In a recent discussion via Google Hangouts, Gary Illyes said keywords in TLDs, specifically those new vanity TLDs, do not improve your rankings.
One viewer wanted more clarification. Was he referring to the keywords in the URL? Or was it the TLD keywords, specifically? At the 12:45 minute mark John was asked to clarify this. His response? Google ignores the words in the TLD completely.
To clarify, the TLD of the URL is the domain.tld. Our site, for example – the TLD would be .com. While domain registrars have pushed these new vanity TLDs fairly hard over the last year – such as .design, .attorney, .seo, etc. – Google’s John Mueller has clarified that Google’s algorithm ignores these extensions completely.
Transcript from the video clip:
Viewer (Barry): So, I know we shouldn’t care about keywords in the URLs and so forth, but Google has said over time that keywords in the URL do get looked at by the algorithms, they might have a tiny little, tiny little, itty-bitty factor in terms of rankings. But you specifically called out saying that keyword rich TLDs, like .attorney for example… Are they not looked at all? Do you say anything in the TLD is not, the keywords in the TLDs are not looked at all? Are they excluded? Or are they the same as keywords in the URL?
John Mueller: As far as I understand, it’s pretty much completely. So the TLD is not something we take into account there.
Viewer (Barry): At all?
John Mueller: Yea.
So while these new “fancy” TLDs are nice to look at, they serve zero purpose for your SEO efforts.
Keyword-rich domain names to boost search rankings?
It’s also important to note that keyword packed domain names themselves are also not worth investing in. (ie: Pensacolawebsitedesign.com) Small businesses just starting out often think that will help them to rank locally. However, John Mueller busted this myth in a post on the Webmaster Central Help Forum.