10 Tips For Choosing A Domain Name

  1. Stick with “.com”

    The .com TLD (top-level domain) is by far the most widely accepted extension for a domain name. If you are looking for a domain name for a business then it is even more important to choose a .com for your domain name because of the credibility boost that a .com domain name brings. Yes, there are still some very successful businesses that have domain names ending in .net or .org but just think, as a new business do you really want to chance having a lot of your customers forget that your domain name ends in .net and instead type in your domain name + .com when they go to find your Website? There are some exceptions to this rule of course. If you run a business that is based in a country outside of the United States then it can be smart to use a local TLD (.uk for the United Kingdom, .au for Australia, .ca for Canada, .de for Germany, .cn for China, etc.).

  2. One Possible Spelling

    Try to find a domain name that only has one possible spelling. Most people cannot spell so make it easy for your Website visitors to remember by choosing a domain name without a confusing spelling.

  3. Shorter is Better

    The shorter your domain name is then the easier it is for your visitors to remember, the easier it is for your visitors to type, and the easier it is for your visitors to tell others about your domain name. All of these are good things. The easier the domain is to type then the better the domain will be.

  4. Commercial Appeal

    A quick way to test if your domain has commercial appeal or marketability is if you think that the domain name will look good up on a billboard or in a commercial. This is especially important if you are looking for a business domain name but it is of course important for personal domain names as well.

  5. No Hyphens

    If at all possible then avoid using a hyphenated domain name. Sure, many businesses will use a domain name with a hyphen or even two or three but the two main problems with hyphenated domain names is that people forget where the hyphens go (or forget them altogether) and hyphenated domain names can lose traffic to similar domain names that do not have hyphens (i.e. a visitor wants to return to your domain name which is www.amy-hissom.com but instead types in www.amyhissom.com and inadvertently ends up on a competitor’s Website). A hyphenated domain name can often seem like a cheap substitute for the same domain name without the hyphen in the eyes of many visitors. You don’t want to send the message to your Website visitors that you are settling for second best and could only register www.amy-hissom.com and not the better domain choice of www.amyhissom.com.

  6. Keyword Rich

    Choose a domain name that is full of keywords that are related to your Website. If your Website sells textbooks then try and choose a domain name that contains the word “textbooks” in the domain name.

  7. Type-In Traffic

    Type-In traffic is when someone navigates directly to a Website by simply typing in what they are looking for and then “.com” on the end into their URL bar in their browser. If you can find an exact match keyword only domain name then you have a good chance of receiving some type in traffic to the domain and also receiving some Search Engine Optimization (SEO) benefit to using the domain name as well.

  8. Avoid Numeral Substitutions

    Numerals in a domain can work ok but avoid substituting common words with numerals as they can often be confusing and hard to remember. For example, try not to use the numeral “4 instead of “for”, “2" instead of “to”, etc. The numeral “0″ is often mistaken for the letter “O” and vice versa. Make sure that there is no confusion between the 2 in your domain name.

  9. Unique and Memorable

    The more unique a domain name is then the easier it is to remember. Stay within the constraints of the other rules when searching for a unique domain name but if you can be clever and pull it off then finding a unique domain name can pay off handsomely for years to come. If you can easily remember a domain name after hearing it just once then there is a good chance that you have found a memorable domain name.

  10. Brainstorm

    If you have a business partner or a friend then use them to bounce some ideas around. Start by thinking of your ideal domain name and then throw out as many words and combinations of words related to that ideal domain name as possible. Sooner or later you are bound to have a flash of genius and find a great domain name.