6 top tips for choosing the right domain name for you.
You are finally starting your own business, or perhaps your existing business is now ready to go online: the first step is registering your domain name. You probably already have many great domain name ideas, but how do you choose the right one?
Let’s start by looking at some basic guidelines which your domain name ideas should follow:
- Potential customers need to be able to remember and spell your domain name!
Fancy, complicated and long domain names which imply multiple spellings or which include numbers and hyphens are a recipe for disaster. Visitors, and any potential customers who hear you say your domain name out loud, will not be certain how to spell it, if they can even remember it. Stick to short, catchy words, or a combination of words which are memorable. Perhaps your chosen domain name sparks an emotion, sound or visual sensation – this will definitely not be forgotten.
- Have a brainstorming session
To choose a great domain name, start by creating a pool of domain name ideas. Organize a brainstorming session with a friend or business partner, and start playing with relevant words. The words should describe your business or include the brand name or both. Again, think of impulse, action, mood, emotion or even memory.
- Don’t forget keywords
Think from a search engine optimization (SEO) angle, as using an important keyword can give you an advantage when it comes to search engines. For example, if your business is plumbing and your brand name is Power, a domain name “www.power.com” is fairly non descriptive and could be anything. If you choose “www.powerplumbers.com” it is immediately clear what your business is, and at the same time it makes a statement as to the quality of your services.
If you are in need of some external idea stimulations why not check out a business name/domain name generator? They usually ask you to enter a word or words which need to be included, then they play around with word combinations, prefixes and suffixes. The handy part is they simultaneously show you the availability of the registration. Some examples are: Shopify’s business name generator, Name Mesh and Name Boy.
- Consider your local market
If your business is local rather than online anywhere, anytime, then perhaps you should include the location you are targeting in your domain name for the same reasons as number 3 in our list. Domain name ideas around “power-plumbers-essex” make it easy to instantly know who you are and where you trade.
- Be original
Once you have come up with a shortlist of great domain name ideas, you must do your research, and do it thoroughly. There are serious consequences for using certain domain names. First of all your name needs to be original and not conflict with an existing business or brand name. You could lose customers who end up at your competitor’s website by accident, plus you might be infringing on intellectual property rights. It is also a huge disadvantage on search engines if there are businesses with similar names to yours as they are likely to push you to the bottom of the ranking list. If, however, your domain name is unique, you can register all of the social media accounts in the same name and hence create uniformity across all media platforms.
- Domain name extensions
Ideally your chosen domain name should be so original that all of the usual extensions like .com, .co.uk, .org etc are available and it is good practice to buy all of them! This way, when your business expands you already own the domains which others could try to use to compete with you at your own business name game. Also, if you expand into new countries, having a local extension for each one would be a great asset to have.