12 Things to Think About When Choosing Your Domain Name

When you first start a website or blog, there are a lot of important decisions to make. While you probably just want to sit down and start blogging, you’ll first need to:

  • Choose a blogging platform
  • Decide which web host you’re going to go with
  • Choose your domain name

This article covers 12 top things to think about when choosing your domain name for your business.

2 Things to Think About When Choosing Your Domain Name - Blog

If you’re looking for help with the other two steps, you can find that here:

How To Start A Blog In 30 Minutes Or Less

How To Choose A Web Host: 8 Point Checklist

12 considerations when choosing a domain name

As you are deciding on your domain name, I’d strongly recommend you work your way through this list. It will help you avoid making a mistake that could cost you down the road!

1. Make it easy to remember

You want to choose a name that will immediately make sense to people. In other words, something that they will remember after hearing just once. This usually goes hand in hand with some of the other tips below, like keeping your domain name as short as possible.

Choose a domain name that makes sense and is easy to remember. #Blog4ProfitClick To Tweet

Choose: www.billscars.com

Avoid: www.billsautomotiverepairstallahassee.com

 2. Don't Include hyphens 

Years ago, Google showed a preference for domain names that contained keywords. For instance, if your domain name contained the keywords “bakery San Francisco”, you would be more likely to rank for those words in Google.

This led to many businesses cramming as many keywords as possible into their name, often using hyphens to separate them.

This no longer works. Not only will it NOT help you in Google, it can be a turn off to your potential visitors and customers.

Choose: www.tinasbakery.com

Avoid: www.best-bakery-san-francisco.com

3. Make it easy to spell

You don’t want to risk having a potential customer misspell your domain name and reach someone else’s site.

To avoid this, choose a domain name that’s very easy to spell – in other words, that’s very difficult to MISSPELL.

Choose: www.coffeeaddicts.com

Avoid: www.coffeeaddictsanonymous.com (anonymous is easy to misspell and easy to mistype)

4. Choose the best extension 

There are many different domain name extensions to choose from: .com, .net,  .info, .biz, etc.

Yet .com remains the BEST choice if you can swing it!  While there’s not much evidence to support that Google prefers it, it’s still the most common extension, making it the easiest to remember.

The .com extension for your domain name remains the BEST choice if you can get it! #Blog4ProfitClick To Tweet

Choose: www.fashioncentral.com

Avoid: www.fashioncentral.biz

5. Keep it as short as possible

Keeping your domain short makes it easier to remember and often easier to spell too. I recommend using no more than two or three words, and keeping those words as short as possible.

Keep your domain name short. It makes it easier to remember and often easier to spell too. #Blog4ProfitClick To Tweet

Choose: www.miamiseo.com

Avoid: www.miamisearchengineoptimization.com

6. Make sure your name is clearly related to your business

Some business owners opt for a catchy, clever domain name thinking it will help them with their branding. Unfortunately, this seldom works.

Make sure to choose a name that’s clearly related to your business or product(s). This way if people hear your domain name, they’ll immediately have a sense of what it is you do or sell.

And if you can choose a domain that does that AND is catchy – even better!

For a plumbing business:

Choose: www.tedsplumbing.com

Avoid: www.tedsmith.com

7. Be unique

Obviously you want to choose a domain name that no one else has picked. But that’s not what I’m talking about here: you want to choose a name that a) doesn’t infringe on anyone else’s trademarks, and b) isn’t very similar to another domain name.

This will help avoid confusion as well as pesky law suits 😉

Choose: www.FBAdhelp.com

Avoid: www.FacebookAdHelp.com

8. Choose something that is easy to say

This one goes hand in hand with keeping your domain name easy to remember. If someone says your domain name out loud, you want to make sure it’s easy to pronounce and understand.

Avoid using foreign words (unless you’re targeting a foreign audience), unfamiliar words or phrases or strings of random letters.

Choose: www.frenchcuisine.com

Avoid: www.cuisinefrancais.com

9. Choose a name that you can also claim on social media

Typically, you want your domain name and social media handles to be the same (or similar). For instance, my domain is www.kimgarst.com, and all my social media handles are similar: e.g., www.pinterest/kimgarst, www.twitter.com/kimgarst, etc.)

