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How to Choose a Good Domain Name

« Go Back | Posted in: Business Strategy - on August 21, 2015


In some situations choosing a good domain name is easy - you simply take the name of your business and buy the dot-com version of it. But what do you do if the dot-com isn't available? What do you do if you don't have a name for your blog or website yet? And what do you do if your business name is long with multiple words?
 
But before we help you overcome these problems and choose a solid domain name, we’ll need to discuss the domain name extension. It is the group of letters at the end of a domain - for example, ".com".
Lots of different domain name extensions exist in addition to dot-com: ".net" and ".org" are two of the most common but you can also get country specific domain name extensions like ".us" and ".co.uk". These are all legitimate domain name extensions, although the country specific domains can limit your reach to a particular country in search engine rankings. That said dot-com is still easily the most common type of domain name. This should also be considered if you are thinking of buying one of the new domain name extensions - ".buy", ".eat", or ".architect."
 
Most people will assume that your website is a dot-com domain, so always try to get it when you can.
 
How To Choose A Good Domain Name
 
Here are the five main things to consider when buying a new domain name:
 
  •     Make Sure It Is Unique - the last thing that you want is for users to confuse your website with your competitors, so make sure it is unique. For example, you might be able to register the domain "YourCityPlumbingServices.com", but it could be easily confused if one of your competitors is already using "YourCityPlumbers.com".
  •     Make It Memorable And Easy To Type - the ideal situation is that you get a domain name that’s memorable and that’s easily spell. It is not good if they ask how to spell it the first time the type it in. And it’s even worse if they ask how to spell it the second time. Easy to spell words that are simple are what you should aim for.

 

  •     The Shorter The Better - keep the name as short as possible. With dot-com domain names this has become difficult because so many are already registered. You might have to compromise - choose a dot-com with a longer name, or go for a different domain name extension so you can get a shorter name.
  •     Make It Relevant - if you look at the internet's biggest websites you might think that relevancy is not important. Google, eBay and Facebook are all made-up words, while Apple doesn't sell apples, and Amazon has nothing to do with rainforests. But remember those brands spend huge sums of money on marketing to become household names. For most SMBs, it is more important to get a relevant domain name rather than one that is quirky.
  •     Use Hyphens And Numbers Sparingly - avoid hyphens and numbers whenever possible. There are several reasons for this. Numbers can lead to confusion as to whether you mean "2" or "two". Similarly, hyphens are confusing as many people may forget them. Both numbers and hyphens are also often used by spammers, which is not a good association to have.
 
 
The final piece of advice is to take your time when selecting a domain name. In the modern world they have become one of the most important parts of your brand, so it is crucial you choose a good domain name.

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