Hello Jan, and welcome to the forums.
Most people I talk to feel there is only a very small edge in the search results from using the hyphen. But that kind of domain name has so many other drawbacks for real human people that it outweighs the tiny advantage. If you do use dashes in your domain name, most people feel that more than one can be a problem and it looks really spammy at any rate.
I feel there are MUCH more important factors in getting a good rank, so choose a name that's good for your business rather than thinking of search engine ranking in this area.
I would buy them both -- use apple-pear.com as the main domain and have applepear.com as a re-direct.
That way you can put applepear.com on your business cards and tell people, and at the same time you gain the advantage of apple-pear.com
I agree -- keep it down to one dash -- I recall one of the Google patents (?) specifically mentioned domain names with more than one dash as spammy.
The advantage is very positive on Y and MSN -- perhaps less so on G but definately a plus IMHO
>I recall one of the Google patents (?) specifically mentioned domain names with more than one dash as spammy
Dont believe everything you read. Google isnt going to punish some poor innocent webmaster simply for having fuzzy-blue-widgets because fuzzybluewidgets was already taken.
Now there will be webmasters awake at night afraid Google is going to penalize them for their two-dash websites. Even worse, they will blame all of their woes on having made the fatal mistake of registering a site with two dashes.
I know for a fact you can rank very well in Google for very competitive search terms using a domain with two dashes. You can rank well in MSN too, btw.
Yes, you can easily rank well for both.
I would also buy both domains but use the one without any dashes as my main site. Not all of course, but many many spammy and useless sites love to use dashes so I think using no dashes gives a better impression.
applepear.com is MUCH better as a brand, but register the other too so no one gets it.
|I know for a fact you can rank very well in Google for very competitive search terms using a domain with two dashes. You can rank well in MSN too, btw. |
I totally agree, and have deduced from the many sites I manage that the hyphen does NOT hurt your rankings in any way at all. I personally believe that it makes no difference one way or the other, though some time ago it may have been beneficial as a separator of words.
I also agree with walkman that "applepear" is much better for branding purposes, but I'm not so sure people really pay a lot of attention to the domain name. You could well register www.apple-pear.com and brand "Apple Pear" or whatever. People tend to look at the title in SERPs and a quick glance at the description. If they like it they click. The important thing obviously is to rank well for "apple pear".
|What would give better search results if visitors type in Google the word "apple" and the word "pear": www.applepear.com or www.apple-pear.com? |
I donít know what your experience has been but mine has been that people are well meaning, but rarely get it right, and they end up linking to you with;
<a href="http://www.applepear.com/">Apple Pear</a>
The answer to the question is all about swimming downstream, IMHO. Branding sure, but unfortunately itís still all about links and anchor text. Hopefully at some point that will change, but not any time soon I donít think.
How could ever successfully brand a hyphenated domain name?
It's better to get your thinking cap on or buy a domain name that people will remember :)