While it’s generally known within the SEO industry, few business owners are aware the amount of years you register your domain name impacts its search engine rankings.
Need to renew soon? Look at it as an opportunity.
The logic is based on the view that most spammy sites are fly-by-night operations. They show up, scam people, and disappear (either by choice or they get knocked of Google’s index). On the other hand, legitimate businesses plan on sticking around for a long time, and register domains accordingly. One of the reasons might be to ensure the domain name doesn’t lapse and become available on the open market.
Rest assured this isn’t a rumour. In fact, it’s documented in patent applications filed by Google. Here are some relevant claims taken directly from the patent #20050071741:
1. A method for scoring a document, comprising: identifying a document; obtaining one or more types of history data associated with the document; and generating a score for the document based on the one or more types of history data.
2. The method of claim 1, wherein the one or more types of history data includes information relating to an inception date; and wherein the generating a score includes: determining an inception date corresponding to the document, and scoring the document based, at least in part, on the inception date corresponding to the document.
38. The method of claim 1, wherein the one or more types of history data includes domain-related information corresponding to domains associated with documents; and wherein the generating a score includes: analyzing domain-related information corresponding to a domain associated with the document over time, and scoring the document based, at least in part, on a result of the analyzing.
99. Certain signals may be used to distinguish between illegitimate and legitimate domains. For example, domains can be renewed up to a period of 10 years. Valuable (legitimate) domains are often paid for several years in advance, while doorway (illegitimate) domains rarely are used for more than a year. Therefore, the date when a domain expires in the future can be used as a factor in predicting the legitimacy of a domain and, thus, the documents associated therewith.
The bottom line is if Google takes the registration period seriously, so should you. The next opportunity you have, register your domain for five or even 10 years, which is currently the max.