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reverting to the EMD is likely something it would detect as manipulative, imo, so once you move, you may not be able to "just undo the 301" and return to the "status quo" of today. It's possible the change/reversion wouldn't "undo" the move so the site ranks the same as it did before the move
I notice you mention the manipulation patent quite frequently.
To my knowledge I've read all of the patents that have been featured on here over the last 10+ years, including this one.
A name which is descriptive and easy to remember is far better from a marketing point of view.
I've never been big on links so I think a link penalty is highly unlikely, however this term is more competitive than others and the name has attracted natural links using the EMD as anchor text.
My EMDs are over ten years old. I got them because they were the logical choice. Still are. No way am I going to jump ship to new domains just to try and appease Google. That makes no sense at all. Not doing it.
I would actually wonder more about internal links and text. Does the particular site you're referring to use more "matching text" in internal links or on page than the others you have that are not affected do?
it used to be the case that you would rank for your EMD keyword almost with no effort and definitely with no quality links required. Now it seems you need to build trust and authority to your website to rank for your EMD keyword.
I'd say that's exactly the point of the EMD update. .
However if that were the case I think it would be affecting company name searches and wreaking havoc across the index.
why would switching to a non EMD cure the issue for some people?
So some people's sites have something good going that isn't just EMD keyword matching, but possibly this last EMD update trivialized that.
Of course, saying this the first thing I think of is Cars.com commercials - they use this as their brand name and they show up for it - perhaps big enough for a manual approval - who knows - all speculation of course.