The first domain name was registered more than 30 years ago. Since then, over 330 million domains have come into circulation. With that kind of competition, choosing a good domain name for your business is imperative. A memorable domain name makes all the difference when it comes to creating a successful online presence. In simplest terms, a domain name gives people an easy-to-remember name and address for your website and allows for brand consistency.
The Importance Of A Good Domain Name
Domain names establish a unique identity for your website and represent your brand. Does it matter if your domain name is different than your business name? Yes! A targeted domain name that matches your company name is critical for avoiding brand confusion, so the ideal situation is to have your domain name match your business name. If you’re just starting your business and haven’t yet decided on a business name, you may even want to adjust your business name to match available domains. For example, suppose you were planning to name your business Shoe Palace, but the domain name shoepalace.com is taken. If shoeemporium.com is available, you could change your business name to Shoe Emporium.
Choosing a good domain name does more than identify your brand. It serves to strengthen your brand’s credibility and enhance your domain SEO.
Things to Avoid When Choosing a Domain Name
1. Domains that are too long
You want the domain name for your website to be something that’s short and to the point. This is what’s going to make it memorable and encourage people to visit it.
In an effort to make your domain name unique, you might be tempted to go with a name that’s on the longer side. But this could lead to people typing your domain name wrong when attempting to visit your site and cause you to miss out on traffic.
2. Domains that are difficult to read
Make sure your domain name is easy for people to read and, maybe more importantly, easy for them to say when they’re discussing it with others. Your audience should have to wonder if they are pronouncing your domain correctly. Also, avoid using any words that might be hard for the average person to spell.
3. Domains that contain numbers
This is almost always a bad idea since it often leads to confusion when people go to visit websites. Let’s say that you want to sell the fact that you own the best gym in town. You might be tempted to make your domain name something like number1gym.com. To you, this might seem like a perfect domain name. But what’s going to happen when half your customers try to visit your website by typing in numberonecarwash.com? Unless you buy that domain name, too, and have it redirect people to number1carwash.com, you’re going to miss out on a lot of potential traffic. It’s best to leave numbers out of the equation altogether.
4. Domains with hyphens
Adding hyphens to a domain name can be tempting because it opens up so many possibilities by giving you access to a domain name that you wouldn’t be able to get without hyphens in it.
But here’s the problem: You’re going to have to work really hard to get people to remember to put hyphens into your domain name when trying to visit your site. Many of them will end up typing your domain name in without the hyphens and visiting a site other than yours. You’re better off coming up with a different domain name than trying to squeeze hyphens into bad domain names.
5. Domain names different from your business name
When you start a business website from scratch, SEO is very important. SEO, or search engine optimization, can give your site a big boost and help it land higher on search engine results pages.
There are a variety of ways to improve the SEO of your site. You can fill it with high-quality content that contains certain keywords that are important within your industry. But one of the simplest ways to improve SEO is by making your business name and domain name the same. Google has been known to give businesses that take this approach to create domain names a slight bump in the SEO department.
6. Avoid using an extension other than .com
A .com domain name is the most common extension and still generally carries more significant value for companies. That’s because most of your customers are going to assume your website is [your business name].com. The .com extension will also have a direct impact on your search rankings. Google prioritizes this extension because Internet users default to .com domains. People expect sites to use the extension – many associate real businesses with .coms, and Google tends to play on user assumptions.
There are a few exceptions to the rule. For example, the .org extension is well-known and trusted. The .org stands for ‘organization’ and is the primary choice for charity or non-profit websites. Website with the extension .edu are assigned to educational institutions.
Your domain name matters, and with a good domain name, you can set your business up for success. Make sure that you avoid the types of domain names that we mentioned above. The future success of your website and business could very well depend on it.
Looking to learn more about coming up with a great domain name or need help with other marketing aspects? Give xSynergy Marketing a call. xSynergy Marketing is a division of xSynergy Solutions, based in Centennial, CO. As a true, full-service marketing partner, we can manage all aspects of your marketing needs: branding and design, website development, digital marketing, social media management, paid search, content management, photography, and video production. Contact us today for a complimentary marketing analysis of your existing collateral.