Nomen est omen. Even the ancient Romans knew about the power of a well-chosen name. In the world of contemporary marketing, it’s essential to stand out if you want to be noticed. A Domain name is your signboard; so, it has to be catchy and creative. However, the qualities of being captivating and memorable aren’t the only important ingredients of a good domain name.
Some technical details such as search engine results, click-through rates, offline advertising, or type-in traffic can make a huge difference; so, you need to take all of them into consideration.
Brevity Is a Virtue
When it comes to deciding on your domain name, the golden rule is to keep it short. Simple names are easier to remember, but make sure to come up with something that’s not difficult to pronounce and spell. Remember that people are prone to making typos, and you don’t want to send your potential visitors or customers to some other website. Using hyphens is a big no-no for the very same reason.
Don’t do some other businesses a favor by sporadically providing them with qualified leads. Also, think the other way round by researching a domain name that you like. In case that your competition has a similar domain name, go for something else. Not only will you avoid any potential confusion, but you’ll also be on the safe side regarding trademark infringement.
Unique and Brandable
Grab a thesaurus and find a snappy word or phrase that can channel the values of your brand. If you can’t find something that fits, be creative and make it up. Sony, IKEA, Google, or Kodak are perfect examples that illustrate uniqueness and brandability. Oh, yes, and none of them had a meaning at the time when they were created. Sometimes it’s not necessary to use a domain name that will be descriptive of your business; so, think big and broad.
If you’re not willing to make such bold moves, you can simply try and blend two words into one, just like Instagram or YouTube. Finally, you can take advantage of domain name generators, which are useful tools that can help you with this tricky task.
As for domain name extensions, .com still rules the internet. Statistics say that .com is the most popular TLD extension with 75% of all the websites in the U.S. using it. Therefore, it’s easy to guess that all short and catchy domains with this extension have already been taken. What now? Well, you can opt for its runners-up, .net or .org. However, some marketers say that it’s much better to choose a longer domain name on .com than to resort to a shorter one on .net. You should bear this in mind if you want to go for small niche websites and fast rankings.
Non-profit organizations are usually associated with .org extension and that’s the only issue with it. In terms of trust and credibility, all those three domain extensions are reliable. In order to protect your brand, it’s advisable to purchase a domain name together with all the available extensions.
The Key Is in Keywords
SEO can be useful for domain names, but you need to be very careful about that. It would be a good idea to use Google Keyword Planner, do research on top keywords in your niche, and try to incorporate some of them in your domain name. If it’s possible, put the keyword at the beginning of your domain name because that will have a positive effect on your ranking. Of course, make sure to stay away from keyword stuffing or generic keywords as that can do more damage than not using them at all.
Before definitely choosing a domain name, you should check out whether the one you picked is available on social networks. Having the same name across all channels is excellent for brand building and awareness. That way, your customers will be able to find you on the internet and social media sites easily. If this research seems like a complex task, there are some handy tools that can search any potential domain name and check its availability across hundreds of social networks.
Measure twice, cut once. Stick to this old proverb when you’re making this big decision.