To start, for anyone who doesn’t know, a domain name is the URL for your website. For example, masterpiecewebdesigns.com is our domain name.
Choosing your domain name is very important because it can greatly help the search engines to know what your business is all about, just by reading the name. Let’s use our domain as an example. When the Google/Bing robots search or crawl our website, they immediately know that web design is a big part of our business…..because ‘web design’ is in the domain name.
A shorter domain name is best. Why? It’s easier to type. It’s easier to remember. It will also affect how long your emails are. So, firstname.lastname@example.org is really too long, but you can’t have everything. J
Your domain name should reflect your brand/business. You wouldn’t want to choose autoservice.com if you were selling luxury watches. Seems obvious, but you get the idea.
A .com or .org domain extension is still the best. There are all kinds of domain extensions available now….. .info , .design , .actor, etc. The list goes on and on. While that’s catchy, it’s just another extension for someone to have to remember. Most everyone assumes your extension is .com or .org. .com stands for Commercial and is the most popular. However, if you are a non-profit company, you will want to choose .org, which stands for Organization and is recognized as a non-profit domain name.
If you are a new business, choose your domain name before choosing your company name. So many domain names are already taken, that you will need to get your domain name first, in order to brand it with your company name.
How to find what domain names are available: GoDaddy is great for choosing your domain name. You can go to this link to search for URLs available: https://www.godaddy.com/offers/domains/godaddy-domains
When you buy a domain name, you ‘lease’ it each year. Google seems to give more importance to domain name that have been leased for more than 2 years. It makes Google think that you are a business that plans to stick around.
Also, another important tip about domain names….set it up to auto renew. We have seen clients lose their domain name because they didn’t know it was going to expire (reminder emails went to SPAM) and someone else gobbled up their domain name, while they weren’t paying attention. A nightmare situation for any business.
So…what’s in a domain name? A LOT!