 articles I can write. It is a very narrow, well-saturated niche. Still I think I can be successful at it as I have 20+ years experience in the field from several different perspectives.
If one has so few articles to contribute, would you just stay with one extension. Is there value in spreading it over 3 extensions and interlinking them? Specifically, .guru is the one I want; dot com is taken already. However .org .net and .info are also available. .org and .info would also be very good for my information/education based website.
Your input is appreciated!
the main reason why people buy the .net, .org, .info versions of a domain name is simply to prevent someone else from taking them. you don't have to put any content on the domains, you can just "park" them. or you can configure a redirect. for instance, hubpages.net and hubpages.org both redirect to this site. hubpages.info is a parked domain, not sure who owns it.
people also buy spelling variations and hyphenated/unhyphenated versions of their domain names for the same reason.
Here's my input which will be shouted down.
I don't think the domain name has any value - apart from perhaps branding and linking. If your content is OK and your site has some value - and you believe in what you are doing - then you don't need any fancy stuff.
Edit. Oh and duh - the very best of luck with it!
Thanks for the well wishes Mark - I may be linking to one of your articles in the near future. lol
I agree that for many topics a good name does not require good SEO - some of the pet site domains, like Chewy, are cute, get the concept across and are easily remembered without any SEO value.
On certain serious subjects though, I look at the domain name for credibility. If it regards information on a career change or choice, I don't want musings from some dude's blog. Typically, newspaper articles won't be in depth enough. So a name that is professional and related to the topic I am researching will get a click from me, before a domain name with a tangential association with the subject I am researching.
Domain name suffixes are VERY IMPORTANT.
for a kick off each means something different
I'll give you another clue - they're priced differently and some go faster than others. There's a reason for that.
There are three which are really worth having.
If you do the research you'll find out why.
did the research. Quick Google. Domain names don't matter any more. Unless you are selling them. Then they matter a lot - all that Godaddy rip-off, etc.
But seriously - is there any valid evidence that a domain name makes a shred of difference to the small players?
Need to re-do your research.
I'm sorry, but you are wrong. The suffix matters in many ways - not the least of which being the perception of your potential visitors.
Research all you want, confirmation bias is a funny thing.
If you aren't into black hat or adult content, the likelihood of you pulling off a successful website that doesn't use the big three is incredibly small.
No I don't need to do anything. Merely added my thoughts and observations for what they were worth.
I'll let you know if my website gets successful.
It already is. I love it.
I note the site that comes up for you when I google Mark Ewbie has the suffix "weebly.com"
That's the suffix for the free version of the weebly site - which is no longer indexed by Google.
Just wondered whether you knew that Weebly had made that change.....
You found me!
That probably means my site is indexed.
As I am paying them a few pounds each month it should be. It was too much extra money to buy the domain "DirtyPics.com"
Did you pay for a domain name as well eg markewbie.com? If you're paying them a few pounds each month you can point the free domain name - which is what you're using - to your own domain name
My understanding is that they made the change quite recently re dropping the indexing of the free domain names - towards the end of last year. (There was a blog post about it which I read - although I can't find it).
I don't know if it's the free sites or the free domain names which are now marked "no follow".
I think it is the free sites which tend to use the default domain names. Most people who pay also buy a domain name. I didn't.
I am paying the minimum charge to remove their Weebly ad from the footer.
My traffic is about 98% search traffic.
Edit: I figured I might get shot down so here are the exact figures for a year.
10.1% direct - search by a different angle as far as I can see.
It might be that branding would be a good idea but I have been busy on other fronts for the last year. The site is not my highest priority. And to be honest - I don't know what I would call it that would add value.
Being indexed creates traffic for quite a long time (up to 6 months?)
Staying indexed means that the Google bot continues to crawl and recognise your site. I'd keep an eye on your traffic in case it starts to change and drop off.
I watch my traffic constantly as I experiment with layout, content, etc. It's called micro-changing or something. Make small change - check results.
Recently added pages are being indexed and receiving a little search traffic. Older pages get some search traffic. And it is growing not shrinking.
If it did drop off and there was no other reason maybe I would splash out on a shiny domain name. But I did check the Weebly announcement closely when they made it and it was to remove or lessen the impact of large numbers of low-quality spam sites being created.
The 'sharing' of Weebly.com is rather different to the Hubpages model. There is NO interlinking between 'sites'. So I am totally separated (I think, hope and pray) from other unconnected sites on the weebly.com domain. It feels like that is a correct understanding.
