Marketing | 4 min read

Does Using a Keyword As First Word in Domain Affect Your SEO Ranking?

Posted By
Gabriella Fantozzi

Online technology has become tremendously more useful throughout recent years. And that's not just used for research purposes, but as a tool for businesses to communicate and grow. There are many ways that businesses can utilize the Internet and their website to gain more customers, including utilizing a digital marketing strategy and SEO (Search Engine Optimization).

When establishing a new website, the domain name is very important. This is not only because of branding or marketing use, but there is also Search Engine Optimization methodology to keep in mind. It has been proven that domains containing a target keyword phrase can actually help improve click-thru ratios as well as a higher ranking on Google, Yahoo and Bing.

Using a Target Keyword In Your Domain: First, Develop a Plan
One of the first steps in any digital marketing strategy and Search Engine Optimization plan is to determine what message you are trying to relay to your potential website visitors. Typically, its best to start with a plan that will help promote (or optimize) your website for the item or service you would like to sell the most of. For example, if you are a landscaping company in Atlanta, you may want to promote and optimize your landscaping services in that target market. Locating the best keywords to target will help with this strategy.

Why using a keyword in a domain works: If you place your keyword in your domain name, this will help show consistency of keyword relevance throughout the entire domain. (Be wary of using exact match domains for your keywords, as this may appear too over-optimized and can actually work against you. Learn more about why Exact Match Domains (EMD) are on the decline with most recent ranking algorithms by clicking here: For an additional example, a previous report titled “How generic domain names impact SEM campaigns” showcases that ads with the display URL achieved a 298% higher CTR than ads with the display URL

Extra tip: On a psychological level also -- it has been found that searchers can easily find the domain within the search results when it contains the keyword phrase or a related keyword.
Using the Target Keyword First in the Domain
Your domain name is very important for ranking your website and for developing a memorable brand. By inserting the keyword first, you may see some Search Engine Optimization benefits, rather than having the keyword placed between words or the last word in the URL.

The Optimal URL Structure for SEO-Friendliness
With all said and done, we can deter from the clues that Google has given us for ranking factors, that the optimal SEO ranking strategy for your main domain should be as follows:

"KEYWORD+brand" (keyword first in the domain, followed by a shorter phrase for branding purposes.)

Extra tip: Don't forget the main extension - .com
Using .com web extensions continue to rank better and show more authority and trust online than .info or .me and other extensions.

Ready to launch your digital marketing and SEO campaign? Let Manobyte help. We stay up to date on all of the newest Search Engine algorithm changes. We can help you develop the perfect strategy from your new domain name, website design, website launch and monthly management / marketing. Click below to contact us today.