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Choosing the right domain for your website

Posted by Anthea Watson on 30 June 2016 |
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domain blog

What is a domain name and why do I need to choose the right domain name?

A domain name is the address of your website and is an easy way for clients to remember where you are rather than having to remember the IP (Internet Protocol) numerical address.

In a competitive market, it is important that your brand stands out for the right reasons.  From a Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) perspective there are many different factors that govern how your website is listed in search engine results but getting the domain name right can take you a long way along the path to success.  However, good company names do not always make good domain names.  From our experience working on website design projects for our clients over the years, the correct domain name can have a huge impact on how easy it is to make sure that your website is listed in search results.  Here are our top five domain name suggestions:

  1. Make it memorable.  You need your customers to find you, and whilst most of your initial traffic may come via a search engine, if you want your visitors to return, make sure that your domain name is easy to remember.
  2. Make it easy to spell with no hyphens or numbers.  Complicated domain names including punctuation or the uncertainty of whether a number is written numerically or as a word is a sure fire way to deter visitors.
  3. Make it short.  A short domain name is easier for your customers to use, meaning that they are more likely to remember you and return to your site.
  4. Make it clear.  Your domain name should indicate what you offer.  If you are unsure, ask us for a domain name suggestion.
  5. Make it unique.  Avoid similar domain names to well-established businesses if you can. (See point one)

 

Don’t just take our word for it

An article written by Rand Fishkin at Moz.com has good rules to follow when making this decision.

There are many valid points raised in this article.  Although, perhaps, the point relating to just focusing on .com domains (Only Choose Dot-Com Available Domains) could be amended.  The new domain extensions are now more widely recognised by search engine users as they have been around for some time and if you are just a local company who is not interested in international customers a dot com may not be that important.  However, if it is available then we would recommend you also secure a dot com to protect your brand.

We would emphasize the importance of Fishkin’s suggestion (Brainstorm 5 Top Keywords) in the fact that the domain doesn’t necessarily need to include the actual business name but more importantly include a service that the business is delivering or offering (See point five above).  A prime example of this is B&Q’s brand which uses diy.com domain rather than bandq.com.

We are able to provide support on securing a great domain for your business.  If you need some advice on choosing a domain name or developing a beautiful website that will be found in search engines results pages, get in touch.

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About the Author: Anthea Watson

An English teacher in another life, Anthea loves words, words, words and is loving using them to improve website performance in search engines.

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