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Buyer Beware: Harrison's Domains Are Worthless


Earlier today, I wrote about an upcoming domain auction where Craig Harrison, a Colorado real estate agent, plans to sell 2,600 geographic domains.

The names all contain a city name followed by a term like “RealEstateListings.com.” The seller claims the names are valuable for their SEO merit. He and his consulting firm believe a name like “ShreveportRealEstateListings.com” will get a natural boost in search engine rankings for real estate because of its keywords.

The seller is wrong. A simple talk with anyone from Google would tell you what while, yes, search engines to give extra weight to keyword-rich domains, spider bots can’t parse words when no separators are present. Unlike the human eye, search engines cannot tell where spaces belong when not present. So Google would read “ShreveportRealEstateListings.com” as one word. To get any SEO benefit, the name would have to contain dashes: Shreveport-Real-Estate-Listings.com.

Not to mention that the extra weight domain keywords provide in search engine rankings is negligible at best. The seller is giving an impression that owning “SeattleRealEstateListings” will instantly get the owner a good place on Google, when in reality site content and backlinks are much more important. Did I mention that Google can’t split up domain keywords without the use of dashes?

One real estate SEO expert, commenting on another site, said:

This really is nothing more than a publicity stunt that falls short for anyone who has any knowledge about domains. I pity the person who sees this as a good investment.

The 2,600 domains being auctioned off this Thursday are worthless. Anyone who buys them is going to be sourly disappointed.

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