Google and SEO

Google New Update on Expired Domains

Google released a new update on March 5th 2024 and one of the clauses specifically deals with expired domains and repurposing them to gain traction faster.

Here’s what Google said

Expired domain abuse

Expired domain abuse is where an expired domain name is purchased and repurposed primarily to manipulate Search rankings by hosting content that provides little to no value to users. For example, someone might purchase a domain previously used by a medical site and repurpose that to host low quality casino-related content, hoping to be successful in Search based on the domain’s reputation from a previous ownership.

Expired domain abuse isn’t something people accidentally do. It’s a practice employed by people who hope to rank well in Search with low-value content by using the past reputation of a domain name. These domains are generally not intended for visitors to find them in any other way but through search engines. It’s fine to use an old domain name for a new, original site that’s designed to serve people first.

In the past, people bought expired domains and used them for other purposes. But maybe it’s good for everyone and provides a level playing ground. Because have you looked at the prices of expired domains lately? Hoarders of domain names will suffer a great loss if the domain age no longer matters.


There’s also a new policy on site reputation abuse. This is what Google says


Site reputation abuse is when third-party pages are published with little or no first-party oversight or involvement, where the purpose is to manipulate Search rankings by taking advantage of the first-party site’s ranking signals. Such third-party pages include sponsored, advertising, partner, or other third-party pages that are typically independent of a host site’s main purpose or produced without close oversight or involvement of the host site, and provide little to no value to users.

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Our new policy doesn’t consider all third-party content to be a violation, only that which is hosted without close oversight and which is intended to manipulate Search rankings. For example, many publications host advertising content that is intended for their regular readers, rather than to primarily manipulate Search rankings. Sometimes called “native advertising” or “advertorial”, this kind of content typically wouldn’t confuse regular readers of the publication when they find it on the publisher’s site directly or when arriving at it from Google’s search results. It doesn’t have to be blocked from Google Search.

In addition there are new policies on AI content. The summary is that all content needs to be helpful and fulfill search intent.


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