Your domain name is your identity on the internet. It is like having your own phone number. Essentially, domain names serve as routing addresses on the internet and each domain name corresponds to its IP address. Generally it’s recommended that you choose a .com domain as your primary domain name because more people will be able to remember it.
Your domain name is your internet identity. Your domain name should reflect the nature of your business (or your brand identity), be easy to remember, be easy to spell, and be short and to the point. When creating your domain name, I suggest the following guidelines:
Note: Because domain names are unique and can only be used by one person at a time, you may need to try several times to come up with a name that no one else is using.
Your name should reflect the nature of your business. Your domain name should be directly related to your offer or information available at your website. This practice will not only make it easier to remember, it will be easily associated with your products or services. In the beginning, visitors may arrive through search engines. However, if your domain name is easy to remember because it is related to the nature of your business or your brand identity, visitors will return via your domain name.
Make it easy to remember. The name should be easier to remember than a telephone number. Your domain name will be easier to remember if: there are no hyphens. The bottom line with hyphens is that most domains don’t include them. So, when someone enters your domain name from memory, they may forget the hyphens.
Your name contains the plural form when it seems more natural. If you’re selling winter coats, go with “wintercoats.com” instead of “wintercoat.com.” If you don’t use the more natural wording, someone else will snatch up that name and get customers who intended to visit your website.
Make sure it is not too similar to another existing name. Avoid domain names that are too similar to existing ones. Not only do you want to avoid legal issues, but you want your brand to be distinct from that of your competitors.
Make it easy to spell. Don’t use words that are tough to spell. Similarly, don’t use words that are spelled differently in some countries. For example, “colorchart.com” may confuse buyers in Great Britain who would probably expect “colourchart.com.” But, if you have your mind set on a name that has more than one correct spelling, purchase the domains for all possible correct spellings.
The shorter your domain name the better. Difficult or long names frustrate surfers. After mistyping, they will get an error message or someone else’s website… and may not try again. Visitors will see the domain name, remember it, and hopefully visit again in the future if the domain name is simple and to the point.
Include keywords in the name. Include one or two of the most common keywords that customers may search on in your domain name. If you decide to use this strategy, remember to keep the name short and memorable.
Avoid trademark infringement. To avoid legal problems, when you decide on a name, be sure that you haven’t chosen a name that represents someone else’s trademark.
Taking these steps to create the perfect domain name for your new web-based business is an important step in your business success. It can be tricky to come up with the perfect name so don’t rush into your domain name. Take the time to brainstorm until you come up with the name that fits your site perfectly.