4 tips for choosing the right domain

One of the first things people do when they’re considering launching a business is purchase a domain name, given that it isn’t always easy to find the right domain name it makes sense to secure it as soon as possible, before someone else does. However, it’s important not to choose your web address too hastily, bare in mind that it will most likely stick with you for the life of your business which could be a very long time – and you’d do well to avoid faux pas like these.

Choosing the right domain is important for a few reasons:
  • Your domain is your address on the web. As such it is a central part of your online brand identity and the impression people have of your business.
  • It can have a significant impact on how easy your business is to find online. Domain addresses that are short and simple will be found online more often than those that are not simply because they are easy to remember.
  • It has an impact on how visible your website is to find on search engines

Moz put it this way:

“Ideally, webmasters should strike a balance between finding a catchy, unique, brand-friendly domain name and having a domain that contains keywords they are trying to target. The benefit of a keyword-rich domain is two-fold. First, the domain name itself is a ranking factor that the engines consider when calculating ranking order. Second, having relevant keywords in a domain name is beneficial because the domain name is the text that other Internet users will use as anchor text when linking. Since keywords in anchor text are an important ranking factor, having these keywords in a domain name can have a positive impact on ranking.”

With that said here are my 4 top tips:

1.  Consider what top level domain is best for your business

A top level domain (TLD) is the part in your web address that comes after the dot e.g. .com. co.uk. Up until a years or so ago the choice was relatively limited now you have hundreds of TLDs to choose from that match your industry, business activity and geographic location, such as .london, .marketing, .football and many many more.

2.  Keep your domain name as short and simple as possible

This ensures that website visitors can remember your web address easily and therefore return to your website without difficulties if they wish to do so at a later date.

3. Buy your domain from a reputable provider

The best domain providers will have other features included with the name such as:

  • Email addresses to match your web address
  • WhoIs Privacy as an option. When you register a domain name, the registration details are available to anyone who searches a public database online, this information could include your name, address and telephone number. WhoIs Privacy removes your information from this database and many domain providers will provide this as aoption
  • Subdomains. These are variants of your main domain, an example of a subdomain for katrinadouglas.co.uk might be marketing.katrinadouglas.co.uk

4.   Build a domain portfolio to safe-guard your brand

I recommend buying a few related domains if you can, to safe guard your brand. At the very least I always buy the .co.uk and .com and increasingly some of the new TLDs like .marketing. I recommend buying the TLD related to your industry. For example if you are a restaurant or a mechanic you might consider buying a .rest or .car domain and setting them up to redirect to your main web address.

I recently discussed the topic of domains at The Business Show in London, see a snippet here.

Speak soon,

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