How does search engines treat TLD top level domains vs second level domains such as .us,.ph,.jp?

Categories: .US Sites, Google, SEO, TLD

Author: Pascal Perry

You want to know what difference search engines (SE) make between gTLD's (generic TLD's) and ccTLD's (country-code TLD's).

No more "It is said", "I've heard that", or even spammy answers from self-promoting SEO professionals. So here is what Matt Cutts–Google's Evangelist–has to say about gTLD vs. ccTLD (see the source section below for the link to the video "How do meta geo tags influence the search results?"):

"We tend to look at the IP address, we tend to look at the gTLD or the ccTLD. There's also something in Google's Webmaster Tools where you can say my site is not just a .com, but it's a .com that really pertains to, for instance, UK, New Zealand or Australia. (...) So, you should spend your time trying to make sure you have the right domain name, the right IP address if you can, and then definitely if you have content that's geo-located, even if it's a subdomain or a subdirectory, you can specify that within Google's Webmaster Tools and say yes, this is relevant for this particular country."

In a nuttshell, a search performed from a given country gives a boost to: –a ccTLD pertaining to that country; –a site with an IP address from that country, regardless of its TLD (gTLD or ccTLD); –a gTLD should it be more relevant, regardless of its IP address (whether from that country or not).

So for best resul ts,

make sure to geotarget your site by:

–selecting an IP address from the country of preference, if possible;
–chosing a ccTLD; and
–explicitly selecting your country of preference from Google Webmaster Tools (i.e., select the country from the menu "Site configuration > Settings > Geographic target")


Matt Cutts: "How do meta geo tags influence the search results?"…
Matt Cutts: "What impact does server location have on rankings?"

For the original article go to: