In my experience the value of "some", not all, Exact Match Domains (EMDs) has plummeted . . starting with Dot Net EMDs. The devaluation has cascaded into all manner of new gTLDs.
The general decline coincided with the un-weighting of EMDs in search engine algorithms.
On the flip side, robust .Com and .Org EMDs still "have legs" in my experience - both as to value and utility - for a variety of reasons.
Here's what I observe and/or what I have experienced:
- They play nicely in social media settings since they are easy to remember
- IF you have the benefit of "the real deal domain" the pretenders to the domain tend to suffer at the hands of folks on social media who "remember" the real word/phrase + default to the presumed TLD and not to some made up pretender. (Likely explains why many startups move from their .io domains to the matching .com once they prove their vitality.).
- Social references to easy to recall EMDs appears to play into SERPs in a round about way ~citations, virality, etc.
- Did I say "Easy to remember", as in billboard-able and therefore enhanced utility value across more than just search or SERPs: billboards, TV spots, radio spots. (In my local TV market I know Mr. "I am THE injury lawyer @ InjuryLawyer.com!")
- Decreased marketing = branding costs in an ever cluttered and competitive digital world still argues (to many) for the utility of EMDs.
- There's more but . .
So, while I wanted to say STFU to everyone who was publicly talking about the benefit of EMDs back in the day (STFU ~"Sure, go ahead and rub the shortcomings of search algos in the engineers faces. That'll work.), I equally want to hand a less shrill bit of . . guidance . . to those talking down EMDs today.
It ain't over 'til it's over and the value of EMDs doesn't reside only in the ephemera of weighting of "words in domains" in search engine ranking signals.
Anyone bemoaning the decline of their EMD holdings? What was the "best" EMD that you just let slip away (expire)? What were you thinking when you let it go?
Anyone still holding EMDs . . in any gTLD other than
.Com or .Org? I guess there's a few holders of .Info or other gTLDs, but I'm also guessing that your non-dot-com/org EMDs are very robust one word domains. What say you, holders of other gTLDs? I'm okay if you post a few of your very best with your EMDs with a "statement of reason(s)" for holding tight, including any evidence to back up your thinking. EDIT: Fixed typo
[edited by: Webwork at 9:59 pm (utc) on Nov 16, 2017]