Get The Long Tail Names for Your Website | DomainInvesting.com
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Get The Long Tail Names for Your Website

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I know there are a lot of domain investors who have developed one or more websites, and many have seen success in terms of traffic and advertisers for one or more website. I want to make a suggestion to those of you who may have local directory sites for national services or products, and I will use DogWalker.com as my example.

If possible, you should consider hand registering long tail domain names to help drive traffic to your site. You can either build mini sites (which I do not do) to drive traffic to the main site, or you can do a 301 redirect, which won’t give you much SEO value, but they could drive traffic to your site.

I own domain names like PhiladelphiaDogWalking.com, LasVegasDogWalker.com, CharlotteDogWalkers.com, and many other large city names that are related (all hand registered). These names are all forwarded to the main page on DogWalker.com for each city, allowing type in traffic to find the page they want.

Here’s my rationale. I pay under $10 for a hand registered domain name. I also pay Adwords somewhere between $.75 and $1.75 or so per click, depending on the keyword. Assuming I get 8-12 visits a year, the names pay for themselves. It’s great because when someone types in LasVegasDogWalker.com, it’s very targeted traffic.

In addition, these names also have intrinsic value to others as well, since they’re descriptive domain names. In other words, I could sell any of these names if that will be beneficial to my business. Perhaps I could sell a name like BrooklynDogWalking.com to a company in Brooklyn for $1,500 and an annual listing on DogWalker.com + a link back. I haven’t done this yet, but it’s a possibility.

To be totally truthful, I don’t have a way to track the traffic from these domain names since they are 301 redirects. However, when I had them on WhyPark, most did receive a few visits a month, so I can assume that traffic has continued.

I recommend you look into doing this. I know some of my competitors are doing the exact same thing, and I am sure yours are as well.


About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of DomainInvesting.com. Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has sold seven figures worth of domain names in the last five years. Please read the DomainInvesting.com Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest.


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Comments (24)

    BullS

    Yo, I have done that already on my home care domains-http://homecaredomains.com/

    All the CITYhomecare.com goes to the main site of homecaredomains.com and getting lots of sales.

    IT WORKS!!!

    March 28th, 2011 at 2:06 pm

    Nameclerk

    Time is always scarce but it seems you’d be well served to put up a minimum amount of keyword targeted content on each of these domains and then place a predominant link to the appropriate category on DogWalker.com.

    The search traffic for these long tail keywords is probably much higher than the type-in traffic the domains are currently receiving. With minimal development you could receive all that traffic, be able to track it, and also boost your regional keyword rankings on dogwalker.com as well.

    I’m sure you could outsource if for cheap. Just my 2 cents.

    -Bill

    March 28th, 2011 at 2:12 pm

    Elliot Silver

    @ Bill

    I’ve thought about that, but I don’t want Google to think this is spammy, and to me, it seems like it would be spammy. I also wouldn’t want those mini landers to outrank the main site and/or push it down in the rankings.

    Additionally, hosting all of those sites would get expensive, and they’d need to be on different servers to really try and get maximum search engine value. Not really something I want to do.

    March 28th, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    Nameclerk

    Receiving a penalty on the main site is a reasonable cause for concern. If the main site already ranks for many of those city/regional terms than the case isn’t nearly as strong for doing it. That is, if you’re already getting the traffic now.

    March 28th, 2011 at 2:20 pm

    Adi

    Maybe your hosting company provides some traffic analysis tools where you might be able to see how many visits each domain is getting.

    March 28th, 2011 at 3:16 pm

    Keith Carasco

    I’m in total agreement with Bill. I’m currently developing DustyPig.Com as a household cleaning product online store. I have five or six domains within the niche such as handwipes.net handsanitiser.net screen-wipes.org and a few others. I’m intending on placing links onto the domains, logo content etc driving type in traffic the the main site DustyPig.Com which I will also place a campaign onto. I’ve picked up some really useful pointers from all discussions above, for going forward.

    March 28th, 2011 at 3:22 pm

    Rob Sequin

    Not sure if you would get any penalty for a 301 redirect. If you do a 302 which I think is a frame forward, google won’t see anything so nothing to penalize and domain should show as a referral in your logs. Talk with an experienced webmaster or host.

    I’d be curious to see more posted about this topic since I have LOTS of ancillary domains pointing to a variety of developed sites.

    March 28th, 2011 at 4:12 pm

    Secure Hosting

    @NameClerk,

    Great suggestions. I’ve seen people employ this technique by *creating unique, relevant content* on the long tail domains and then linking to the main domain.

    @Elliot,

    You could host it all on one server, your costs would be the same & no need to play sneaky games like different servers/IP’s, different WHOIS etc. People get away with that only in the short term. :)

    – Richard

    March 28th, 2011 at 4:14 pm

    AB

    Speaking of NYC dogwalkers, you should hire this one to promote your site!

