For the past month or so, some folks on WebmasterWorld have been discussing recent changes in Yahoo’s SERPs. Some of the more recent comments suggest that Yahoo is looking heavily at keywords in domain names.
I agree 1,000%.
As I type this, I’m looking at a site that is currently at #10 on Yahoo for [cityname real estate]. No state modifier or anything, just the city name. This is a competitive term, although not as bad as Seattle Real Estate or Las Vegas Real Estate. Here’s what you need to know about the site ranking at #10:
- It has no age authority. The site was launched two months ago.
- It has low inbound link quantity. Yahoo Site Explorer shows the entire site has 35 IBL’s from only three domains.
- It has low inbound link quality. Those 35 links are all from low authority pages. If you want to use Google PR as a measure of authority, there’s one link from a PR=3 page, one from a PR=2 page, and the others are no PR or PR=1.
- It has no boost from clickthru data. Get this: Yahoo has not sent one visitor to this high-ranking site. So, it’s not like click-thru data in the SERPs is boosting the site.
This is a new site, with few links, no authority links, and very little traffic. In two months, the site has less than 100 visits. So why does it rank in the Top 10 for a competitive term like [cityname real estate]?
I can only assume it’s because the domain is [cityname real estate]blog.com. There are simply no other prime factors I can come up with when I see the Yahoo SERPs.
The site, for what it’s worth, doesn’t show up in the Top 50 on Google for the same [cityname real estate] query. And on MSN, another algo which we all believe to rely heavily on keywords-in-domain-names, the site currently ranks #13.
What do YOU see in the Yahoo SERPs lately?