Choosing the Right Domain Name

Date: May 20, 2020 | Categories: ,

Choosing the right domain name is a critical step in setting up a new business. Your domain name is your address online. Not only will your customers find you at this address, search engines will also find you here. It is important to choose wisely when picking a domain name.

What’s in a name?

A good place to start when choosing a domain is with your business name. If your business name does not contain keywords, consider adding them when you create a domain name. Keywords can be very helpful if your business is very specific. If you have a bakery and your business name is “Sarah’s Sweets”, you don’t want to add the keyword “cupcakes” to your domain unless you only make cupcakes.

Sometimes, it is wise to look outside your business name for your website. Maybe you have a hyper-local business and want to use your location and the service your provide (ei: ‘newyorkplumbing.com‘). Just make sure that your domain is unique, memorable, and specific to your business or service offering.

If you are feeling stuck on choosing a domain name, try a thesaurus, a domain name generator for some ideas, or reach out to a web design professional for advice. It doesn’t hurt to ask friends and family for their input as well.

Choose your TLD

Choose your top level domain, or TLD. There are many TLDs available but ‘.com’ is certainly the easiest for your customers to remember (and most trusted). It is also usually cheaper than “fancy” TLDs like ‘.life’, or ‘.me’. Even if you settle on ‘.com’ for your primary domain name, it maybe be wise to buy the ‘.net’, ‘.co’, or another fitting TLD for your brand. It’s very easy to set up a forward from these other domains to your primary domain.

Note: Sometimes you’ll have trouble using an email address with “fancy” TLDs like ‘.life’. Many online form systems just don’t accept email addresses with uncommon endings. 

Size matters

Consider length when choosing a domain name. It is difficult to remember a long domain name. It’s also difficult (and bothersome) for some people to type a long domain name. The old adage “Keep It Simple Stupid (KISS)” applies here.

While we’re on the topic of ease-of-use, don’t choose words that are difficult to spell. Lots of letters repeated in a row can also increase the odds of typos.

Note: If your brand is frequently misspelled, it might be wise to buy the misspelled versions of the URL as well!

Do a background check

It is also a good idea to check the domain history prior to purchasing a domain. You don’t want to own a domain name for a business that could have been used for harm in the past. Doing so could hurt your ability to rank in search.

Secure the perfect domain name

Once you’ve found the perfect domain name, buy it! It is important to act quickly, especially in a competitive market. Get that domain name before someone else takes it. GoDaddy is a very popular and easy to use domain registrar. They make it easy to transfer domains, too, should that be necessary in the future. Transferring non-GoDaddy domains is possible, but it requires a few more steps.

Domain name next steps

Once you have your domain, you can begin to think about other aspects of your business’ online presence. It is smart to register your social media handles as soon as you’ve landed on a domain name. This way, you can reserve the name you truly want and minimize the risk that someone will snatch it out from under you.

It’s also time to start thinking about a website design, email, business cards, and more!

If you need help with deciding on your domain name contact us and we can provide assistance in helping you decide and register your domain name!

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