Which domain name is Ideal for your Business?
The domain name is not just the address of your new website. It is the online identity of your business. The name that your customers will recognize, trust, share and come back to again and again. To proudly represent you and your brand, your ideal domain name best be short, easily pronounceable and unique.
Keep it Short
Linguistic research reveals that names from 2 to 7 letters are easiest to remember. Plus, it’s less likely for users to misspell them and be directed to another company. If you choose a name for other advantages which, however, is easily mistyped, then it is a good idea to register the so called ‘typo domains’ as well to make sure you don’t lose on valuable customer traffic.
One-word domains are catchy, but hard to come by these days: there are over 326 million registered domains as of 2016.
Domains of two words such as webstage.com can work fine, but it’s best to stay clear of acronyms, hyphens and numbers. Acronyms are difficult to remember, numbers cause confusion, because when you pronounce them it’s not clear if they’re spelled out or written as a digit, and hyphenated domain names even more so: www.unlimited-rewards.com. Unless you have it written down, it’s easy to mistype it. A rule of thumb here is to make it short and memorable, easy to say and write. A case in point is pon.com.
Generic vs Brandable
There are pros to both. Many advise that your domain name should contain the most commonly searched keywords because that can improve your rankings, ie is good for Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and can increase your website traffic. While this is a valid consideration, you may lose the memorability factor. Plus, for Google, too many search keywords in the URL may indicate spam. Also, generic search terms are harder to stand out in the brain, eg womenfashion.com. On the other hand, the domain name may simply be the same as your brand name, if available, eg deloitte.com. If it’s not, it is best to look for something unique.
Expired Domain Names
Expired domain names are names that have been dropped by their owners so they can be registered again. High authority expired domains have high SEO value and can claim high prices, too. They have a definite advantage, though. Instead of registering a brand new domain name and spend a small fortune on pushing it up in search results, it may be a good option to check for a suitable expired name that already carries huge SEO power and can boost your search rankings from day one.
Global or Local Domains
Together with the domain name, you’ve got to choose the top-level domain extension/s (TLDs) as well depending on your marketing objectives and long-term business goals. There are three types of TLDs:
– generic (gTLDs) such as .com, .net, .co,
– country code (ccTLDs) such as .co.uk, .ca, .fr, .nl, etc. and
– topic specific generic (new TLDs) such as .business, .agency, .social, etc.
The .COM domains are most wide spread (over 125 million domain names) and therefore universal, but it is much harder to come up with a good .com domain name matching the criteria outlined above that is free to register (and not outrageously spammed already).
If your business is primarily local, you can go for your country’s ccTLD, thus specifically targeting that market. You can also register a few ccTLDs with your domain name if you plan to expand regionally, for example. If your business is city-specific, you can choose to add the city name in the domain name. If it is an agency, you can register it under .agency, though new gTLDs are still gaining popularity. If you cannot get any gTLD with your preferred domain name, it is a good bet to try popular ccTLDs such as .co.uk, .ca or .de.
Potential Trademark Problems
Trademark infringements are definitely something to consider in advance. When choosing your domain name, make sure that it does not resemble existing trademarks in any way. If in doubt, it is best to seek legal advice since in potential disputes much depends on the particular jurisdiction. If you’d like to protect your own trademarked domain, consult with an attorney as well.
Make Sure you Love it
Ideally, your domain name will be yours for a long time. It is your online identity which will accumulate SEO rankings, website traffic and customer trust for your business.
Be sure it’s ‘the One’ from the start!
If you’d like to learn the basics before buying your new domain, please visit <What you should know before Registering your Domain.>