Mateen from Chennai wrote:
1. Isn't it best practice to use the main keywords in the domain?
2. Also how about hpdiabetes.com, short for high-performance-diabetes.com? or HPdiabetic.com?
I will keep thinking but do tell if you or others have any new ideas.
Shorter is better. Why not go as short as you can go with, like:
HPD.com (3 letters) (acronym for high-performance-diabetes)
HPD2.com (4 letters) (acronym for high-performance-diabetes-type2)
HPT2D.com (5 letters) (acronym for high-performance-type2-diabetes)
HPDT2.com (5 letters) (acronym for high-performance-diabetes-type2)
That's what I'd do if it was my site.
Why? And how did I come up with that url? Note from Help Elf: Some of what Wendy has written here has merit, so I did not red-ink all of it. But the parts with no basis in fact I've made red.
It's actually best practice to create a brand name of under 8 letters. When I say brand name, think:
eBay.com (4 letters)
Amazon.com (6 letters)
Tumblr.com (6 letters)
BuzzFeed.com (8 letters)
Reddit.com (6 letters)
ProBlogger.com (10 letters)
FaceBook.com (8 letters)
Twitter.com (7 letters)
Zazzle.com (6 letters)
Yelp.com (4 letters)
Google.com (6 letters)
Bing.com (4 letters)
Yahoo.com (5 letters)
In every case a made up "gibberish-type" (on first appearances) name with no connection to the site topic at all (until you read the About page that tells how they came up with the name and go: "wow, that's actually makes sense!"). But easy to remember, easy for visitors to manually type, and unique enough that it's hard to mimic.
My own SBI site? the niche seed word topic I originally started out with is: "How to be a better a writer", which then evolved to "How to write dark fantasy novels".
So, you'd think my url would be either:
how-to-write-dark-fantasy-novels.com (31 letters)
(Both were available in 2013, don't know if they still are)
So what is my url?
[Domain Private] (6 letters)
Because 6 letters is easy to remember and promote.
For the first 3 years of my site I had bot-blockers in place and refused to all Google, Bing, etc to index my pages. Instead relying 100% on organic traffic instead of search traffic. (organic traffic means, the visitor typed the url directly, as opposed to typed a search term and found the url). How did I get traffc those first 3 years?
My website is painted on my car as can clearly be seen in these pictures of my car: (don't know how to get photos to show up on the post)
and as you can see I repaint it every year so you never know what it'll look like from one picture to the next.
It's also painted on my motorhome, as seen here:
As you can see the letters on the side of the motorhome are over a foot tall and can be seen from quite some distance away.
Now, think of how hard it would be for to paint how-to-write-dark-fantasy-novels.com in foot tall letters across my mototorhome, verses [Domain Private] instead?
We being carnival Gypsies, the RV gets parked at festivals, carnivals, fairs, side shows, etc all over New England, and why have a plan white RV when you can have a 22 foot long neon pink billboard that screams [Domain Private] across the side?
Bigger then on the side of my motorhome is the "billboards" in my yard. (currently 3, they change constantly) and are made out of queen sized bed sheets:
Because I live on a beach ([Domain Private]) in a town that gets 2 million tourists every June/July/Agust, and as many as 10,000 people walk by my driveway/car/motorhome on their way to reach the beach, that means, a lot of people see the url eeklat.com and wonder "what the heck is that?" and search it on their phones while sitting on the beach.
Now, think of how hard it would be for people to remember how-to-write-dark-fantasy-novels.com versus [Domain Private] instead when it comes to typing it in on their phone once they get set up on the beach?
Because I am a retail merchandiser and travel 100+ miles a day to multiple WalMarts, walGreens, & CVSs all over the state, my car is seen by a lot of shoppers as well.
Because I'm an author who CosPlays my novels' characters at gaming/comic book conventions
and, just around town when going shopping at walMart, eating at McDonalds, etc and stuff because I'm OtherKin
(Yes, that is how I dress every day, 24/7 - since 1987)
this results in me handing out 100+ business cards a day, as people are constantly running up to me asking to get a picture with me and my car, and wanting to know where they can find out more about me, my car, and my over the top outlandish costume, and I just hand them a business card.
