I call it the “Domain Game.” Now days it can be almost impossible to select a domain name for your business’s website. When I get a project, many times the client will give me a list of ten or more possible domain names, and I have to respectfully suggest that they make me another list of ten after I have explained to them my tips for selecting a good domain name. Many times they are too long, too hard to spell, or just too generic. Another big issue these days is the buying up of domain names. Many times you cannot even get your company’s name, because they have been bought up by people to sell the domain later at a higher price. An example of this is a very famous TV anchor in my home country wanted to start blogging; however, when he went to purchase his own named domain, it was already taken! So sometimes, you have to get creative or remember to buy early. Below is my list of 8 tips to help you with domain names. Enjoy!
Short and Sweet
It is important to keep your domain name simple, short, and sweet! There is no need for a long domain name that is difficult to pronounce, spell, or remember. If your domain name is short, it will resonate better with viewers and consumers, and they are more likely to remember it and visit it. Moreover, try to use a version of a word that is more memorable. For example, instead of using “physicians” in a domain name, use “doctors” or even “docs.” This will help people remember you name, and will ultimately help you business out!
Stick to the Com
Unless you need to buy .net, .mobi, .org, or any other type of domain, always try to buy a .com version of your domain. A .com domain will be more successful only for the sheer popularity of .com itself. Moreover, people are more likely to remember a .com domain over any other domain name. However, if the domain name you are set on is taken as a .com, you may be forced to purchase another type of domain.
Remember to always register for your domain early. This is important because people are starting to purchase domain names only to sell them at a higher price later. So, I recommend buying a domain name as soon as you put together a business, even if you are not considering a web page in the near future. This will assure that you can get the best possible domain name for your business, when you do want to create a web page.
Buy Multiple Domains
I suggest trying to purchase as many domain names as possible that are close to your main domain in order to take advantage of misspellings, people trying to take advantage or your success, and to increase placing on search engines.
Use your Brand Name
Try to incorporate your brand name into your domain name when possible, in order to increase marketing for your product or business. For example, if your business is “Louisiana Steel Company,” to use Louisianasteel.com, Lasteelcompany.com, or a variation of the brand name, in order to allow potential clients to know what your business is about, and to use your site for marketing your business.
Consider a Hyphen
If you are having a hard time getting your domain name, consider placing a hyphen. Hyphens have their pros and cons. One thing great about hyphens is that search engines tend to place sites with hyphens in the names higher because they are able to read the words more easily. Also, it is a great way to be able to use the exact domain name you have been dreaming of, if it has already been taken. For example, if you name is Jason, and you want to name your site jasondesignblog.com, but it has been taken, consider using Jason-design-blog.com, in order to use the name you wanted and not have to change anything.
When it comes to domain names, do not always think of the obvious. For example, I had a client who wanted to name their site, the name of the city, plus doctors at the end; however, the desired name was already taken. To be creative I suggested adding “my,” “your,” “the” etc in front of the site name, and all of those were available. So, do not get frustrated, just try to be a little flexible and creative and the right name will surface. Moreover, when I say be creative, I mean utilize web 2.0 ideals such as making a short, catchy website name that is unique, so it is easy to remember. Examples of web 2.0 names are google.com, yahoo.com, facebook.com, myspace.com, and twitter.com. So try to make your own web 2.0 name for your page, and I am aure that it will be successful!
Watch the Wording
This tip is important, and it incorporates a lot of different tips into one. When I say watch your wording, I mean to watch the word selection to make sure that people can spell your domain name, to make sure people know what the word means, and to make sure you have a word in the domain name that describes your site. The spelling sounds like a silly tip, but you would be surprise how many words are commonly misspelled. When you are going to select your domain name, make sure it does not contain a word that is difficult to spell, or people are surely not going to be visiting your site. Next, do not use a name in your domain that is not understandable by your viewers, and make sure that you have a word or words that describes what type of business you are in, so clients can have an idea of what your site will contain, and search engines will place you site in the appropriate searches.
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