Google Warns of Exact Match Domain Algorithm Change
As you can see from screenshot, Matt Cutts, head of Google's Webspam team announced a major algorithm change designed to reduce the rankings of low quality exact match domain sites. Cutts also tweeted, “New exact-match domain (EMD) algo affects 0.6% of English-US queries to a noticeable degree. Unrelated to Panda/Penguin.”
While I'm not surprised at the announcement, I'm surprised that it took this long, they have been hinting about this for some time now and its been a noticeable and tempting SEO tactic.
This may not have been noticeable to regular users but every now and again, I would search for a competitive organic term and the usual set of suspects would be in the top 10, Wikipedia ect. Then you'll see a site, with the exact match domain, a few articles and a few links ranking in the top 10, other than the exact match domain, the site had no other business being there.
I sometimes worked this into a clients SEO strategy buy purchasing exact match domains for mid difficulty terms, sometimes it was successful, sometimes not, but it didn't take a lot of resources so it was always worth trying. It will be interesting to see if this tactic still works going forward.