Louis Nava

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I'm not sure if this is the correct category to post this but it goes hand in hand with local search.

I've been searching for a few answers over the weekend and haven't had much luck. I came across a specific scenario...Maybe this is something that somebody here has already faced and can give some advice.

Scenario:

Local Flower shop is re-branding their business name and website from "The Rose Shop" to "The Garden Shop". It's a little broader name to allow people to understand that they are experts in more than just roses. They plan on keeping their "theroseshop"<.com> domain name, website look and feel, but will be changing the title, a few pages and content to reflect "The Garden Shop".

I have heard over and over again that keywords in domain name doesn't matter a whole lot anymore these days. So I'm curious to hear other peoples opinions and expert advice, if this would be a safe move without having to register a new domain name and go through the whole website migration process and 301's, so on and so forth.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but, in my mind this would only be bad for humans when trying to find the specific domain name for garden shop instead of the rose shop. But, if on-site SEO was done properly, Google eventually would know that the "Garden shop" = "theroseshop"<.com>

Thanks
 

Linda Buquet

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Hi Louis, if it were me I would not change the domain. Like you said if it's branded with Logo, content and SEO right, should not be an issue. However of course any time you start tweaking SEO you can have rank drops but hopefully temporary.
 

Louis Nava

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Yeah to add to my post...

many people think that you have to have your domain match the title of your website, blog or business name... I don't see why this has to be true.
 

Nevyana

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Hi Louis,

There is no need your domain name to reflect your company name. Many people prefer to focus on exact match domain names (especially lawyers) and this made Google to decrease the weight of kws found in domain name as a factor calculated in their ranking algo. As long as you keep the website equipped with fresh, long, relevant content you could rank for whatever you are going for.

Roses on one hand in my opinion - it might be pretty subjective though, really sounds more relevant to a flowers shop than garden (which might be perceived as a landscaping service or tips) thus it is a nice choice that you have decided to keep the original domain name.

What is more the first thing that comes to mind when searching online for a bouquet are roses and not garden, so again you are having a winning hand here.

The thing to focus on is creating regular content that is area specific and that each page or blog article focuses on a single key phrase or set of key phrases so that you could avoid kw cannibalism.
 
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The weight EMDs carried got spanked a long time ago, keywords in the domain don't have the same ranking power they used to.

If they plan on keeping the domain and just changing the title and onpage stuff then this move should be pretty harmless overall. It could be worse.
 
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I agree with everything mentioned here but I'll throw another consideration out there. From a pure branding perspective there could be a potential disconnect. If they are changing their name to: The Garden Shop but the domain is: TheRoseShop.com, it sounds kind of goofy. Imagine the radio ad...

"To learn more about The Garden Shop, visit TheRoseShop.com today." What????

Then think of the billboards and flyers and anything else they do offline. The business name will be similar but different from the domain. As a business owner, that would drive me crazy, but then again I'm anal retentive and like everything neat and tidy:D

If this were my business, I would take the plunge and move over to a domain that better fit the new business name and brand. I wouldn't care about all the work involved as I would be looking for a long-term solution. At the very least, I would register TheGardenShop.com and redirect it to TheRoseShop.com. That way I could still advertise the new domain in radio ads, billboards, flyers, etc.

Travis
 
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