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/03/28/craigslist-dog-walker_n_841325.html

    March 28th, 2011 at 4:18 pm

    Dave

    How about CustomDogWalker (dot) com, USADogWalker (dot) com, EtcDogWalker (dot) com. Would you still use a 301 or build mini sites?

    I find that I still have a page one ranking with several category type websites linked together using the same terms.

    I would like to the main website at the top, but it all takes time, content and work.

    March 28th, 2011 at 4:24 pm

    Elliot Silver

    @ Dave

    Only interested in search terms for these long tail names, and I don’t see any/many searches for those terms..

    March 28th, 2011 at 4:25 pm

    Brad Mugford

    I agree with your thoughts about long tail domains. It doesn’t take many hits over the course of a year to break even on targeted keywords.

    Brad

    March 28th, 2011 at 4:29 pm

    morgan

    301 redirects are pretty easy to track in google analytics .. i just append a referral string to the URL and then look for it in “Top Content” in google analytics

    so for example have:
    LasVegasDogWalker.com

    redirect to
    http://www.dogwalker.com/?ref=LasVegasDogWalker.com

    or better:
    http://www.dogwalker.com/nevada/las-vegas-dog-walkers/?ref=LasVegasDogWalker.com

    March 28th, 2011 at 4:41 pm

    Dave

    I agree with buying the long tail names, but I still like mini sites vs 301’s because some people do not understand what happened when they type one name and another site shows up. Or search for a term and another website term is at the top.

    I use both and I wonder which way is best …. it would be an interesting test.

    March 28th, 2011 at 4:51 pm

    TeenDomainer

    Great idea with the long tail domains but like many others have said I think you would get more traffic if you built out small one page sites on them. I link my sites together on my same server and they have not been hurt by google.

    Brian

    March 28th, 2011 at 5:41 pm

    BullS

    If you have 100+ of the CItyhomecare domains, how are you going to have a one page website?

    homecaredomains.com

    Most of the traffic I get are from direct type in

    March 28th, 2011 at 5:57 pm

    Bill F

    I’m nowhere near the developer others are here, but wouldn’t it make more sense to put up a custom page within the dogwalker.com website to catch each long-tail redirect? Nothing spammy about that, it adds another page to the Google index, the visitor gets something tailored to what they were searching for, they’re not on a superfluous third site. Unless I’m missing something.

    March 28th, 2011 at 9:49 pm

    leadhead

    A strategy I have been using is to get my current customers to become affiliates.
    Then I offer them 100% commissions. This works for me because I have a membership site but the structure could
    work well if you are trying to build a big list. I wrote a article on my results. You can read it here.

    March 28th, 2011 at 9:50 pm

    Elliot Silver

    @ Bill F.

    Already have those :)

    March 28th, 2011 at 9:50 pm

    Larry

    “However, when I had them on WhyPark, most did receive a few visits a month, so I can assume that traffic has continued.”

    If you have *only* a few visits per month they are probably baseline radiation meaning they are crawls from spiders and robots.

    March 29th, 2011 at 12:28 am

    matt cesit

    Awesome advise, Also I like to add this when we make websites to our customers we suggest them to buy their domain name with dash between words too such as http://www.HaveWebsite.com and http://www.Have-Website.com in case someone in future not get it and use it against you..

    March 29th, 2011 at 12:36 am

    Elliot Silver

    @ Larry

    It’s a possibility, but a few of the WP sites did earn some revenue, so I am sure not all of the visits were bots.

    March 29th, 2011 at 7:58 am

    Andy (AgedDomainfinder)

    @NameClerk,

    I agree with your approach. As long as the content on those mini-sites is unique and non-spammy it will work great.

    @Elliot,

    Like Richard said you could host them all on the same server.
    You could also get different IPs on the same server.
    If no ‘spammy’ techniques (spun/morphed content, cloaking etc) are used, the ‘worst’ thing that can happen’ is that 2 or more of your sites rank in the top 10 for a certain keyword. (end result: more traffic for you).

    March 29th, 2011 at 11:28 am

    Braden

    I’ve been buying longtails for nearly 8 years and (up until about 4 years ago) redirected them to appropriate pages of my main sites. I then started developing mini sites by hand. The sites weren’t great and the maintenance even worse but this proved more effective than the redirects. It wasn’t until about 18 months ago that platform development finally started to work. I’ve tested several platforms (and continue to) but, by far, the best is Epik. I now have about 8k sites on the Epik platform with another 5k in the queue. (Full disclosure: after about 4k sites, I took an equity interest in Epik)

    Redirecting longtails is certainly better than nothing but you can do much better. This attempts to capture roughly 10% of the possible traffic from the exact phrase (direct navigation). Microsites, on the other hand, get indexed (possibility to sell them) and have the opportunity to capture the other 90% (search traffic).

    This structure will go much further than redirects alone.

    As for multiple sites on the same server, Epik has all that figured out and can explain how it all works.

    March 29th, 2011 at 11:32 am

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