How much weight does the number of years a domain is registered for have on ranking?
Don’t worry about that very much, not very much at all in fact. Danny Sullivan had asked about this recently because there were some registrars that were sending around emails saying: “Did you know that Google gives you a bonus in ranking if you register your site for three or more years?” And just to clarify – that is not based on anything that we’ve said. The only thing that might be coming from us is that we did file a patent that basically said we can use historical data in our ranking, so you could, in theory, look how many years that site has been registered for, just like you could look at the history of a site to say whether you think it’s high quality or low quality.
We have a lot of ideas and we file a lot of patents and that does not mean that all of that gets used in the ranking. So, I don’t want people to jump to the assumption that just because there was one patent filed in 2002 and 38 claims down somebody said: “Well, you can look at how many years a site is registered for” and jump to the conclusion that we use that in our ranking.
Make great content and don’t worry nearly as much about how many years your domain is registered for. Just because someone is sending you an email that says, Google does or even may use this in ranking, does not mean that you should automatically take them at face value. What makes a really big difference is the quality of your site and the sort of links that you have pointing to you, not – is my site registered for three or four years, instead of one or two years.
by Matt Cutts - Google's Head of Search Quality Team