Let’s face it. If you only list your domains on mainstream marketplaces and/or forums, those listings are not search engine optimized (SEO’d) for your specific domain, unless you start creating inbound links from your blog or other sites. But instead of helping a 3rd party website with their traffic, it is much better use of your valuable time to SEO domain listings that you control and on pages that are on a site that you own. This will have long-term results that will continue to benefit your online property even after you sell those domains. SEO can dramatically increase the exposure of your domains and get more eyeballs seeing them. The SEO tools available to you in Domain Market Pro are of huge help in this regard. In this article, we will discuss how you can SEO the domain listings and other pages on your domain marketplace.
We will discuss 3 important aspects involved in successful SEO:
- Google metrics takes into account specific preferences in analytics data that Google looks for in sites it wants to rank higher.
- On-page SEO involves both the code of the page as well as the content.
- Off-page SEO involves mainly inbound links from other websites. We already touched on this but will discuss it in more detail.
Understanding Google Metrics
Before we can start doing the SEO on our domain marketplace, we must understand Google metrics and what the search engine is looking for in websites that it decides to rank highest.
With the popularity of free tools such as the Chrome browser, Webmaster tools, and Analytics, Google has a pretty good idea as to who visits what websites, from where, how often, and how long they stay on any given Web page and site. These signals have taken on greater importance in SEO in recent months. Google wants sites highest in the search results that have the following:
Repeat visitors – visitors that come to your site often means that they like your site, that it contains what they are looking for and that it is popular. This can be determined by comparing New Users against all Users.
Average session duration – this shows how long visitors stay on your site. The longer people stay on your site indicates popularity as well.
Bounce rate – this metric shows the percentage of visitors that leave your site after only one page. So you want to keep this number low. High bounce rate shows that people either do not like the content or don’t find what they are looking for. Under 40 percent is excellent, 41 to 55 percent is considered average, 56 to 70 percent is higher than average, over 70 is considered disappointing. This is the first answer you see that Google gives for “ideal bounce rate”, so we should be able to trust it.
The above metrics points have one thing in common. They show how much visitors like your site, how popular it is, and that visitors find what they are looking for (i.e. the site is relevant). Those are the kind of websites that Google wants highest in their search results.
Make sure you integrate Webmaster tools and Analytics to your domain marketplace. The data they provide will help you greatly in knowing how to improve those metrics for your marketplace, as well as other aspects of SEO.
TIP: If you find that your domain marketplace has a disappointing bounce rate because people are just visiting a single domain landing page and then leaving, switch to sales pages. Add content that encourages them to either browse other domain sales pages or other content pages.
Now that we know what metrics effect SEO then we can use that knowledge in optimizing the actual domain marketplace.
This aspect of SEO is basically helping the search engines decide how best to index your marketplace pages for specific keywords. Having this mind-frame will help you in optimizing your site. The on-page code is taken care of for you because DMP’s code is designed to be SEO-friendly. So you only need to worry about the content. Think in terms of keywords.
When you create or edit a listing for a specific domain, you need to decide which companies and industry are the best target. This will help you in selecting the best keywords for that domain listing. For example, if the domain is iDive.net, then the keywords will be “diving”, “scuba”, “snorkeling”, as well as, “dive gear”, “diving classes”, “dive app”, etc. So then you would use those keywords in creating a unique sales listing page using the fields for comments and keywords in the domain edit page.
Suppose you have another domain or more that fit the same category or industry, diving in our example above, like MustDive.com. Then, in addition to creating a unique sales page for the other domains, you may also want to write a blog post about ‘the value of owning a great diving domain’, what makes a great diving domain and why you need one, and link that blog post to the sales page of each domain as we have done in our examples, as well as the category page. Even though the blog post, sales and category pages are on the same website, it will help search engine bots to identify the specific keywords that the pages are targeting.
Keep in mind that what the search engines are looking for is quality original content so you want to avoid using cookie-cutter content as much as possible, even if the domains are in the same category. If you do use cookie-cutter content, the original content should be prominent. Also, it is important to note that any content must read or sound natural and not like you are trying to manipulate the search results. So avoid stuffing too many keywords in short amount of text.
TIP: When you create new pages and posts, keep the URL short. The part after the domain name: http://mydomainmarketplace.com/keep-this-short/. Make sure there are not too many dashes, ‘- -‘, or funny characters, ‘&%’, and remove stop words from the URL.
TIP: If you upload a logo for each domain, use a keyword in naming the file if possible. For example: diving-domain-idivenet.png. DMP will auto-generate the alt tags in the code for all images. Also, keep the file size as small as possible without losing too much detail, around 100 to 400 kb.
The way that search engines look at off-page SEO is as recommendations. So the more links there are to your domain marketplace, the more recommendations, then the search engines will consider those pages more relevant and rank those pages higher. But here is the caveat: people started to abuse this aspect of SEO and started to create massive amounts of links from poor quality websites in order to skew search results in their favor. And they would buy links from other websites or trade links for the same reason. All such practices are now frowned upon by Google. If you get caught doing that, then your site will eventually get de-indexed. So don’t do it. The short term benefits are not worth the long-term penalties. Then what is the right way of doing off-page SEO?
The first and easiest way of off-page SEO is utilizing social media to promote your domain sales pages. Post to sites like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and others. Do you have logos on your marketplace? Post them on Instagram and other networks that are image driven. Always make sure that you include a link to a targeted page on your marketplace.
Another way of off-page SEO is by guest-writing articles and submitting them to authoritative (established) websites. This takes more time and effort but if your articles get picked up by high quality websites then the effort will be well worth it. When you write an article, approach it the same way as you would writing a page or a blog post on your own site keeping in mind the points we wrote about above.
You might also consider writing press releases and submit them to PR distribution sites. Writing press releases about specific premium domains is another way to get inbound links. This is a practice used by some of the top domain brokers.
You should also link to your domain marketplace from any other 3rd party domain marketplaces that allow you to list your domains and create a seller profile.
TIP: Google considers links to interior pages as more important than links to the homepage. This is because interior pages are generally more focused or targeted than the homepage.
It is important to note that there are 2 types of inbound (or incoming) links: “do follow” and “no follow”. Do Follow are links that tell the search engines that they should follow the link and index or re-index the destination page. Naturally, these are the types of links that will benefit your site’s ranking the most. No Follow links are those that tell the search engine bots to ignore the destination page. This type of linking is used by social networks and most blog comments. You want a healthy mix of both types of links. Why? Because search engine bots are smart. If they only find “do follow” links then they will think that you are trying to manipulate the search results. Having both “do follow” and “no follow” incoming links show that the links are natural, organic, and that’s what the search engine algorithm is looking for.
The ultimate way of getting inbound links is by creating content on your own marketplace that people will want to link to. This is also called “link bait”. It is content that others will want to link to, and not because you asked them to. By writing compelling content and posting it to social media, the goal is that people will discover it and then will want to link to it. What kind of content can become “link bait”? This is a topic for whole new article, but briefly, some of the “link bait” content includes:
- Exhaustive how-to guides
- Breaking news
- In-depth articles on hot (current) topics
To get the best results, you should incorporate all of the above white-hat SEO techniques into your marketing strategy. Domain Market Pro offers you SEO and social media tools to allow for faster results and better precision when it comes to search engine optimizing your domain marketplace and sales pages.