We get quite a few requests from real estate agents to “forward” their domains. They will load up on a few good keyword rich domain names because they are affordable, or to keep competition from getting them and then ask us to simply forward them to their main sites so that when the other address is typed in visitors are automatically sent to their main domain – sounds like a GREAT idea, right?
…Not so much.
It SEEMS like a good idea…Who wouldn’t want a bunch of keyword rich domain names to use for people to find them? Well, unfortunately this technique actually doesn’t yield much (if any) search engine power, and can in fact be dangerous if not handled correctly. Besides which search engines don’t give any weight to simple forwarded urls; any “link juice” they share with the site which the url is forwarding to is nominal at best.
Domain forwarding will not produce any extra link juice or authority, and so will not result in increased rankings.
That said there are some good reasons to use a forward:
- You have a really powerful domain name that people might type into the address bar naturally (i.e. “nike.com”, “homes.com” ) – unfortunately MOST of these are long since taken.
- You want to redirect those who type in the wrong domain extensions (i.e. .org to .com) or misspell your URL.
- You need a shorter URL to use for print advertising but don’t want to move your other (perhaps older/more established) domain.
So, what are the other options?
You can put those other URL’s to work for you! It’s easy enough to do – either setup a blog on a service like WordPress (you can setup a blog on your own hosting through wordpress.org or wordpress.com requires a $14/yr payment for domain mapping), or create a stand alone lead capture website.
Real Estate Blogs are a great way to work a niche market, like foreclosures, or offer resources to a community you are working in. They can increase your online exposure and help drive traffic to your main site.
Lead Capture websites for REALTORS® are also a good choice. TourRE can provide these for as little as $50 and they act as a not only a means to drive traffic to your main domain, but also as an external source of backlinks.
We hope this article has helped clear up why forwarding can be a bad thing as well as how you can still utilize those extra domain names you have lying around. Still have questions? Contact Tour Real Estate!