What are Exact Match Domains?
Exact match domains (EMDs) are keywords or phrases in the form of a domain name. Let’s say you own a flower shop in Boston. You may register flowershopinboston.com and redirect that to your main site in hopes that someone searches for “flower shop in boston”. In the past Google loved exact match domains so much that it would put them at the top of the search results.
Why can they hurt you?
In September 2012 Google decided that it no longer liked EMDs and penalized people who owned them. Some redirected to the owners main site, others were just spammy one-page sites that didn’t give the searcher what they were looking for. These penalties were great for people whose relevant sites were trumped by EMDs, but wasn’t so great for people who had legitimate sites built around a keyword or phrase.
Should you use them?
Yes, if you do it correctly...