Thanks for the comments though. The HubPages forum can be great for learning from what others are saying and doing.
Oh - I'm glad it's not just my imagination that I read that announcement! It's certainly my understanding that they did it to get rid of all the free sites occupied by spammers. I guess they swarmed off the content farms that have been closed and on to places like HubPages and Weebly.
I think it must be that it's the free sites by the change that are affected and you're safe because you pay for the starter pack to get the weebly adverts removed.
I'd still think very seriously about getting your own domain name.
You are right. I should 'brand' myself / content / whatever. But I am not quite there yet. This is (yet another) year of experimentation.
Will people buy my product? Yes.
Will they buy enough of it? Don't know.
Those are my key drivers at the moment in what is still a part-time hobby for me.
Couldn't resist a look.
jamhat.com is not available.
If you searched for him, and found him on Google...then it must be indexed by Google...
So you're telling me that because you have a .com website that is successful, this is evidence to you that domain extensions don't matter?
Your logic defies me.
And...if you're going to spew misinformation to people who are looking to make a monetary decision, you don't need to do anything (That being redoing your research) is false. If you don't understand something, you shouldn't provide authoritative advice. That is irresponsible and there is no valid argument to the contrary.
Hi Matt. It gets worse.
"It makes me happy" is my definition of success whereas I suspect yours has more to do with visits and money.
I still think it is not essential to buy a fancy domain name in order to get search visits. I personally believe MOST search visitors don't care what the site name is. I don't think Google cares otherwise everyone who isn't Amazon.com may as well give up.
But those are just opinions on a forum of course. I think that's how they work.
Yes, that is worse.
Because you are basing "successful" off of a completely subjective concept, when the person is asking for advice on whether or not the domain extension matters. So you're "happy" with your .com address (And other Mark, you are wrong - just because he is a subdomain of weebly.com does not make him NOT have a .com address...he STILL has a .com address as opposed to being the subdomain of a .guru address). Good for you. You being 'happy' has no bearing on whether or not your domain extension makes a difference. And STILL you aren't even speaking from any real experience.
You being 'successful' by your own definition of success based on your website which bears a .com in no way, shape, or form can be used as evidence that using a .info address is going to be better off.
As a matter of fact, it's even worse...because you are now saying that your non-monetary experience that doesn't even relate to the question is useful evidence to dish out advice to somebody about to make a monetary decision.
.....but Mark doesn't have a dot com website.
He has a free subdomain of the weebly.com website - which he could change if he wants to.
Except - somebody else has already bought his namedomain.com....
#1 recommendation to EVERYBODY is go and buy your veryownname.com BEFORE you become a success. It's a small price to pay for having it available when you want it.
And that is why I am a little anti domains. I used to have my own - for ego purposes - and I let it lapse. Within a few days it had been grabbed by some spam outfit and plastered with adverts. They offered to sell it back to me for several thousand dollars!
It is clearly a blackmail style trick pulled off by GoDaddy or whoever. Fine if they are happy with that kind of grubby low-rent business.
So I figured I didn't need one anyway. It hurt a lot at the time and not at all now. I will hopefully never buy a domain name again.
Do NOT use the .info suffix.
It's heavily associated with spam sites because it's often sold more cheaply. Just having a .info suffix can result in a Google penalty.
The best suffix is always .com, followed by .net or .org. In general, you are far better compromising on your domain name than compromising on the suffix, e.g. if your keywords are "blue widgets", and someone already has "bluewidgets.com", don't bother getting "bluewidgets.guru". Instead, think of a word you can add to the END of the keyword phrase so you can get the .com, e.g. bluewidgetsonline.com or bluewidgetstoday.com
There is still a lot of debate as to whether any of the more recent suffixes are worth using.
Well the .com is parked, but for a mere $7999.00 I can drive away with my new shiny new domain. ..org is available and an org would suit my needs well. I did want to be a guru too. For some reason, someone has bought up all the .gurus for my subject matter, leaving behind the orgs, nets etc...
FYI - my topic has to do with a specific business certification training.
Are you based in the UK? What about the .co.uk version?
No, no kippers and tea for me; I am based in the USA.
Is there any benefit to redirecting other domains to the main one, or is that just something you can do, but it matters not one bit.
