Protect Your Brand from URL Typo Squatters

I went to jump onto this morning to get my fill of the Microsoft reshuffling news and instead of clicking over from my reader or bookmarks, just typed the URL into my browser.

I made the mistake of typing in however and found a typo squatting page set up with Google AdWords domain parking results. The results however, are pretty irrelevant, dealing with recycling (instead of tech products); perhaps recycling pays more per click in AdWords and the page generates clicks.

Thought it worth sharing. From now on, I’ll use my bookmarks.

What are you doing to protect your company’s common typos and protect your potential customers from falling upon typo squatters?

Generally, when I begin consulting on search engine optimization and online marketing, from some clients I’ll produce a list of common typos which can be made from their brand name.

By identifying such URL typos (I’m naturally skilled at making spelling mistakes) then redirecting those domains to the core company domain, the brand is more protected and a valued customer is not sent to the company’s competition OR a list of Google search ads (accompanied by a pop-up window).

The initial revenue to purchase those domains is minimal, and the overall effect can last a lifetime.

If you have any other tips you’d like to share, please feel free to leave them in the comments below.

Loren Baker
Loren Baker is the Founder of SEJ, an Advisor at Alpha Brand Media and runs Foundation Digital, a digital marketing strategy & development agency.
Loren Baker

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16 thoughts on “Protect Your Brand from URL Typo Squatters

  1. Is the main reason that we even have to deal with this problem at all the fact that Google splits advertisers’ money with such squatters?

    If the problem was attacked at the root, could each individual avoid the above searching and registration costs?

  2. We generally advise clients to purchase common typo domains to limit the damage also.

    You may want to try to backorder some of the domains causing the problems in case of a drop.

  3. I wish we had a domain reputation model and the ability to revoke domains that squat. Problem solved. The way things work now, you sue the domain squatter just like Myspace did in the UK and won.

  4. Well, It may not be feasible option for small businesses as they don’t have enough time and money to spent on it.

    I think it is always better to register all the extensions and typos to prevent squatting. Today the domain costs are like peanuts and they are worth investing.

  5. We also tell our larger clients that it would behoove them to purchase common misspellings of their URL(s). In addition, the best way to avoid a squatter is to pick a domain name that is easy to spell and easy to remember.

  6. Very valid point being raised here…another shout for adhering to the “keep it simple” train of thought when talking URL’s.

    When creating a new brand one can create a brand new word to go with the concept, but with older more established brands it makes sense to cover the potential typo slips

  7. Only big companies can afford it. The average small business owners cannot afford to register any possible typo to their domain names just for the sake or getting the few missed clicks.

  8. I have always found people who make spelling mistakes irritating in the extreme. Most of them are too lazy to use a dictionary, preferring instead to force me to waste my time and energy trying to figure out what they are trying to say ! How many times have you read ‘would of’ ‘or could of’ and wanted to tare your hare out ! Allot I bet ! Now with typosquitting I can get my own back ! Thank you God for all those lazy parasitic indivduals you made in Your infinite wisdom who think speling words corectly is just to much effort. They annoy me intensely and I have no sympathy for them whatsoever. Thank You also for all those people who never bothered to learn to touch type. How many times have the great unwashed looked at me askance when I have had the temerity to point out their disgraceful and totally avoidable spelling misteaks. At last I have a means of propheting from their stupidity and laziness – Hallelujah ! I knew God had a plan. Go forth and make money from the lazy and the purveyors of advertising. Long may I prophet from it. What gose around comes around. Do they ever consider purchasing a dikshonary ? No ! Do they even bother using a spelchecker ? No ! I spell the way I like they fume, who are you to disrespect my lazy ass ? Do they consider that way lies madness, where “words mean what I want them to mean no more and no less” ? No ! Cry havoc and let loose the dogs of war. Get a life they cry ! God made typosquatters to force the middle classes to educate their youth better instead of telling them anything goes. Do your own thing the pinko liberals preach. Ten out of ten for the effort of turning up to skool, whether you actually learn anything is irrelevant you can speak and right however you like nothing matters, as long as you’re having phun. Well the result of all this wishy-washy liberalism is typosquatters ! Don’t blame us we are merely here to draw your attention to the lack of standards you have created. Thak you and good night. :-)