Have you wondered how to choose a domain name for your business? Some people spend hours trying to come up with the perfect phrase. Others just punch in words until they find one that’s available. What about those that try to be clever? You’ve seen them – a dog walking business named Pawsitively Marvelous or a copywriting firm called The Write Stuff.
As a company name or brand identity, this works. As a domain name, though, it does not. Unless your company is well-known like Pepsi, Nike, or Haagen-Daaz, you need to consider how people will search for you. A good domain name reflects your brand or your products. Therefore, you need to consider these best practices ho how to choose a domain name for your business.
The Top 2 Mistakes People Make When Choosing a Domain Name
- Trying to be clever.
- Picking a name that no one knows to search for.
So, let’s say that you already have established your business and it’s something clever like Pawsitively Marvelous. Is that a problem? No! Just pick a domain name that’s based on your service as opposed to your company name. Then, through the use of keywords and content, you can tie the two together.
For instance, you might consider using any of these domain names:
On your homepage, in your page titles, and inside your meta descriptions, you can tie your URL to your company name.
Do some searches online. How would you search for your company? Your product or service? Make sure you pick a domain name that is searchable. Some other mistakes people make when choosing a domain name include:
- Using .net, or .name or anything other than .com
- Using Hyphens
- Misspelling names on purpose.
The 3 Strategies for How to Choose a Domain Name for Your Business
Okay, so enough of what doesn’t work. Let’s focus on what does.
There are three basic strategies to choose from when picking a name. Which one you decide to go with will depend on the purpose of your site and how you want to be found by people.
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Strategy #1: Pick A Domain Name People Can’t Forget
Have you ever heard a song that you just can’t get out of your head? What is it about certain words, phrases, or tunes that stick with us?
There is a mechanism in the brain called the phonological loop, which determines how hard or easy something is to remember based on how it sounds.
What do Coca-Cola, YouTube, Bed Bath and Beyond, Twitter, Paypal, Captain Crunch, M&M’s, and Marylin Monroe have in common?
They all have repeating consonants or vowels.
This repetitive sound makes the name easier to remember, or more accurately, much harder to forget.
The idea of naming your business or website based on the phonological loop is best used for a startup or a company looking to invest in a lot of personal branding.
If you want your name to be spread via word of mouth, then coming up with a catchy name is a good strategy.
Strategy #2: Use a Long-Tail Keyword to Name Your Website
Early in my career, I purchased the domain MySFLiving.com. I was in real estate, and I thought it was a clever name. The problem was that nobody was searching for “MySFLiving.” I chose a keyword phrase that no one was looking for.
A better idea would have been to buy the domain www.SanFranciscoHomesForSale.com which gets over 40,000 searches a month.
How much traffic can you get by matching your URL to a search term?
As an exercise, go to Google and type in any three-word search term related to your business. What you will likely find is that MOST of the results will have the search term in their domain name. And likely at the very top will be the EXACT keyword phrase as a domain.
This is no coincidence.
The domain URL alone is a HUGE component of being able to rank for a particular phrase. This strategy generates a lot of organic traffic, but it is not ideal for companies trying to establish a brand. So, you will need to incorporate other content strategies to build your brand.
Strategy #3- Use Your Name as Your Domain Name
Sometimes the simplest solution is the best one.
The web used to be an anonymous place where you could surf online without anyone knowing who you were. However, the web today is all about people and connections. Your name is your personal brand. It’s the most common way people search for you.
If your website or business involves the selling of your personal services, then perhaps the best URL is your name.
The Domain Name is Just One Element of the Equation
Your URL is very important, but it’s not the only thing that drives traffic. You need a mobile-friendly site, good content, and optimized landing pages. A website is like a living organism. It will function without all of its parts, but it performs best when everything works together.
The first step is to pick the best domain name for your business. Then, contact us for a consultation on the best website design. We offer some website design services, and all our sites are custom-designed to your business. We offer a no-risk program where we design your site for free. You only pay if you like it. There is no risk, so call now!