On the Internet, your domain name is your actual identity. It’s the way in which people can find you and the primary name that clients relay to one another. Simply put, there’s nothing more important. It’s the one key aspect of your presence online that truly matters overall. Here are 10 general guidelines to follow to make sure you choose the best domain name for your purposes. Keep in mind that while these are not actual rules, it’s strongly suggested that you follow them to ensure optimal results.
1. Only Use .com
The top-level domain (TLD) .com is by far the most popular and accepted domain name extension. And, it’s easy to remember as well. When you direct someone to your website, typically they’re thinking in their mind “name-business name.com”. Therefore, it’s best to register a .com name if possible.
2. Consider Registering Other Extensions
As you perform your search for domain names and find the perfect one that ends in .com, it’s also a good idea to register other extensions as well such as .org, .net, .us, .info, etc. since you can simply park the other domains to point to your real account to redirect any visitors that may happen to accidentally type in another extension. Furthermore, it will help protect your website should you become the “next big thing” and someone tries to buy a different extension of your primary domain name.
3. Don’t Use Slang
Using slang in a domain name is a poor choice. For example, urpersonalchef.com is a poor and unprofessional substitute for yourpersonalchef.com.
4. Avoid Using Hyphens
For most people, hyphens are very confusing along with making it hard for them to remember the hyphen in a domain name. In other words, if yourdomain.com is already taken and you choose to register your-domain.com just because it’s available, it’s very likely that most people will never reach your site and only arrive at yourdomain.com instead.
5. Relate Your Name to the Industry
Domain names that are related to specific industries are well suited for the majority of online communities or sources. If there’s not an available name to perfectly match your real business name, this may be a good second option to consider.
6. Register Singular Versions
Since most domain names are singular instead of plural, there’s a strong chance of sending your visitors to mydomain.com rather than mydomains.com if you registered the plural version.
7. Brainstorm Your Ideas
Because your domain name is so important, take enough time to put some actual thought behind it before registering the first name that pops into your head. In most cases, you’ve already chosen the ideal name if you’re going into business with another person since it’s probably business related.
8. Avoid Getting Hung Up on Copyright Issues
Avoiding copyright issues is just basic common sense. For instance, if you register a domain named “dellbusinesscomputers.com”, you may have the big wigs over at Dell getting in touch with you very soon.
9. Use a Thesaurus
As you search for domain names, try to use alternative words or phrases if something you really want is already in use by someone else, which is an excellent way to generate a very creative name. But, most importantly, make sure it’s properly spelled and something that’s easily remembered as well.
10. Naturally Incorporate SEO: Make it Keyword Rich
Even though a keyword rich domain name doesn’t necessarily affect SEO all the time, it sometimes helps. For example, if someone is searching for “Florida used cars”, then floridausedcars.com could potentially be an outstanding domain to register for the simple fact that it’s precisely what individuals are looking for.
Because your domain name is such a huge aspect of your online identity, it should ideally be as distinctive as your chosen business. It’s important to be as unique as possible so it won’t be confused with another site.