I read a WSJ article this morning announcing that for the first time in more than a decade, a whole slew of new and descriptive domains are scheduled to roll out this year. The actual domains haven't been revealed yet, but apparently we may see domains like .plumber and .newyork.
As far as a business's domain goes, the following factors are relevant to local search ranking:
- Domain authority of website
- Product and/or service keyword in website URL
- Geographic keyword in website URL
It's unclear how, or even if, these new domains will factor into Google's local algo. From one standpoint, it's probably safe to assume a domain like .plumber won't have the inherent authority as for example a .com or .org would, but at the same time, from a Local SEO standpoint, a geographic reference like .seattle or a specific keyword inclusion like .dentist is undeniably attractive.
Fundamentally important to local ranking is that a business's website give clear and accurate location information as well as including the right keywords related to their products or services within their site so that search engine spiders will quickly find and index the information.
If these new domains do indeed have an impact on local ranking, will businesses flock to secure their primary city name or service keyword? We'll have to wait and see, but I could certainly see this being something attractive to businesses with multiple locations.