- November 1, 2017
- Posted by: matious
- Category: Uncategorized
Having the right domain name is essential because our domain name is how your visitors find your website. It appears on your print materials, and it’s also shared both online and offline as your brand recognition increases. A poorly chosen domain name will have a widespread negative impact on your online and offline efforts. A good domain name is relevant, memorable, and usable, so let’s talk about what we mean by relevant. Your domain name should be relevant to your business, typically it’ll be your business name, but in some situations, it can be a little different. If your business name is too long, you may need to creatively shorten it while still remaining on brand. For example, if our business name is “Santa Barbara Golf Course”, we might choose the domain name “SBGolf.com”. The name would be great for our marketing efforts and to achieve memorability, but we might gain more SEO value out of using a keyword rich domain like “SantaBarbaraGolf.com”. In that situation, we should ideally buy both and simply redirect “SBgolf.com” to “SantaBarbaraGolf.com”, and then, build all of my SEO efforts around the longer domain. You’re really only using the short domain when you’re displaying it in your marketing materials. Now we are not suggesting that you should buy a bunch of domains and redirect them to capture keywords; that’s actually not going to help your SEO. You have to put all of your effort behind the domain name you want to rank, so just owning them, and pointing them places, won’t add value. On the other side, if your business is called Brad’s Automotive, you could buy the domain bradsAuto.com, but SantaBarbaraAuto.com wouldn’t be relevant despite your desire to gain that keyword advantage. The more relevant your domain name, the better, even for SEO. So stick with what makes sense to your target market.
Next, make it memorable, and you’ll do that by keeping it short, using simple terms, and by selecting the most common suffix. When we are talking about suffixes, we are referring to “.com”, “.net”, “.org”, and today “.com” is still King, and most people instinctually type “.com” even if you listed “.net” or “.org”. It’s ideal to always have “.com”, so if you choose for example “SBgolf.net”, your competitor might be at “SBgolf.com”, and you’ll be helping drive traffic to their site when your visitor can’t remember the right suffix. Now some countries have specific suffixes such as “.mx” or “.co.uk”, so use the one that is most widespread in your region. If you have a difficulty to spell or pronounce a business name, you’ll end up with a less than memorable domain name. Instead, you’ll want to try an alternative domain name that still maintains the feel of your brand. Finally, the domain should be usable. If you’re adding in hyphens or leveraging prefixes other than “www”, you might be hampering of visitors ability to arrive at your website. The best domain names are short and free of special characters, so after you select your domain name, we recommend buying multiple variations and suffixes to prevent others from registering them. Also, if you’re using a number in your domain, it’s not a bad idea to buy the version with the number spelled out to avoid any complications when sharing a domain name through word-of-mouth. If your domain name is unavailable, it might be worth contacting the current owner to inquire about the cost of purchasing it. If you can’t find their contact information on their website, you can try identifying them by running what’s called a “WHOIS”, this will query the registered owner. You’ll find the tools to do this at “whois.net”, or “who.is”. It’s hard to change a domain name once you’ve got your marketing underway, so evaluate your options and make the best choice for your business.