Choosing an Effective Domain Name

When you first start your business, one of the initial things that you will need to do is to choose a domain name for your business/website. In fact, your domain name will be one of the first things that the other person sees when looking at your brand. One thing that you should keep in mind is that you will have to live with that domain name for a very long time so you better make it a good one.

What goes into choosing a domain name?

As you are in the process of deciding which domain name you should choose, you will want to factor in certain concepts before you actually make a final decision. You will want to choose a name that is short, unusual, and that typifies your particular brand. Okay, those are the things that you should keep in mind. What about things that you should not choose?

Your domain name should be optimized and it should be married to your brand.

Your domain name should: 

  • Typify your brand: The name should have some aspect of your brand in it. It should also be a name that people will remember and that is unique to you and to your business.
  • Be easy to pronounce: Is it easy for you to pronounce your domain name? Is it easy for other people to pronounce it too? If the answer to either one of those questions is no, you may want to rethink the name and come up with something that fits the criteria.
  • Be short: The last thing you want it for your domain name to be long and cumbersome. You want it to be short, easy to type, easy to pronounce, and easy to share with other people.
  • Be a .com, if possible: .com is still the most common suffix for domain names. That suffix works for all sorts of businesses, no matter what you are selling. Of course, other suffixes will also work but they are not preferable.
  • Stay far away from other, similar domain names: If you have a domain name that sounds similar to another business’ (or individual’s) domain name, you may run into trouble. You certainly do not want to get involved with any sort of copyright infringement problems. Tap into your creativity and come up with a name that is uniquely yours.
  • Use a strong keyword, if possible: A keyword is very important if it works in your domain name. That will help to keep you optimized for the search engines. However, it is not always possible to use a keyword. If you don’t have that as an option, you will come up with another creative domain name.
  • Give a clear message about what you are selling: If you do it correctly, your domain name will instantly let people know about your brand and your offerings. That will go a long way to distinguishing the right target audience from the people who are actually not your potential clients.
  • Not necessarily be carved in stone: Of course, you want to keep in mind that your domain name will be with you for a long time. However, that doesn’t mean that it will necessarily be with you forever. If, after a significant amount of time, you find that your domain name just isn’t working for you anymore (maybe you have taken your business in a different direction), you can revise the name and make it work for your new direction.
  • Stay away from hyphens and numerals: Numerals and hyphens tend to confuse people. That especially applies if you say your domain name to the other person. The number and/or hyphen can be confusing because the other person will not understand if you are using the number instead of the word and when it comes to hyphens, there are several different types of dashes that the other person may use instead. In that case, he or she will never get to your website (or, at least, not easily) and the person may just end up walking away. Why ask for trouble?

Conclusion

As you are setting up your new business and putting all of the pieces into place initially, your domain name is one of the first things that you need to establish. Domain names are not in any way random. A lot of thought goes into choosing a domain name and you should make sure that yours is a clear representation of who you are and what you represent.

 

Michael Cohn

Founder and CTO at CompuKol Communications LLC

Michael Cohn is the founder and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of CompuKol Communications LLC. He has over 25 years of experience in IT and web technologies.

Mr. Cohn founded CompuKol Communications to help small businesses and entrepreneurs increase their exposure and reputation on the Internet. CompuKol consults, creates, and implements communication strategies for small businesses to monopolize their markets with a unique business voice, vision, and visibility.

Prior to that, Mr. Cohn spent a significant amount of time at a major telecommunications company, where his main focus was on initiating and leading synergy efforts across all business units by dramatically improving efficiency, online collaboration, and the company’s Intranet capabilities, which accelerated gains in business productivity. His expertise includes social media marketing strategies; internet marketing; web presence design; business analysis; project management; management of global cross-matrix teams; systems engineering and analysis, architecture, prototyping and integration; technology evaluation and assessment; systems development; performance evaluation; and management of off-shore development.

Mr. Cohn earned a Master’s degree in project management from George Washington University in Washington, DC; and a Master’s degree in computer science and a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck, NJ.

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