3 Things To Think About Before Developing A Domain

While I was at TRAFFIC this past week I had a chance to talk with a ton of people, many that I knew, and also many new faces that I met for the first time. I think one of the most common questions I was asked was what to think about when it comes to development. Of course with a beer in my hand I could go on with a list much longer than three, but it’s still early here and I don’t think my liver can take any more beer so I’ll stick to three things for this post:

  1. Are You Going To Be The Developer Or Are You Going To Pay A Developer? It’s important to decide whether you’ll be spending your time or your money building out a domain. Time is money so these are one in the same in many cases but I find that many new investors have a lot more time than money in which case you might be spending your nights and weekends on the project.
  2. Know Your Market. Look at who is on the first page of Google for the terms you want to rank well for and make sure you feel like there’s a chance you could outrank them. Sorry but if Best Buy and Amazon dominate the above-the-fold space your site probably isn’t going to stand a chance unless you have a really really big budget, which you don’t.
  3. You Need More Than Just Content. I said this during the panel I was on at TRAFFIC and I think it is a really important point. The whole idea that you can just build a site with a bunch of articles and watch the money come rolling in has pretty much gone away. Do something useful, provide a service, add something unique but do more than just writing general information articles about your subject, Wikipedia has you beat along with eHow and a zillion other sites.

As always feel free to add your own items to the list, comment on any of mine, or just say what’s on your mind!

{ 7 comments… add one }

  • TURIST October 12, 2012, 1:24 pm

    Hi Morgan,

    Thank you.
    It’s exactly what I found a one month later I started my “money making articles site”:)
    Content is stil King but “I need more than content”.

    I will add one item more.
    Start development when you only see potential Big Brand in name.
    With “zillions” possible domain names there are only some fit development because were born with Brand DNA.

    Reply
  • Emma October 12, 2012, 2:33 pm

    About knowing your market, you said the following: “Look at who is on the first page of Google for the terms you want to rank well for and make sure you feel like there’s a chance you could outrank them. Sorry but if Best Buy and Amazon dominate the above-the-fold space your site probably isn’t going to stand a chance unless you have a really really big budget, which you don’t.”. My question to you is this: Did Bestbuy and Amazon choose these names because they were/are the most popular and most searched keyword domains and that is the reason why they rank high in search engines??? I think a keyword domain name is not so important to develop a domain into a website. You just need to advertise the existence of your website and the product/service you are offering. If the product/service is good people will flood your website and you will somehow be in competition with Amazon and Bestbuy and share the profits of that business.

    Reply
  • Domain Names October 12, 2012, 4:19 pm

    With regard to ranking in search engines, you need to get lots of good backlinks as these are the most important ranking factor with Google and other major search engines.
    To be number one, you either need a massive budget or a portfolio of well anchored backlinks pointing to your website theme.
    Paying customers will always come first unless you have .edu and .gov websites linking back to you.

    Reply
  • Emma October 12, 2012, 5:30 pm

    Everything will come down to a product/service you are offering being having a demand, advertising the product/service you are offering, an attractive website and an easy to remember domain name. You will be ranked in search engines automatically no matter what,

    Reply
  • Morgan October 12, 2012, 9:19 pm

    @Emma – exact match domains have very little to do with ranking well in search. Both Best Buy and Amazon spend millions in SEO, unless you have a multi-million dollar SEO budget it will be impossible to compete. Still there are plenty of niches where the top sites have little to no SEO budgets, these are the low hanging fruit.

    @DomainNames – the name of the game used to be lots of backlinks, now with the algorithm updates that Google has made this year it’s not about lots of backlinks but instead about high quality backlinks. You can easily outrank a site with hundreds of low quality backlinks with just a few very high quality backlinks from high quality sources.

    Reply
  • steve October 13, 2012, 5:16 am

    are keywords specific domains a good investment f the key word is searched often? Example l bought a domain for $17last week. When i looked it up on google keyword search tool it showed the word is searched 60,000 times a month. Is this the direction i should go in when flipping domains?

    Reply
    • Morgan October 13, 2012, 11:05 am

      @steve – there are many things you want to look at before buying a domain but yes, the keywords are definitely very important. That being said, it is important to understand that buying a domain with particular keywords in it doesn’t mean you will immediately rank well for those keywords.

      Reply

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