Now, try to imagine what how-to-write-dark-fantasy-novels.com looks like printed on a business card - long and clunky, vs [Domain Private] instead, short and sweet. I mean think about it... on a business card, you ain't got much room to work with... most companies have a limit to how many characters per line and the limit is usually 18 characters or less.
That means if I had gone with how-to-write-dark-fantasy-novels.com (31 letters) instead of [Domain Private] (6 letters) I wouldn't be able to print up business cards, due to the fact that a 31 letter url is longer then the 18 character maximum space limit per line.
To get business cards with a long url, I would have had to break it up putting half the url on each line!
^THAT^ it was that looks like! To fit that url on a business card, it would need to be broken up into 3 lines! Look at that poor lonely "m" all by itself.
So, when choosing a url you need to consider too, any promotional issues that may come up, like is your url too long to print on a business card?
What about buttons, pens, mugs, postcards, t-shirts, etc? (Yes I use those as well. When I said I do heavy duty offline promoting, because offline promotion brings in way more traffic then is possible with online promotion... I mean I REALLY do a LOT of super heavy duty offline promoting... my url is printed on more than 200 different types of products, thanks to Zazzle.com's ability to make your own promo materials on everything from sneakers to yoga pants to dogfood bowls to shower curtains... yes, my url is on shower curtains and yoga pants! I think most people don't realize the level of offline marketing I do, and think it's just limited to handing out business cards.)
Then there are design features. Yep. That's a thing.
Have someone write out your url in fancy hand painted calligraphy. What does it look like?
I know, it's not a thing the average site owner thinks about, but it's a thing I thought about, because I'm the type of person who likes to think of every possible angle.
Well, it turns out, in calligraphy, my url looks like a dragonfly, so, I went and had a calligraphic dragonfly shaped logo made up and started using it on t-shirts and yoga pants as an all over print. You know, the way Coco Chanel made the double "c" logo everyone knows as soon as they see it?
Short urls can easily be made into logos. The longer the url, the more difficult it becomes to turn the url itself into a logo.
This offline promotion resulted in my site consistently have around 14,000 page views a month, right out the starting gate, all of them 100% organic, manually direct typed url, without any traffic coming from search engines at all.
Then there is online promotion. I have 300+ social network and forum accounts. I'm member of tons of online writer groups and chats and message boards. When ever I add a new page on my site, it gets promoted to various ones of them, depending on the topic of the page and the rules of the group in question. My site adds 1 to 3 new pages every day.
Now, just think of how tedious it would get to type how-to-write-dark-fantasy-novels.com/long-tail-keyword-page-topic 30 or 40 or 50 times a day vs [Domain Private]/long-tail-keyword-topic-of-page?
Keeping in mind that I'm not just randomly spam posting links to my site on these paces either, but rather I'm writing long posts (like the one you are reading right now) answering someone's question. I write at minimum 10 of these long forum posts a day, and only 1, maybe 2 of them will contain a link back to my site.
I have never bought ads or traffic for my site, and have always done my own offline and online promotions (mostly offline). And having a short 6 letter url has made it a lot easier for me to get my marketing done, because I'm not having to constantly try to remember "Now did I put a hyphen there are an underscore; did I use a or the between them?" etc. With a simple, easy to remember, 6 letter word for my domain name, I'm able to get my marketing and promoting done easy.
I ending up gaining 16,000 backlinks (mostly from page viewers sharing pages on Twitter, FaceBook, Tumblr, and Reddit) from casual viewers linking back to me. The power of organic link building can be seen in search engines later. By keeping the site blocked from bots and search indexes for the first 3 years, and by having nothing but manually typed traffic and social network backlinks, when I removed the bot blockers, Bing indexed 500+ pages of my site in less ten 48 hours of it having access to do so, and Google had 700+ pages indexed in under a week.
