Your domain name is an indispensable component of your website. It should be easy for people to remember and search for and find when they require your services. Here are 5 tips for choosing the right domain name.
1: Make Your Domain Unique
If there is already a well established website with a similar domain name, you should avoid it. Even if you outgrow the other business, there will always be the risk of confusing your customer base when they search for you. Avoid domain names that are plurals, misspellings or slightly differently written versions of pre existing sites. Flickr had a huge problem with this that lasted years. People would tell their friends to look at their photo’s on Flickr, but due to the sounding like flicker they were sent to flicker.com, an unrelated website.
2: Consider Your Business Type & Aims
The majority of sites on the web are .com domains. However this might not be the most suitable TLD for your business. If you run a non for profit organisation you gain credibility by ending your domain in .org. Likewise if you are running a business in Ireland and you don’t deal with people outside of the country, .ie is a stronger TLD.
3: Keep It Short
Making your domain name easy to remember and easy to type is crucial. If people can’t remember how to find you they will quickly move on to the next site that can give them what they are looking for. The easier something is to remember and type, the more likely a user is to type it. For example if I was looking to buy a new hat I would be a lot more likely to type in www.hats.ie than www.supercoolawesomemegahatworld.com. Never underestimate how a few extra letters can negatively impact your SEO down the line.
Hyphens within your domain name are hard for users to remember and make life difficult when you are verbally directing people to your site. Making your site easy to remember and find means cutting out hyphens in the domain.
5: Don’t Choose An Exact Match Domain
Exact match domains are when you choose a domain based solely on the keyword you are trying to rank for. For example if you were trying to rank for the keywords cheap, iphones and cork your exact match domain might look like www.cheapiphonescork.ie. This looks like it works on paper, however in 2012 Google noticed the trend for keyword stuffing in domain names and released the exact match domain update. The update knocked EMD’s down the rankings and left web site owners reeling.
When selecting your domain name it’s best to go with the name of your company. The name shouldn’t be easily confused with other domains, contain hyphens, or be an exact match domain. It should reflect where you operate and your business type, be as short as reasonably possible and be easy to spell and remember. If you are creating a new business, keep this in mind when you are naming it. An company name that follows these rules will work well as a domain name.
Domain names are correlated with your SEO, if you are wondering why you aren’t higher in search rankings book your SEO audit online now.