Domain name registration is a necessary, easy and strategically important first step in establishing an online presence, whether it’s for business purposes or otherwise. A well chosen domain name can help your website be a success in several ways, particularly when it comes to being found within search engines. It can also help with brand consistency if you can match it closely to your business name or service.
Registering your domain name is easy, but some important decisions are required before you make the final choice. Below are five factors that will influence your decision and determine just how successful your domain is in driving traffic to your website.
The original and still the most popular domain extension is the .com with most people having been very familiar with it for a long time. Many people associate the .com extension as the standard extension for a business and it is the tendency of many users to look for the .com version of a website, whether it exists or not, before checking for other extensions. The .com is also one of the most sought after extensions when it comes to premium domain / aftermarket sales, where owners privately sell domain on for inflated prices.
Thinking towards extensions has been changing in recent times, with less emphasis being placed on the extension and more on the words used before it i.e. ‘yourcompany’ .com, ‘mycompany’ .com because this is will have bigger impact on brand consistency and search rankings than the extension itself.
However, the correct extension is still important. Nowadays there are a significant number of other domain extensions to choose from including .co.uk, .net, .org, .biz, .me, .tv, .eu, .tel and many more. Most domain extensions today are as likely to be spidered by search engines as any other.
It’s also worth considering name protection, by registering your chosen name in multiple extensions. Some of the most popular extensions are .com, .net,.org, .info, .biz and .co.uk so, if you do want to protect your domain then it would be worth checking it is available in these extensions as well.
Your chosen domain keyword(s) (the part before the extension) is an important aspect to consider when choosing your domain name. You should try where possible to embed a main keyword or phrase into the domain name. This keyword or phrase could be your company name, a service you offer, the name of a local group etc but should, where possible (and if available), be relevant to the focus of the website. For instance, if you sell red widgets, look at domain variations such as yourcompany.com, redwidgets.com, widgets.com and remember to try in different extensions.
Relevant and well thought keywords within your domain can have a significant impact on how your website will perform in search engines, not just for brand searches, but also for searches related to the service you are offering.
Hyphenated Domain Names
Should you get a hyphenated domain name? Hyphenated domain names are slightly more difficult to remember and to communicate correctly. There is a tendency to forget the hyphen or mention it in the wrong places when information is passed by word of mouth and hence it is wise, if possible, to avoid them. This is purely a communication issue so, if there is no choice but to choose the hyphenated version, just do so. Search Engines do not discriminate against hyphenated domains…you just need to make sure you communicate the domain correctly.
Short and Memorable
Choose a domain name that is short, memorable and easy to pronounce. A shorter domain name is always easier to remember than a long one. Word of mouth advertisement is considered to be one of the most popular forms of advertising in a business so a short and memorable domain is ideal for people to remember your website and pass the word around. Try to keep your domain name registration topically relevant, whether it be brand or service related. As search engines get smarter and smarter, sites that display total relevance will rank higher than catch all sites.
Trademarks and copyrights
Be sure to avoid other companies’ trademarks and copyrights when choosing your domain name. Legislation has been passed making “CyberSquating” illegal. Be ethical in your domain name registrations to avoid possible legal pitfalls.
Finally, treat your domain name as an asset. Keep the domain name passwords safe! The last thing you want is for somebody to steal your domain name and redirect it on the internet.
There are several ways to register a unique domain name.
Register your own domain name through Easyspace.com today!