Neither Bing nor Google will index a site under 6 months old, so your first 6 months you aren't being indexed anyways, and Google actually puts meta data around new urls (under 3 years old) to force them very low in search results (because 90% of all websites get shut down within 3 years by a webmaster who looked for instant online income and gave up; and thus Google classifies every site under 3 years old as not worth indexing because it has not yet proved it'll stick around). Which is the reason for blocking bots the first 3 years, because once the site is 3 years old, it no longer is at risk of being forced down in search results just for being too young any more, and it's easier to NOT get dinged by Google in the first place, then it is to convince Google to unding (I've been building websites since 1997 btw, so that's why I knew to block bots right out the gate when starting my SBI site in 2013.) But that's me going off topic again...
Back on topic...
The point is, people don't like to be made to think, when it comes to finding info. If they wanted to think, they'd do research, and would not be on the internet to begin with. If a person is searching the internet for answers instead of heading to the library to do real research in books, then that person is only looking to be told something, they want a canned food answer, not a home cooked meal, they want Ramen noodles in a cup not a thanksgiving dinner. They want the internet to spoon feed them answers so they don't have to do the work and find out for themselves.
People looking for hard core research are NOT on the internet looking for fast answers.
That brings us to the reason behind short urls.
The type of person who heads to the internet searching for help writing a novel, is also the type of person who'll never write a novel, because they can't even be bothered to type a long url. So we as webmasters give them the processed baby mush they ask for: urls of 8 letters of less.
Let's go back to amazon for example.
What is their site topic?
international online book seller
so, had they named their url after their topic, their would be have had
international-online-book-seller.com (38 letters) instead of amazon.com, right?
Well, those people who make up the bulk of internet browsers... you know, the ones who want instant noodles instead of a 5 course meal? How many of them do you think would take the time to manually type out "international-online-book-seller.com" (38 letters) every time they wanted to buy a book?
The answer? None of them.
Do a search on Google and Bing for that search term. (international oonline book seller) and you will find that there are millions of booksellers online who ship internationally. MILLIONS. And yet, most of them are unheard of and rank low in search results.
Because most of them are using long tail urls as their primary domain name.
Because most of them have 4 or 5 words domain name urls of 20 to 50 letters and nobody is going to type that out. It takes less time to cook Ramen cup o soup noodles then it does takes to type out the domain names of some of those sites.
[b]Think of it this way" if you can pour water over instant noodles faster then you can type your domain name, then your domain name is too long, no matter what your topic is.And THAT is why sites like Amazon reign king, because it's easier for lazy browsers (who make up the majority of internet browsers) to type "Amazon.com" then it is for them to type "international-online-book-seller.com". Amazon's domain name is the instant noodles url of booksellers.
Think too, of how hard it is to type long url on a mobile phone!
Two or three times of a large finger, clicking the wrong letter and they still have 30 letters left to type of your url, they are gonna give up and just head for a site with a shorter url.
In the 1990s and early 200s, long tail urls were the thing to do, because back then the internet was dominated by "brainy nerds" who didn't mind typing a novel to type your url. No one was using the internet back then unless they were a college student or a super geek. The normal average Joe laughed and bullied and teased a person who even owned a computer let alone the major nerd who had actual dial up internet.
Heck, in 2007, just 10 years ago, cable high speed was a rare thing that could only be found in the biggest metropolis cities, and not all 50 states of America even had access to high speed internet yet. Ten years ago, long tail domain names worked, because typing the long tail domain name was a way to pass the time while you waited for your dial up connection to find an internet line that wasn't busy. It could take up to 20 minutes to get an internet connection, and pages took 5 minutes or more to load.
Those days are gone. Now you have internet access in seconds and pages that load in fractions of a second, and with the ease of access, came too, the ability for the non-geeks, the non-nerds, and the every day Joe to use the internet.
Now in 2017, computer geeks are no longer being beating up by classroom bullies for the sin of having home internet access, because EVERYBODY has internet access.
That means the internet is no longer dominated by college students, Dungeon Masters, geeks, and nerds. That means, long tail urls are no longer a good thing, because the average Joe isn't the same as the computer geeks. He isn't going to take the time to type a long url.
