Choosing A Domain Name

Choosing a domain name.

Written by: Maria Horan

Topic: Strategy

Make a great first impression

You want your domain name (your website name) to reflect what it is you actually do and needs to be unique to you. Your domain name needs to closely match what your business does, as this is what people will search for. Using the same name as your company name will help people find you when searching online and

A Name to Remember

If someone wants to look up your domain name, it’s really helpful to have a memorable title for them to check out. You want your name to be easy to remember, to pronounce and to type. Keep it short and avoid numbers and hyphens as these can cause confusion. The right word or words can make for success and is a great opportunity for branding your business.

Word Search

A unique name will help you stand out from the crowd, be more memorable and help establish your brand. Play around with some words and jot down ideas. Take a look at a Thesaurus for some inspiration. If this doesn’t create ideas, use a domain name generator, such as wordoid.com. And make sure that your domain name doesn’t spell something obscene. You can use wordsafety.com to check yours is swearword-free in 19 different languages.

Future-proofing

The name you choose needs to stand the test of time. Avoid numbers (for example, 2020) as you will have to update this every year and this will damage your SEO. You need a name that you will love, as changing your domain name is time-consuming, unnecessary stress and will damage your SEO. You want a name that you love and won’t easily tire of. Think of your business’s future and ensure that your name will still be suitable in five, ten years’ time.

Top Level Domain (TLD)

There is a strong consensus that ‘.com’ is the best extension to have but it really depends on where your market is based. If you’re in Britain, a local or national extension may be better, such as ‘co.uk’ which will be favoured by Google UK. If you are trading overseas in various countries, ‘.com’ is probably best but you may need to purchase other various extensions to capture customers in all your possible locations.

Check it out

It’s really important that you check your wished-for domain name isn’t already being used by another company or as a trademark. Take a look at knowem.com to see if your chosen name is already being used as a domain, social network or a trademark. And consider trademarking your own business name at a later stage, which will further strengthen your own brand name and prevent copyright issues in the future.

Buy the variants

If you have decided to operate under the “.com” version of your domain name, you should also buy the variants of this, such as “co.uk” and “.uk” if you are trading in the UK, for example. Buying the other versions of your domain names ensures that competitors can’t get hold of them and profit from clients looking for your company. Some people also buy misspellings of their domain name to ensure that these searches are also redirected. You can permanently redirect all variants to your main domain.

Takeaways:

Choose a memorable and catchy name you like and make sure you own the various versions online.