Maybe one of the HP owners can chime in on more of the advantages of owning the .net/org versions and redirecting. When the domain name is your brand or trademark, it's really just about preventing squatters from benefitting from your name.
If you came up with a really clever name, then bought the .com, you'd probably feel really crummy if someone snapped up the .net and .org and then parked them with ads. You'd probably feel worse if they then contacted you and offered to sell them to you!
Kippers and tea!
How I miss dunking my kippers in lukewarm tea and having a good old chin wag with the missus.
Misplaced the time machine, unfortunately.
The fact that the .com domain is so expensive is a sign that it's a good domain name, so buying the .org would be a good choice. Frankly - since "exact match" domain names aren't critically important any more - the chances of anyone ever paying that money for the .com is very remote so you don't have to worry about the .com coming online and competing with you.
.guru is worthless. If you want "guru" in the name, add it to the end of the name, don't use it as a suffix.
The trick I find is to just keep on thinking until you come up with one that .com can be attached to!
It takes a while but eventually you get there
I use .com, .org, .net only... I think I have one .info but that does next to no traffic and have not touched it for a while and it was only an experiment.
I also have some of my sites on .org/.net where the .com was already snapped up but parked. One .com recently (just over a year ago now) became live and they have tried to replicate my site with similar structure but supposedly "original" content (similar titles and content to everything on my site!! Obviously rewritten). My .org which has been live for about 3 years still ranks way ahead for keywords and has not suffered any traffic reduction due to the .com now being a live site.
As to buying all of the .suffix domains around your domain name I don't see the value in that unless the person is likely to actually type your domain name directly into the address box on the search engine. Otherwise the search engines are going to be directing traffic to you via your content....
I know that Google says that the domain name does not matter and that matching the keywords in your domain name has no advantage (EMD) - but my experience says otherwise as most of my sites get traffic based on the domain name match, as long as the content is attracting plenty of visits for other keywords.
An exception to the general rule of only using com/net/org is when you can incorporate the suffix to make a word or phrase (especially in a cutesy way.) You might look askance at an arbitrary site using ".co" or ".vu" but it works well for www.ta.co and www.deja.vu (the first redirects to tacobell.com and the second is a travel site.)
A lot of the two-letter suffixes are country abbreviations with residency restrictions, but many allow anyone living anywhere to register them, like .co. You might be able to come up with something clever with these. Here is a list of them if you want inspiration https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_I … el_domains
Hey Mark! Yes, you are correct re being "unconnected" from other weebly pages. The only issue with weebly I discovered, is that unless you upgrade to a paid package, you do NOT get on google search.
Domain extensions do not have inherit value, be it monetary, indexing power, etc. Notably, various extensions are designed more for recognition, user-friendliness than anything else. For example, T.CO is globally recognized as Twitter's official short url, which is used to shorten long links and identify the host/parent domain. Same as FB.ME for Facebook. CO stands for company, NET for network, COM for community and ORG for organization. Recently a plethora of new extensions were added enabling user-targeted registry, like GURU, MUSIC, STORE, NAME, even to the likes of EXCHANGE, XXX, etc., allowing for more categorical indexing. More than anything, extensions are used for aesthetic purposes. Previously, extensions denoted ones geo-location or country, like IN, ME, US, RU, UK, NZ. Again, this is for branding and recognition, as one can be very clever in creating a user-friendly domain. Few care little about the registry itself.
Purchasing various extensions truly depends on the purpose for said purchase. If only to expand the bubble around a focused extension, then it is best to choose a parent extension with domain name and then build the bubble-wrap around it. Will the child extensions help users recognize the parent better, or drive more traffic, reduce spam, increase indexing power?
As for valuation, domains DO have value. That value is based on the collective variable names within the extension category, as well as demand for that sector -and whether or not the domain is seasoned. Active domains build value over time and can become very valuable. Likewise newer extensions can incur a hefty price if the registrant is limiting the number of available slots or if the space is in hot demand. As example the CO and IO extensions became increasingly popular with the mobile application boom, making them soar in price. If I remember correctly, one such extension I sought to purchase was going for $12,000 USD.
Can you expand on the Bubble concept. I am not sure exactly what you mean by that. Thanks!