Nerdy geeks, still prefer the long tail urls, and they will still look for them (I know I do!), but for a site that is looking to get a lot of traffic, you need to be attracting the bulk majority of internet browsers, and they are the ones who can't even take the time to type "I love you" (11) in a text and instead type "I<3U" (4)
Text talk or text type is how the average browser searches for things these days.You are looking to attract the people who type:
laugh out loud
oh my god
by the way
in my honest opinion
my two cents
and they also skip forum posts like mine (and Ken's) browsing only for the phrase TL;DR
These are the people who make up most of Google search traffic, and these are therefore the people you are trying to attract to your site, so long tail domain names are out and acronym domain names are in.And that's what you need to do with your own url.
Your site needs to become the instant noodles of high performance type 2 diabetes. People need to be able to type your catchy, easy to remember, 8 letter or less url in under 2 seconds.
And so that's why, when I saw your site topic, I thought: HPD2.com (4 letters) for tour domain name.
Now, when it comes to tier 3 (T3) pages, long tail keyword urls are great. It's on your T3 pages is where you want to use them, because those will rank high in Google for their topic.
So for example, your T3 content pages would look like this:
Can you see how I took phrases from your post and turned them into long tail T3 page topic urls?
At first a person will see hpd2 and be "what's that?" but then once they realize it's an acronym for high performance type 2 diabetes, they'll be "oh, I get it! Hey that's easy to remember!"
In other words, it'll help them to keep coming back day after day, once they realize how much easier it is to type your url into the search box, rather then typing even the longer word "diabetes" into the search box.
I know, I probably over think these things. I spend weeks or even months analyzing every angle and aspect of a thing before I go about actually doing it.
I ran my poor brain on hyper overload for months while I was trying to figure out what domain name to pick for my website. I researched all the various online "seo gurus" to see what each one had to say for and against long tail keywords being used as a domain name. I drove my boyfriend batty, with every day telling him: "so the pros of long url is this and the pros of short url are these, what do you think I should go with?"
In the end I went with a short 6 letter url for the reasons stated above, as it just made sense to me and how I do my methods of offline promotion. In the end, for me, it came down to answering the question: "how easy will it be for me to promote a 31 letter url vs a 6 letter url?"
So for me, because I focus so heavily on offline promotions, I went with the 6 letter url over the 31 letter url.
And I started researching what to name my site in 2010, and had hung on to that 31 letter url for almost 3 years before I finally went ahead and bought the 6 letter url instead. It was not an easy choice, because I REALLY wanted to have "how-to-write-a-fantasy-novel.com" even though it was a 31 letter url and it took me 3 years of debating and researching to finally talk myself out of the url I had my heart set on and go with the 6 letter one instead, because I knew in the long run the 6 letter url would just be a better option even though I liked the 31 url better.
Now, that's not to say the long tail url is not a good thing, either. There are many cases of it being better than a short url. But it's going to be different for each site. A lot will depend on you personally and what your personal goals are for your site.
Depending on your goals and methods, etc, a long tail url may actually be better for you then a short url.
One option might be to have both. And have one redirect to the other.
I think in the end, all you can really do is weigh all your options and decide which option will work best with your personal goals, because each has its pros and cons, and each works in their own unique ways.
So, say, if you were going with a lot more online promotion, it's easy to copy and paste your url everywhere, and Google will find the keywords in the url, so maybe, for someone doing online online promos, the long tail url would be better?
For me, my focus being mostly on offline promos, the ability to copy and paste the url is not there, and Google isn't out in the world reading flyers or business cards (yet --- who knows what they'll be doing in the future! LOL! Google does make those Ai reading glasses and driverless cars now. Who knows how long it'll be before Google search engine starts searching street flyers via car headlights! )
So in my case, the shorter url made more sense because it worked better with my personal goals and methods.
Well, there you have it. My thoughts, rambling all over the place.----- The TL;DR:-----
In my personal experience, while long tail domain name urls are good and certainly have their place, and have been proven to work wonders for SOME content sites, they may not work out for everyone, and short urls seem to be better for websites in the long term scheme of things. So it is best to weigh out all your options and make a list of all the pros and cons of each, then figure out which pros are pro to you and which cons are cons to you, then go with the one that is best for you and your long term goals for your site.