“Who cares about my domain name. As long as my website has the right keywords people will find me. It doesn’t matter if my domain name is Timbuctoo.org, or whatdoIcare.net. I just need a web presence.”
That’s one way to look at it. And it might just work for you. But the fact of the matter is that choosing your domain name is as important as choosing your company name. A good domain name increases the ease in memorizing a given site name, and this in turn means more visitors.
So lets go through three tips that will help you choose your domain name wisely.
Tip 1: Brand your domain name
Your domain name should be in sync with your website goals. For e.g. the primary goal of my website is to create a stress-free website for my clients. So I chose StressLessWeb.com as my domain name.
Let’s imagine you have a small flower shop. And your unique selling point is that you guarantee your customers, that your flowers will not wilt the very next day. What would work better, a generic name like ‘flowers.com’ or ‘flowershop.com’? Or a domain name like ‘NoWiltFlowerShop.com’? Which one would immediately identify your business and make it unique? ‘NoWiltFlowerShop.com’ – Right? Your customers would always remember you as ‘NoWiltFlowerShop.com’.
The best domain names are those that represent you or the services that you provide. That’s the kind of brand domain you should create.
Before you register that perfect domain name make sure you run it by other people to see how it sounds. You don’t want to make that classic mistake of ‘Therapist Finder’, who used ‘therapistfinder.com’ as their domain name.
But how long can your domain name be? Let’s find out.
Tip 2: The long and the short and lot more..
Length of the domain name
Domain names can be pretty long up to 67 characters. But that does not mean you should have a domain that is as long as possible. Remember:
- your visitors need to remember your domain name
- your visitors need to type in your name
So a shorter domain will work much better.
What about Hyphenation?
When thinking of using hyphens in your domain name consider:
- that people claim, search engines find it easier to distinguish domain name keywords better when you use hyphens. But keep in mind search engines are getting better and smarter at deciphering keywords in non-hyphenated names, so it’s not necessary to use hyphens
- your website visitor might find it tiresome or make mistakes when typing a domain name with hyphens
- check out the non-hyphenated website of the domain name. Make sure it is not a competitor. If it is, you need to be aware that people may go to the non-hyphenated website inadvertently.
“The”, “My” and Plurals
Very often when looking for a domain name, the domain registrar will suggest alternative forms of the name. For e.g. if you wanted ‘website.com’, you might gets suggestions like:
If you intend to use ‘thewebsite.com’ make sure you promote your website in the same way. So if your domain name is ‘TheNoWiltFlowerShop.com’ make sure, it’s also the name on your website. And on all your marketing material. So that your visitors and customers never forget that your website is ‘TheNoWiltFlowerShop’ and not ‘NoWiltFlowerShop’.
When it comes to plurals, the chances of a visitor making a mistake is very great. Many a time, I have mistakenly ordered things online from the wrong site. All because I forgot to add the ‘s’. So avoid plurals.
Now let’s look at extensions of domain names.
Tip 3: com, net or org which extension is the right one?
This is a common question. Many times the ‘.com’ is taken and the only domain available is the ‘.net’ or a country specific domain like ‘.au’.
There is no straightforward answer to making the right choice. If your business caters to just the local community like a spa. It makes sense to get a country specific domain. You will actually benefit from it. Search engines are country specific and you will probably rate better in the search engine results. Also local visitors will immediately identify with you.
But if you are under the impression that only ‘.com’ will work for you. Understand that ‘.net’ and ‘.org’ are widely accepted and are the most popular extensions after ‘.com’. You just need to:
- check out the competition with the same name and understand what you are up against
- promote the full name with the extension. Especially when the extension is not ‘.com’. So always promote ‘myperfectdomain.net’ and never just ‘myperfectdomain’
Your domain name is your brand. It defines your uniqueness. Whatever name and extension you choose make sure you promote the complete domain name.
Before you register that perfect domain name make sure you run it by other people to see how it sounds.
There are many domain registrars out there. Don’t fret if you have concerns in choosing a domain registrar.
You should care about your domain brand and now you have 3 tips to help you make a wise choice.
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