Choosing the right domain name is an essential step in establishing your brand. Your domain name is the first thing visitors see, and it can affect their impression of your business. An excellent domain name can increase the users’ interest, while a carelessly chosen one can drive visitors away. This is why it is crucial to choose the best domain name from the start.
We understand that choosing a catchy domain name can be challenging, especially if you are just starting out. This is why we are breaking down how to come up with catchy domain names.
What is a Domain Name?
A domain name is a string of text that maps to a numeric IP address used to access your website. In other words, it is the text that users type into a browser to reach a particular website. Domain registries manage domain names. You must register with a domain name registrar when creating a domain name.
Domain names include two or three parts, each separated by a dot. When read from right to left, it identifies names from the most general to specific ones. The section on the right is the top-level domain (TLD). These includes general TLDs like .com, .net, .org, and country-specific TLDs like .uk, and .jp.
To the left of the TLD is the second-level domain (2LD), and if you have anything to the left of the 2LD, it will be the third-level domain (3LD). Let’s look at google.com as an example.
.com is the TLD, while google is the 2TLD.
However, for Google UK’s domain name, google.co.uk, .com is the TLD, .co is the 2LD, and google the 3LD. In this case, the 2LD indicates the type of organisation that registered the domain.
Once you have registered the domain name, your registrar will notify you when the domain name is about to expire and allow you to renew. Ensure you choose a trusted domain registrar since some may purchase your expired domain name and sell it back to you at an exorbitant price.
What are the Benefits of a Domain Name for Your Business?
Here are some reasons why domain names are important:
A domain name makes your business look professional. If you publish your website through a free web-hosting site, you will have a URL like www.yourisp.com/yourcompany. Such addresses do not instil confidence in your customers like a www.yourcompany.com address does. Since customers look for reputable websites on the internet, you want to prove that they can trust your website.
Adds Mobility to Your Web Presence
If you decide to change your website host, you can carry your domain name with you. If you do not own a domain name, you will take a new URL, harming the branding and search engine ranking you built with your first address.
Attract Walk-in Business
Registering a domain name that matches the concept of your business will draw web users in search of that topic. Let’s say you are a plumber; registering your website as Plumbing.com will get visitors looking for plumbing services.
Helps Build Your Brand
A domain name will also increase awareness of your brand. If you match your domain name with your company name, it reinforces your brand. This makes it easier for customers to remember and return. It will also make it easier for your customers to pass your name along to their friends. An excellent domain name will go a long way towards generating traffic and building you a reputation.
How to Choose the Perfect Domain Name
Here are some simple steps to help you pick the best domain name for your website.
Stick with .com
You will find several new domain name extensions like .pizza, .blog, and even .photography. However, experts recommend choosing a .com domain name. We know using the new domain name extensions can be tempting, but .com is the most credible and already established one. New domain name extensions will make your website look less trustworthy. Another advantage is that .com domain name extensions are the most memorable, and most people will unconsciously type .com at the end of every domain. Some smartphone keyboards also have an automatic .com button.
Use Keywords in Your Domain Name Search
Using keywords in your domain tells search engines and users what your website is about. Combined with other SEO strategies, keywords in your domain can help you rank highly on search engines. However, you must be creative since finding an available domain name with your targeted keyword is challenging.
Keep the Domain Name Short
Never go overboard with the domain length. Always keep your domain length short and memorable because longer domains are complex for your audience to remember. Also, longer domains are prone to typos when users are entering them in the search box. This can lead to loss of traffic, or your users may deem you untrustworthy. Keep the length below 15 characters.
Make Your Domain Easy to Pronounce and Spell
Users should be able to share your domain name when speaking and writing. Making your domain easy to pronounce and spell may also come in handy when creating a professional business email.
Keep it Unique
If you want your readers to remember your domain name quickly, make it unique. Research other blogs in your niche and identify the domain names they are using. This will help you to avoid accidentally using a trademark name or getting accused of copying others. You may also want to choose a more brandable domain name since they are catchy and unique.
Hyphens are a sign of spam, and you do not want to be associated with spammy domains. Adding hyphens to your domain also puts it at risk of typos.
Leave Room to Expand
Always choose a domain name that is related to your niche because it gives room for expansion. Let your domain name give a general idea of what the website is about to avoid limiting your long-term options. Moving your website to a new domain after expanding your business can be frustrating since you will lose search engine rankings. This is why it is essential to pick a flexible domain name.
Before settling on a domain name, do ample research and find out if the name is registered. Perform a trademark search to see if there is an exact name already trademarked. Google Search is also another way to check the availability of the name on top social media websites. A matching name will not only confuse but could also have legal implications.
Use Domain Name Generators
Manually searching for a domain name can be time consuming and tiresome. Domain name generators are free tools to automatically search for your defined keywords to find domain name ideas.
Tools for Finding Domain Names
Here are some domain tools that will help you find, register, and manage your domain name.
This tool focuses on the domain search experience since it provides a fast and intuitive way to find the perfect domain name. If you find the right domain name, you will be provided with a list of registrars you can choose from to register the respective domain name. Besides the standard .com, .net, and .org domains, Domainr also allows you to find country code top-level domain extensions.
This is another simple search tool for checking domain name availability. However, Domaintyper provides extra services like the Web 2.0 Domain Name Generator that generates available names like sixtor.com and 6graph.com. You can register these names through links to various registrars. The tool also provides the DomainTyper iPhone application that allows iPhone users to check their domains on the go.
This tool has a different approach since it generates a list of available domains and Twitter names. Domain Pigeon displays the names in different colours depending on how many people have shown interest in that name. The darker the colour, the more popular the name.
You can use Namethis for domains and other general names. Instead of spending time in brainstorming sessions, you only need to describe a product, and the Namethis community will provide suggestions. The service cost is $99, which is distributed to the members who suggested the top three naming ideas.
This tool is designed for Mac applications. Rage Domainer manages and tracks domain names. The tool allows you to enter the domains you own and some extra information, or a website you wish to monitor. Rage Domainer also shows domain-related data like Page Rank, incoming links, bookmarks, and Digg stories to a particular domain. You can also sync renewal dates with iCal, Smart Groups and import the list. It is the most advanced domain management solution for Mac users.
With this guideline, you can now choose the perfect domain name for your website. However, remember to search for a minimum of three names in case the domain name you want is taken. If you need help, contact our Marketing Sweet team to assist you in this process.