The choice of domain is a fundamental part of any website. A good domain name can help you branding and SEO rankings.
It’s getting harder every day to find an original domain name, but with a little patience and imagination, you’ll find the ideal domain name. Here are some tips to keep in mind when choosing a domain name:
1. Choose an easy domain to write, verbalize or spell. Think about whether you could easily give your domain name to someone over the phone. If so, it is a good domain.
2. Choose a domain as short as possible. Nowadays, there are hardly any 1, 2, or 3-letter domain names, but in general, you want to avoid domain names in excess of 20 characters.
3. If you can, buy a domain with seniority. The search engines give more value to “aged domains” so your website will have a better chance at ranking high in search engine results early on.
4. Choose a domain name that has something to do with your brand, industry, occupation, profession etc…If your company or startup already has a brand or original name, use this name for the domain and for the site in general, otherwise it could disorient your users.
5. Avoid middle (-) and low (_) hyphens. Many people do not know or confuse them and could lead to errors, causing so you to lose visits and potential customers.
6. Also avoid numbers in the domain if possible, unless of course your brand name contains numbers. Numbers can lead to confusion amongst customers. For example, a potential customer could confuse “twotimers.com” with “2timers.com.”
7. Register your domain as soon as possible. Register it as soon as possible to avoid someone from beating you to the punch and “stealing it.” After all, most domains usually cost less than $10, it is better not to use it than not to have it.
8. Choose “.com ” extension as the first option. Your page will be well positioned around the world and .com is the easiest to remember.
9. However, if the “.com” extension is taken, and your business is going to focus solely on your country, you can also use the generic extension for your country. For example, “.us” for USA, .mx for Mexico etc…
10. If possible, register all possible options (.com, .es, .net, .org), thus avoiding competition with your same name.
11. You can also register the plural or the singular of your domain name, as well as the feminine and the masculine, if possible.
12. It is preferable that you host your in the same country as your potential customers, particularly for ideal positioning in that country.
13. When you register your domain name, make sure the registration is made in your name or company name to avoid future legal problems.
14. Sanity test your domain name. Before registering your new domain, ask other people’s opinions. Sometimes, what seems like a great idea for a name to you seems ridiculous to others. Consider other points of view.
15. Avoid capitalization. Register your domain name in lowercase, as everyone does, otherwise you will confuse your customers and it will be harder to remember.
16. Avoid acronyms and abbreviations. Although they have meaning for you, they may not mean anything to potential customers.
17. If you operate internationally, check that your domain has no other potentially offensive meaning in another language.
18. Do not use trademarks or names of other companies for your domain to take advantage of your clientele, even if the domain is free and available. In the long run it will bring you problems and also you will never enjoy your own identity. Try to be unique.
19. Do not constantly change domain, all the positioning and brand image you have achieved will go to waste.
20. Do not lose it! Stay tuned for its expiration date and be sure to renew it well in advance. There are people who snatch up domains the second they become available, and you don’t want that to happen to you if you’ve spent a good amount of time and effort building up your brand and domain name.
21. Matter of fact, it’s best if you register your domain name for a long period of time. Not only will you not lose it, but the search engines will understand that your project is stable and this will also help you in positioning.
Keep these tips in mind and you’ll be well on your way to a successful online business.