Choosing a domain name for your business requires much thought and effort, comparable to choosing a name for your business.
It is your permanent identity on the internet, and goes a long way in promoting your products and/ or services.
Whether it is a blog or business, you would desire a domain name that is short and memorable.
So why not make it identical to your real name?
But unfortunately there are good chances that your name is already taken as .org or .net.
In such a scenario here is what you can do.
While it is true that .com is the most popular extension, a different one can make your domain exceptional. For example, if you are based in India, why not consider.co.in as an extension.
Choose a name that brands your business or blog or whatever, and which will also appeal to people on a personal level. An excellent example is Fb.com, a domain name that Facebook purchased for a hopping price of USD 8.5 million from American Farm Bureau Federation.
If you are popularly known by a nickname, it makes sense to buy a domain name that has your nickname instead of your real name. Here is an example. The famous cricketer Sachin Tendulkar is also known as “master blaster”. If he starts a blog with a domain name “master blaster”, by all counts people will immediately relate the website to Sachin.
But is it proper to choose exact match domain names?
Some people are tempted to choose an exact match domain or EMD to reinforce SEO.
This was okay till a few years ago. But not now, because Google has altered their algorithms by downgrading EMDs in the rankings.
The best bet is to use your brand name as the domain name. After all it is by the brand consumers remember you.
However when you do so here are some pointers.
• Use a domain that is associated with your business or the type of business you do.
• Spell the words correctly. This helps in SEO. Most people type the key words to search a website in the internet, so it makes sense if you spelled the brand correctly. The last thing you would want is for people to mistype your domain and end up in a different site.
• It must be easy to type. Just look at the words Yahoo and Google. One thing in common to both of them is they are easy to type.
• Be cautious while using numbers or words that sound like numbers in your domain name. For example, if you own a travel agency by name Road To Heaven you might name it RoadToHeaven.com or perhaps Road2Heaven.com. The latter is not necessarily a good option.
• It must be easy to pronounce. It is not uncommon for people to share a domain name by word of mouth. If you struggle to pronounce it correctly, you may end up sharing the wrong domain name.
• Avoid hyphens – Yes, it is true hyphens will make your domain name unique. But it will make things difficult, either to spell or pronounce. Imagine what could have happened if the name Facebook was Face_Book.
Changing domain names
Some business owners are tempted to change their domain names, either because their business is slowing down or because of superstition.
Such a move can however spell disaster.
Here is a case in point.
An entrepreneur selling spices online had a domain name Spicesonline.com.
He decided to change it and did so by buying a new domain name Spices.com, which he thought will give a push to his business.
Despite the high hopes he had, business plunged. Here is the reason why.
The new domain he had purchased had been earlier content free or a parked site, which was discarded for nearly a decade. Moreover when active the site attracted traffic from another country.
The above case goes to prove the extent of research you must do while selecting or changing a domain name.
Another factor you must keep in mind is that the domain name must last for years.
After all it is the biggest element that defines your trade or business.
Therefore, the slogan is “Think Long Term”.
Act fast when it comes to domain name purchase. Remember, domain names sell quickly. If your reactions are slow you may lose a wonderful opportunity.
If you are still struggling to find the right domain name a domain registrar can help you with alternate names for your selection.
An SME owner has this to say, “My domain name has added credibility to my business. My image is now more professional than ever before”.
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