How to choose a domain name
Choosing a domain name can be a daunting task, should you go keyword hunting or is it better to use or invent your brand?. Here are some tips and tools to easy your task.
Things to consider when choosing a domain name
You are in front of your computer, the website of your registrar is open and you are ready to choose a domain name for your website, but somehow the simple task of picking a name is suddenly not so easy at all, to make things worst when it seems you finally got yourself a very nice domain name…the darn thing is not available anymore!. Welcome to the game 🙂
There are things that you can do to easy your task of choosing a domain name, but remember: common sense is your best friend, not that guy pretending to be a SEO guru that is forcing you to pick that ugly and ridiculous name so that maybe your site will rank better in some search engines.
When choosing a domain name:
Keep it simple – I know you want to use a descriptive and long name that almost sell itself, but have some mercy on your customers, we have a tendency to remember short and simple names.
Relevant – This is important, a relevant name to your business or whatever thing you plan to do on your website will help people to remember your site and depending on your content it may also help with your authority.
Copyright – Avoid using registered names or brands, names of celebrities and so on. When in doubt go to www.copyright.gov and check the name you are planning to use just in case.
Avoid numbers and hyphens – This is not a golden rule, sometimes a hyphen is a good thing, sometimes a number is an integral part of your brand. However most of the time they aren’t a good thing to have, this has nothing to do with SEO or search engine optimization and all that c.. Numbers have a tendency to create confusion, think about when you say to someone: “go visit hostingfornoobs.com, it’s a great site”, will that person type in his browser hosting4noobs.com or hostingfornoobs.com?. How many times you think an user will type the address before giving up?. And then you have another good reason: nowadays more and more people are using cell phones, tablets and all kind of small gadgets to surf the web, are you going to make it easy for them to type your domain name or will you rather go fancy with something like: iamthefancy1-4real.com
TLD – you already know what a top level domain name is, if possible go with one. The preferred one is .com but depending on your business other are also useful and in some cases even better: you should go with a .org if you are a non profit organization or for ccTLD if your business it’s mainly a local thing.
Brand – You see, these days we have more SEO gurus than fishes in the water, everybody seems to know the perfect formula to better rank on search engines. Heck, Santa is sitting on my right laughing his beard off and he is not even wearing red… It’s good to plan ahead, it’s good to put some effort into choosing the right domain name, it is also good to try and make that domain name relevant and is not a bad thing to go keyword hunting if you are into that, or you are trying to learn and do like to experiment. Your brand is above all that, no keyword research and no SEO strategy will ever beat a good brand or even a well established bad one!. My point is, if you already have a small local business and are just trying to create a website for it: go by the name that you already have, if you are thinking about a catchy name but unrelated to what your website will serve, go for it anyway!. It is the content that you serve, the quality of your products, the care that you put into your customers what really matter in the long run and what will really last.
Ranking quickly on some search engines and then disappear as fast is not what you want. A search engine is a tool for you to attract people to your website and nothing more, your purpose is not to rank here or there, is to offer Quality..do that and people will follow.