Google recently published pieces of information about how the company handles new domains. It has finally shed some light to resolve some of the webmasters’ questions. With the information provided by the tech giant, it eliminates misconceptions about how these assets must be treated.
The search engine giant verified that its system treats the new top level domains the same way it treats other domains. For webmasters, this isn’t a surprise considering Google’s position on this for some time.
Can Googlebot Crawl IDN TLDs?
These top level domains can be used the same way as other TLDs. It treats the Punycode version of its hostname the same way as its unencoded version.
What this means to webmasters? They don’t need to redirect them separately. However, when using non-ASCII characters, Google reminds website owners to use UTF-8 for its path and query-string in its URL.
In terms of .brand TLD, Google treats it equally as other TLDs. This means that they won’t have more weight on how Google crawls or indexes the URL.
Country code top level domains or ccTLDs will tell Google that such website is more relevant in a certain country. These ccTLDs are used to geotarget the website. However, Google will still treat new region or city top-level domains just like other geoTLD, regardless of how it looks in a specific region.
Then again, Google explains that some exceptions will come down the line. It depends on how they’re going to be used in practice. This gives webmasters new hope in acquiring new gTLDs to boost site ranking.
Moving Website without Losing Search Rank
When you look at Google’s Help Center regarding site move documentation, you’ll find it there that Google treats any type of move as other site move. Google said that processing domain changes can take some time. Thus, the company recommends getting a domain that satisfies your company’s long-term requirements.
What this means to buyers of new TLDs? TLDs will not offer intrinsic value when it comes to improving SEO. Google’s algorithms don’t include the latest TLDs as a ranking factor. These domains can show in generic search using a keyword. People can also search through Top Level Domains extension, as they wish.
If the new TLDs become popular, Google doubts that it would become a ranking factor. For now, as Google indicated, the company doesn’t treat those TLDs differently. For this search engine giant, the use of the latest TLDs won’t give inherent ranking advantage.