A keyword in a domain name is not an SEO advantage

Google has once again insisted that having a keyword in a domain name is not an advantage. This ties in with my recent ramblings on the increasing importance of a brand name instead. Search Engine Journal reports in Google on Ranking Power of Keyword Domains that keyword domains do not naturally rank faster than branded domains, and do not naturally rank more highly. This, they say, has been the case for many years.

So how do we account for examples people have given of domains such as bluewidgetcompany.co.uk apparently doing better than bwc-manufacturing.co.uk, the market leader in Blue Widgets? The author of the article suggests it may be because people may be more likely to click on a link with the keyword in the domain, which may have a general traffic advantage, but the only algorithmic SEO one would be that resulting from the higher clickthrough rate. The argument that the keyword itself generates an SEO advantage does not appear to be true.