Google has rolled out an update that penalizes businesses that practice domain leasing.
So what is domain leasing?
If you have been renting out your domain briefly to another company or a third party, that is domain leasing.
When I say renting out your domain, you don’t rent out all of it. You basically rent out a folder, or a sub-domain.
For instance, let’s say your domain is yourdomain.com. Assuming its quite popular you have every chance of monetising it.
While there are various ways to monetize a popular domain, one of the ways is to lease it out to a third party.
So that third party occupies a sub-domain in your name like coupons.yourdomain.com.
I have used coupons as an example because that is one of the most popular leasing that’s happening around among the big companies like CNN.
The third parties use the popularity of the big company to get traction. And the big companies use their popularity to make some commissions.
Of course, the third parties pay the big companies in the form of commission or pay a rent for the duration of leasing.
Either way, it is a win-win for both the parties.
Usually the big companies put up a disclaimer saying that they or the staff of their company are not related to the content presented on that leased domain.
Now the recent Google update is targeted on these leased domains – one of the main reasons being the content on these domains is usually pretty thin and similar in multiple instances.
And the content is published purely with the monetization goal.
So as a small business owner, should you be worried about this domain leasing Google update?
In short, you don’t have to be worried.
If you have a super popular domain and if you have monetized it by leasing it out, then yes, you should be worried.
Or if you have a small business (in the lines of coupons, reviews etc.) that could use the popularity of a big company and if you are willing to pay the whopping lease fee, then you should be worried.
But most small business owners don’t fall into either of this category.
So there’s nothing to worry for the most part and you can mark yourself safe!
PS: Got more to say? Please share your thought in the comments below!
Really helpful & thanks for explaining in such a short span of time. what i remember, in previous updates Google said that any subdomain would be considered as the main domain and after that this type of activity (domain leasing) started in large scale. Correct me if I am misunderstood here. Now, they have started penalizing those sites.
Have a nice day ahead!
Shivam Choudhary says
Hey Jane, Thanks for clarifying, I saw some tweet regarding this yesterday but I was not clear about this update… it looks like this is the end of web 2.0 blogs
Founder of Blogging Nova
Lawal Rahman says
I had been looking for this Google update until I found it on your blog.
I hope this step taken by Google against big and popular websites would liberate many of us who are beginners and loyal Google users.
Patrice M Foster says
Jane, thanks for the clarification about “Domain Leasing” and why Google has taken a stand penalizing business…. I had no idea there was such a thing going on and why.
Jane Sheeba says
You are welcome Patrice!
It’s an interesting idea the pictures. On social media they can get publicity, tags, hashtags, views and clicks from people eating their competitor’s products. It’s free publicity. I need to tart thinking outside the box.
Thanks Jane for the Post! Very Helpful for everyone specially those who focuses on SEO.
Anabel Gonzalez says
This is good to know. I have noticed some of my websites receive the penalty. This clarification puts things into perspective.
Anabel Gonzalez – E & S Home Care Solutions
Michael Swengel says
Interesting. I’ll admit, I hadn’t heard of domain leasing previously. But it’s good to know Google doesn’t like it so I can avoid it in the future! 🙂