Congratulations! You’ve decided to start your own website. It’s a big decision that will necessitate many smaller decisions along the way, and the first of these is your choice in domain names. If you’re wondering how to craft or create the right URL for you, take these seven tips to heart.
- Figure Out Your Focus
What kind of website are you hoping to build? If it’s a serious, money-making business, you’ll want a sleek domain name that speaks to your professionalism. On the other hand, if you’re just starting a round-up blog for funny cat videos, you can relax your standards a little and have fun.
- List Your Keywords
Drafting a list of keywords will help you come up with different combinations of words and phrases for your URL. For example, if you’re a dentist starting a website for your new practice, your keywords might look something like this:
- Keep It Simple
You don’t want to get crazy with your domain name. If it’s too long or complicated to remember right off the bat, your visitors are likely to forget it a few days later when they’re thinking about your brand and wondering what you were called. A good rule of thumb is to keep your domain name less than four words and 20-30 characters long.
- Avoid Numbers
Piggybacking off the above, numbers are one of the easiest things for people to mess up when they’re visiting a new website. They’ll type Crazy8.com instead of CrazyEight.com, or they’ll forget that your website is 1000Balloons.com instead of 10000Balloons.com. If you don’t want to lose customers over something so silly, keep numbers out of your domain name.
- Consider Your Demographic
Most grandmothers won’t understand what “on fleek” means, so if your target market is above the 18-49 age bracket, set aside the slang. On the flip side, if you’re advertising to young kids and teenagers, don’t use words and phrases that require a master’s degree to understand. Let your domain name reflect your chosen demographic.
- Use Your Location
This is especially important if your website is advertising a brick-and-mortar business where you provide goods and services for a particular area. You don’t want someone in Los Angeles to think that your New York carpet cleaning service is for them, so instead of dubbing yourself CarpetWizards.com, consider NYCarpetWizards.com instead. It will get the point across without sacrificing your pithy name.
- Check For Availability
Last but certainly not least, make sure that your intended domain name is available for public use before you start registering things in its name. It might be taken or copyrighted by someone else, or it might be too similar to another brand for comfort. There are plenty of websites out there that will let you check available domain names with the click of a button, so do your homework if you hope to pass the class.
These are just a few things to keep in mind as you consider various domain names. Whatever kind of content that you’re putting on the web, you’ll need a good place to host it, so use these tips to choose a high-impact domain name that will ensure your growth and success as a brand.