EMD: Google Exact Match Domain Algorithm Update

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The head of Google’s anti-spam fighting team, Matt Cutts announced on September 27th 2012, Google rolled out a new small algorithm update to the ever growing updates Google keeps throwing at us to give the user a rich relevant search experience. The new Exact Match Domain Algorithm update is geared towards filtering out “low quality” exact match domains from showing in the search engine ranking results. This new algorithm update will effect about 0.6% of all English U.S based search queries with a noticeable effect. If you remember from our last post, Google’s noticeable effect means, “more than the norm”. Cutts added that this new algorithm update is in no way associated with Google’s Penguin or Panda algorithm updates. The Panda Algorithm update is being used by Google to filter out low quality content, while Google’s Penguin Algorithm update is set out to fight web spam in the search results.

Exact Match Domains, are domain names that exactly match a search query being performed. For example, if I was looking for a company that sold or specialized in keyboard makers, and owned the domain, KeyboardMakers DOT com, that would be an exact match domain. On the other hand, this does not mean that sites with exact match domains will be affected or are doomed now that this algorithm is taking shape. Google specifically stated that, “EMD was designed to go after poor quality sites that also have exact match domain names.” You can still find plenty of sites out there with good keywords in their domain; Google has not wiped them out due to the fact that they provide high quality content information. This algorithm update is targeted towards low quality sites that are riding on the basis of exact keyword matching with their domain name with the result of driving more traffic to their site. An example of this would be a site with a domain like, “free-computer-help.com”. This type of domain is very generic with a lot of keywords in it, but has no real branding behind it. Most of these low quality sites with domains such as this lack quality content, lack page rank and mostly parked domains with no real relevancy on the web. If you have some of these domains online that are full fledged web sites with good quality, then this algorithm update should not effect your site or your rankings very much. The easy way to look at it is this, Google is not targeting Exact Match Domains in particular, but targeting Exact Match Domains with low quality bad content are. Looks like the free ride may be over for these types of companies on the web. Stay tuned for more info as we receive it.