Typically, you want your domain name and social media handles to be the same (or similar). #BrandingClick To Tweet

When choosing your domain name, check your favorite social media platforms to make sure you can choose a similar handle. While this can make the whole process even more difficult, in the long run, you’ll be happy you can maintain some consistent branding.

10. Local business owners: think locally

 If your company is solely focused on a local market (for instance, a restaurant, auto repair shop, clothing boutique, etc.), consider using your city name in your domain.

This will help differentiate your domain from those of nationwide businesses. It will also open up more options as local domain names won’t be so competitive.

Choose: www.sandiegobakery.com

Avoid: www.weddingbakery.com

11. Consider buying all the extensions 

As mentioned above, it’s usually best to choose a .com domain name if possible.  But something to consider is whether or not you should buy ALL the extensions of your domain.

For instance, imagine that you decided on www.savvywebdesign.com. What happens if someone buys up www.savvywebdesign.net and www.savvywebdesign.org and uses those for their business?

Buying these extensions doesn’t mean you need to use them. You can either just let them sit, unused, or redirect them to your actual domain (ask a techy friend to help you, if need be!).

12. Think about your branding

If you’re still stuck for a name, this final tip may help. If your website or blog is intended to market your business, just use your business name.

If you’re planning to market yourself (e.g., as a business consultant), go with your full name (www.kimgarst.com).

Starting a new blog is an exciting endeavor! Hopefully this post has given you some direction when it comes to one of the most important parts of the process – choosing your domain name.

While you can always change your domain later, this can cause setbacks when it comes to search engine rankings and branding. Better to choose your name carefully at the beginning and stick with it for the long term!

Any questions about choosing a domain name? Share them below and I’ll see what I can do to help!

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manchun kumar
manchun kumar
5 years ago

great article for help to select domain name thank you

Julian
Julian
5 years ago

Great article Kim! I defenitly agree that .com is your best option.

niraj bari
niraj bari
5 years ago

Great Article! Very Informative And Helpful Thanks

S Chauhan
S Chauhan
5 years ago

Hi Kim, Thanks for sharing this post. its really helpful.

Natalie Stewart
Natalie Stewart
5 years ago

Loved your tips, Kim. You always bring out the best write up, simple, short and always to the point. Surely going to bookmark this again. Domain of a webpage is no doubt the most important part upon which your entire branding depends so no negligent should be welcomed. Thanks for sharing these useful tips.

Kim Garst
Admin
Reply to  Natalie Stewart
5 years ago

Thank you, Natalie!!

Pagli ladki
Pagli ladki
4 years ago

Very nice and informatic article on domain, this will help us to understand the importance of domain while booking.Thanks for sharing.

Swati
Swati
4 years ago

Useful post. One should always check domain authority and Page authority before buying a used domain . I have created blog on (Things to keep in mind before buying Domain) do check it out

Rachel Garcia
Rachel Garcia
3 years ago

Thanks for sharing. You can start registering domains with special characters, or what are called IDN domains, although it would be convenient to also register your alternate domain without the special character that will be easier to pronounce.

Tayyaba Fatima
Tayyaba Fatima
3 years ago

this is helpful article, thanks for sharing.

Sachin
Sachin
2 years ago

Hi Kim, thanks for sharing this article. Very SImple and informative.

Jerry Peres
2 years ago

Very Nice Blog..!! Thank you for sharing this information with us. It is very useful and important information for those who are doing this work for the first time.

Easy.gr
Easy.gr
1 year ago

Great post!
Very informative post, thanks for sharing this post here with us.

Sam Gibson
1 year ago

My sister-in-law is hoping to start a blog that will focus on different recipes that you can do with potatoes. She’s hoping to come up with a catchy website name and title to help entice people to follow her. I appreciate your tip about how you’ll want to find a domain name that’s easy to pronounce and to try and say it out loud before making a final decision. She’ll probably want to work with a reputable professional to help her choose the right domain name.

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