New domains and SEO - What is the connection between the two?

nTLDs offer a great opportunity for businesses and individuals to get a domain name that they desire. However, there’s a lot of doubt over how nTLDs impact SEO of the website. Often, it is assumed that websites on new domains do not rank high on organic search results. However, we have examples that indicate quite the opposite!

What do the users have to say about the impact of new domains on SEO?

We spoke with Aaron Agius, Founder, Louder.Online, a global digital marketing agency. In lat 2015, they moved from LouderOnline.com and LouderOnline.com.au to LouderOnline.com. Being an online SEO company that provides digital marketing solutions to companies, marketing their own brand was definitely an essential step in their business. Aaron says, “We believe that being a global company it definitely made sense to move to a .online especially in terms of branding for an online marketing firm.” Neil Patel, co-founder at Crazy Egg and Hello Bar, endorses Aaron for search, social and content marketing; and together, they offer a course on how to drive more traffic to your blog or website.

What do SEO experts have to say about the impact of new domains on SEO?

Another noteworthy example is that of www.seo-hero.tech, which won the global WIX SEO Hero challenge last year. Walid Gabteni, the SEO expert who created this website explained how his domain name helped him win the challenge, “There are several tactics I used which helped me become the winner, the first one being choosing the right name for my tool as well as the website. Since the contest was called ‘SEO Hero’, I decided to give my SEO tool the same name and chose a keyword-rich domain name, www.seo-hero.tech. Doing so, Google was able to differentiate my website from the other competitors.”

Walid Gabteni further adds, “Many people who talked about my SEO tool started referring to it as ‘SEO Hero Tech’ which proved that the .TECH extension allowed people to differentiate my website from other contesting websites. Before seo-hero.tech got a great ranking on Google for the query ‘SEO Hero’, people were already searching for “SEO Hero Tech”. This eventually led Google to suggest ‘SEO Hero Tech’ even when someone searched for ‘SEO Hero’ and that worked greatly in my favor.”

Is Google using new domains?

Yes! Did you know that Google recently purchased ‘business.site’ for its Google My Business program? Every small business that creates a one-page website through this program will get a BUSINESSNAME.business.site sub-domain name automatically. Alphabet, the parent company of Google, also uses many new domains such as www.abc.xyz, www.chronicle.security and www.x.company. These use cases, among others, are evidence that new domains are as good as any other domains; and are trusted by the likes of Google as well.

What are some known facts about new domains and their impact on SEO?

  • According to Dallas based SEO expert Bill Hartzer, two newly registered domain names are given the same weight by search engines when it comes to organic rankings. So, if no other ranking criteria is considered, both have the same potential to rank high in organic search results.
  • Google, in particular, has clearly specified how they treat domain names and new domain extensions on their Google Webmaster Blog. In this post, Google stated, ‘Overall, our systems treat new domain extensions like other any other exetensions (.com & .org). Keywords in a TLD do not give any advantage or disadvantage in search.’
  • A site that moves to a new domain name that migrates successfully using SEO best practices will not suffer rankings issues, whether or not it’s a keyword rich new domain extension.

What are the best practices for moving from one domain extension to another?

  • Crawl the existing website and make a list of all URLs to redirect to new domain
  • Set up 301 Permanent Redirects from old domain to new domain name
  • Verify both domains in Google Search Console, use Google Change of Address Tool

Does the age of a domain name matter in SEO?

The age in terms of for how long the domain has existed does not matter directly. However, a website that has been around for years, probably has a huge amount of backlinks, content, etc. That influences the search engine ranking. So, it’s the quality of the website and not the age of the domain that matters.

To further help understand how new domains impact a website’s SEO, download the complete report.

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