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ICANN Approval of New TLDs and what it Means for SEO

ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers), the governing body for internet domain names, recently approved the release of generic top level domains (gTLDs) from its current number of 22. Slated to be released in January of 2012, ICANN’s decision will allow the creation of TLDs in any language or script. So how does ICANN’s decision affect SEO? Probably not as much as we might think. Search engines like Google and Bing do not differentiate between a .com and a .net suffix, and certainly do not give a .com any additional ranking power because of it. Where there might be a bit of opportunity would be the use of keywords within the URL itself, however, keyword rich URLs is only one of many organic ranking factors and are less significant than in the past. SEO requires more than just a great domain name and more TLDs doesn’t necessarily equal more rankings.

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4 Responses to ICANN Approval of New TLDs and what it Means for SEO

  1. Matt Cullen says:

    Good info. $185K for a registration of a brand TLD. That sounds like a bargain to me. You get to OWN a TLD!

    I’m interested in the .nyc – that was recently approved – haven’t seen any specific details on it yet, but it has great possibilities for unbranded KWs.

  2. Kathy says:

    Can you imagine how much unique content, which would improve a company’s organic ranking could be created for the $185,000 gTLDs price tag?

  3. Ryan Fortin says:

    This will be interesting to see how this plays out. Honestly, I think it will be a ranking signal on some level just because of what it implies about the domain owner. There will be very few spammers dishing out the cash it takes to own one of these domains.

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