The bubble-wrap concept is twofold. The first is to swell the core human-readable domain and extension ( example.com ) with as many extensions as possible using the same or closely similar domain (example.net, example.org, example.name). Oft times, these children are used as redirects to the parent. They can also be used to offset the load on the parent. The logic is not all that different from buying real estate parcels. The more you have, the more they're worth, and the more you can build on them. The bubble is formed and expands by the additional domain.extension(s). The deflating part is too many similar domains pointing to one domain begins to look very "spammy" which is why many Grey and White Hat hacks recommend not over using this technique, unless you plan on opening a registry to resell or host them.
The second approach is more internal, although can be achieved external of the parent, depending on the server and how they handle extensions. The suffix, or extension to the domain is just like .exe on a Windows OS that relates to an executable file or .jpg for a Joint Photographic Experts Group that relates to a picture file, so also are domain suffix handled and categorized. Likewise, domain prefix, commonly called sub-domains can be applied. To add lots of robustness to the parent -and to flow traffic to specific elements- folks add sub-domains ( api.example.com). This adds an additional layer of bubble-wrap and, believe it or not, valuation potency. And unlike the previous approach is highly liked by users and engines.
"What are you a wizard? A genius? Why didn't you tell me that before?"
Which would be better then for the main website - a group of sub-domain blogs linking to the main domain or independent blogs with their own domain linking back to the main domain?
The example would be petgiftsonline - with a dog blog, cat blog, etc... what brings better SEO value subdomains or indpendent blogs linking back to products on the petgiftsonline domain?
Ha! Borderline genius, maybe.
Right. From a technical perspective, prefixes -subdomains- are treated exactly like a normal domain. A search engine reads sub.domain.extension as it would read domain.extension. For example:
http://example.com/dogs/ is seen by the engine as a directory or folder within the root domain, therefore it is categorized as an internal folder, which is crawled, as well as the items within. However, http://dogs.example.com/ is seen as a root domain and not a folder -even though it actually is. That child or symbolic link is treated as top level and the engine crawls it as it would any other top level domain.
Now, going even further, consider this: For each independent domain, the spider must crawl and determine if it is a real link, a redirect, etc. Once it knows what kind, then determines how to read and grab the data within. Redirect domains -bubbled- are really an old-school back-linking trick. If not redirecting, meaning the content is actually on this additional domain.extension site, then the spider is going to have to crawl and index every item separately, like it does every other website. So, all those example.whatever sites need to be indexed. That drops the level of optimization considerably. But, as a symbolic link or prefix, the spider associates it as part of, yet independent of, the parent domain. This speeds crawl time and indexing ratios by a very nice percentage, reducing the RPMs so to speak, making things much more fuel efficient -not to mention quieter, allowing the engine to run smooth. The more torque and forced RPMs on the engine, the greater the risk it will stall or blow up. Optimization means reducing RPMs by keeping the engine steady not chug-chugging each domain, if that made any sense.
The bonuses: site is more organized, easier to read by both machines and humans, and under one roof thus increasing the overall strength of the domain and its valuation.
I think you're misunderstanding jacharless. He is not suggesting making separate blogs with the .org, .net suffixes - they would not exist as real sites, the domain names would just be permanently forwarded to the main domain.
At one time that theory was well regarded but it is debated today. It's such a blatantly obvious tactic to make your site APPEAR better without adding any value, many people believe Google got wise to it ages ago, and regards it as a spam tactic. Even Jacharless admits this with his comment, "The deflating part is too many similar domains pointing to one domain begins to look very "spammy"". You'll notice he also says that, "Redirect domains -bubbled- are really an old-school back-linking trick.
He also says "many Grey and White Hat hacks recommend not over using this technique" - I don't know if you're familiar with the White, Grey and Black Hat hackers - they are levels of SEO practices. "White Hatters" play it safe. "Grey Hatters" are willing to try a few things that Google might not like, but don't believe in taking too many risks. "Black Hatters" go all out to game the system. Personally I think it's dangerous to adopt any but White Hat techniques unless you're very knowledgeable.
The issue of whether to use sub-domains is also debated. In general, it seems best nowadays to have all your content on your main domain rather than split into sub-domains: but the most important thing is that your navigation is easy to use. If it will be easier for the reader to navigate with separate sub-domains rather than all on the main site, then go for it.
How much does HTTPS matter for new websites when it comes to ranking, user experience, etc?
I have a .com domain name and I have built a little Blogger site. Blogger now enables HTTPS for their subdomains, but not for owned domain names. This is making me second-guess using my domain name. Google appears to have some "HTTPS everywhere" initiative, which makes me think sites without it will be left behind in the SERPs eventually.
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