When you are starting out with a new site, one of the trickiest but most important factors is the domain name. You need to choose something that speaks volumes about your site, is easy to remember, and is brandable enough to make your new business venture a success.
A domain name is so important because it provides a first impression about your company, but it also affects SEO. Using keywords in the domain name can affect rankings! (yeah, yeah, I know they say they don’t, but they do).
Here are five tips to choosing the perfect domain name…
1. Make it Easy to Type
The most popular websites in the world are easy to type because they are easy to spell. Think about it: Facebook, Google, Yahoo, etc… You don’t want people to misspell your domain name and end up on another website.
Ask 10 people to write down your new domain name without telling them how it is spelt. If they get it wrong, you need to simplify it. Also, you should keep it concise easy to remember.
2. Avoid Hyphens and Numbers
This is related to the above tip, as hyphens and numbers make domain names harder to type and harder to explain. Domain names should be smooth, which means you have no time for symbols.
Furthermore, it just looks less professional. The nicest, most professional domain names just stick to letters.
3. Think Long-Term
A domain name needs to be future proof. You can’t build a business on one domain name and then switch to another when you get bored of it or when you decide to expand. Therefore, you need to keep your long-term plans in mind when choosing your domain name.
If you choose a very niche domain name and then decide to expand your business into other areas, your domain name will no longer apply. It should not be limiting in this way, but it should still indicate what your brand is about currently.
4. Use Keywords
People definitely won’t know what your business is about unless you use keywords. This will help to improve your SEO and attract the right kind of audience. Place the keyword at the very start of the domain name for maximum impact.
Note, however, that you should avoid sounding too generic when you do this. Otherwise, you risk becoming mistaken for other brands in the same industry, and that will only do harm to your business.
5. Use the Right Extension
The ‘extension’ refers to the part of the domain that comes after the dot. There are plenty to choose from, and you may base your decision on whether the domain you have chosen is already taken with a different extension.
If you have started your site through wordpress or another tool, then the original domain name will be something like .wordpress.com. However, this does not come across as very professional, as it does not seem like a true business organisation’s site. As a result, it is best to change to something else.
75% of domain names end in .com.