Choosing the best possible domain name for your website is absolutely critical. Your domain name is something that deserves hours, if not days, of reflection, and it is not an exaggeration to say that, in some circumstances, making the wrong decision can ruin a business. Bottom line: choosing a domain name is something that every website owner needs to make sure it works properly, ideally before doing anything else, and especially if the website will have a commercial purpose.
We are no strangers to domain names here at WinningWP. In fact, we’ve been talking a lot about domains in the past few months, which shows just how pressing a problem this is for potential website owners.
So far, we’ve talked about what a domain name is and what the difference is between a domain name and web hosting, and a website. And we’ve also listed the top nine website domain name registrars of 2020, meaning where to go to register and buy a domain name.
However, we have not yet delved into the things to consider when choosing your ideal domain name; in other words, how to really choose! Let’s change that today. Here are over 20 essential tips for choosing and registering a domain name (in no particular order).
1. Choose a domain name that would directly associate with your network name.
This is the first and obvious solution. You should always try to find a domain name that is synchronized with your brand and your network name. Sometimes choosing the domain name associated with your network name can be challenging, especially if your network name is generic and has already been taken by other people. Choose the correct variation.
2. The unique domain will change the game
In case you want to create a new unique name for your blog, be prepared that this type of solution requires more hard work and investment on your part. It is not recommended to put your own personal name on the domain.
4. Be unique and memorable
There are a myriad of registered domain names, and you probably don’t want to look like a copycat. Using domain names similar to Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat or any other popular social network on the market is not the best idea. Be unique.
3. Keep it short and easy to type
Your domain name should not be long and consists of 30 symbols or words. Think about the times when you need to put your website name in the ad. Ads won’t work just because people won’t want to bother remembering the mile-long website address. The shorter the better.
05. Include keywords when appropriate
By practicing SEO (Search Engine Optimization), you can improve your chances of showing up on Google when people search for businesses like yours. A great SEO tip would be to include a relevant keyword in your domain name. This can help both site visitors and search engine robots associate their website with their primary field of expertise, thus helping you rank better for that topic.
While beneficial, it is also important to use keywords sparingly and only when they naturally fit your domain name. Otherwise, don’t force it, as an overly optimized domain name may appear as spam. In other words, this domain name SEO strategy is valuable but not a must.
When including a keyword works in a stylish and memorable way, be sure to do it.
6. Check your domain name carefully
Make sure the chosen domain name does not exist here on the Internet. Also check copyrighted names and trademarks. It is better to do a full checkup at first and then deal with and have legal issues later.
7. Avoid special symbols
The domain name must be easy to pronounce and spell. Underscores and hyphens can confuse people. For example, if you want to name your network as “DIY Cosplay Costumes”, then diycosplay.com would be much better than diy-cosplay.com or diy_cosplay.com. These symbols are easy to forget and mislead each other, so it will be best if you avoid them at all costs.
8. Avoid “the,” “a,” “my,” or “your” in your domain name
Of course, this is not a strict rule, but the site “golfplayers.com” is obviously better than “thegolfplayers.com”. However, if you have no other options and the domain name with an article or pronoun seems to be the best option, you should remember to promote your network with the full form of the name.
9. Choose simple name extension
The most popular domain name extensions are the legendary .com (dot-com), .net, and .org, and we strongly recommend that you adhere to these extensions. You can of course find all kinds of new emerging extensions like .ninja, .pizza or .photography but they may not be trustworthy. Also, they are less memorable and many users will be tempted to make their clever domain name simpler. For example, instead of myworldof.ninja, they would probably write myworldofninja.com. If you don’t want your target audience to be redirected to another similar place on the web, use the standard extensions mentioned above.
10. Avoid legal trouble
Before buying your domain name, make sure you are not in competition. Research databases of trademarks and copyrights, as well as competing brands. Going with a domain name that has been adopted by other brands, even indirectly (that is, in uses other than a domain name), could lead to customer confusion and possibly legal problems as well. Therefore, it is worth spending time to make an informed and well-researched decision.