5 Tips for Choosing an Ideal Domain Name
When setting up a company or organization, there are several things you need to consider.
Your domain name is one of the major things that needs careful thought before making a decision.
Choosing a domain name can either make or mar your online presence and consequently, you must learn how to choose a domain name that is suitable for your business.
If you are currently at the crossroads as regards how to choose a domain name, here are the 5 tips for choosing an ideal domain name.
1. Always Consider Your Brand Name First
When you need help choosing a domain name, consider prioritizing your brand name first. For anyone setting up a new business, the perfect way to get the best out of your brand name and the domain name is to ensure the two names match. Matching your brand name with your domain name ensures that once a customer remembers your brand name, accessing your website becomes easy.
One of the best practices of choosing a domain name that matches your brand name is doing extensive research before picking a name. Also, be innovative when choosing a domain name. You may also consider if the name is available on social media sites.
On the other hand, if you are thinking to focus on local searches instead, then you may consider to include a local descriptor in your domain name as well, such as your city or state name.
2. Avoid Complex Domain Names
While complex names may look cool and different when used as domain names, they sometimes pose problems for people who may want to visit your website. Therefore, it is highly recommended for you to go for a simple domain name. Basically, avoid the use of slangs or words with several, confusing spellings, in other words avoid complex domain names.
A simple domain name better should have the following properties.
- Easy to type and spell
- Easy to remember
- Easy to pronounce
- Short and catchy
- Sounds trustworthy
3. Avoid Using Hyphens and Numbers
One of the known best practices of choosing a domain name is avoiding hyphens and numbers. Hyphens are sometimes regarded as one of the major indicators of spam domains; hence, your website could be seen as a spam. This may undoubtedly affect the search engine ranking of your website and give your visitors a bad impression about your business. Furthermore, hyphens are often omitted by many potential visitors. And this will lead your potential visitors to another website, possibly the website of your competitor.
Numbers on the other hand may be confusing for the people as someone hear your domain name would not be able to know whether you are using a numeric value (for instance “1”) or the spelled value (for instance “one”) within your domain name.
4. Choose the Right TLD, .com If Available
Latest researches in May, 2019 show that .com is the most used top-level domain (TLD) by 46.7% of all the websites all around the web. Although there are no restrictions in using any of the several domain name extensions available, choosing .com as your domain’s TLD makes it easy for customers to find your website. Apart from being the most commonly used domain name extension in the world, .com offers unrivaled credibility. In many cases, many internet users find it easy to type .com when accessing a website than other domain name extensions.
Of course there may be some cases where .com is not available, then you may go with .net and .org extensions instead or maybe you may add prefixes to your domain idea to claim the .com extension.
On the other hand, if you are targeting a specific country, then you may consider using country code top-level domains (such as .ru, .de, .uk) that helps search engines to geotarget the website.
Finally, it should be also noted that, according to Google Webmaster Blog, every TLD is evaluated in the same way as the others, in other words, not any TLD has any advantage or disadvantage in search rankings.
5. Always Check the Domain History Before Registering It
Let’s say, you are on the verge of registering your domain. You’ve already found your ideal domain name, you’ve already checked its WHOIS records and seen that domain is available to register. DO NOT rush to register it, always remember to check the domain history first.
Sometimes, people may register and then gave up using domains. That’s why you should better investigate the domain’s history because of this as their purpose of using those domain names would used to be for gambling or adult stuff which may blacklist those domains in the eyes of the search engines and may make things harder for you when you launch your website.
To check the domain’s history, you may use a tool like Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine which shows you the history of the websites. You may also check whether the search engines has indexed the domain before or not with a simple search query; to do that in Google for instance, just type in site:domain.com and search.
Burak Özdemir is a web developer from Turkey, currently working on his instant domain name and social media username availability checker project, Turbo Domain Search.