I know there are a lot of domain investors who have developed one or more websites, and many have seen success in terms of traffic and advertisers for one or more website. I want to make a suggestion to those of you who may have local directory sites for national services or products, and I will use DogWalker.com as my example.
If possible, you should consider hand registering long tail domain names to help drive traffic to your site. You can either build mini sites (which I do not do) to drive traffic to the main site, or you can do a 301 redirect, which won’t give you much SEO value, but they could drive traffic to your site.
I own domain names like PhiladelphiaDogWalking.com, LasVegasDogWalker.com, CharlotteDogWalkers.com, and many other large city names that are related (all hand registered). These names are all forwarded to the main page on DogWalker.com for each city, allowing type in traffic to find the page they want.
Here’s my rationale. I pay under $10 for a hand registered domain name. I also pay Adwords somewhere between $.75 and $1.75 or so per click, depending on the keyword. Assuming I get 8-12 visits a year, the names pay for themselves. It’s great because when someone types in LasVegasDogWalker.com, it’s very targeted traffic.
In addition, these names also have intrinsic value to others as well, since they’re descriptive domain names. In other words, I could sell any of these names if that will be beneficial to my business. Perhaps I could sell a name like BrooklynDogWalking.com to a company in Brooklyn for $1,500 and an annual listing on DogWalker.com + a link back. I haven’t done this yet, but it’s a possibility.
To be totally truthful, I don’t have a way to track the traffic from these domain names since they are 301 redirects. However, when I had them on WhyPark, most did receive a few visits a month, so I can assume that traffic has continued.
I recommend you look into doing this. I know some of my competitors are doing the exact same thing, and I am sure yours are as well.