How to Choose a Domain Name for a Business Website
Choosing a domain name for your company’s website is a lot like choosing the company name itself. Many companies even brainstorm their company name and domain at the same time to ensure the name they want is an available domain.
Picking the best domain name for your business is a major task that requires careful thought, so don’t take it lightly. Before you register a new domain, keep these 10 tips and best practices in mind.
1. Domain names should be short and simple
If your domain name is long and complicated, people will have a hard time remembering it. Resist the urge to be overly witty or wordy, because simple is always best.
2. Make it memorable
There are hundreds of millions of registered domain names on the internet. If you can think of a memorable name for your company’s home on the internet, you’ll have better luck getting traffic to your website.
3. Register the .com domain when possible
There are a variety of domain extensions you can register. Some like .org and .net are familiar and common, but there are also countless other unique and creative extensions.
Since .com is the most common and popular, it’s best to claim it when you have the chance.
4. Add keywords to your domain
Think about the keywords and phrases potential customers would use when searching online for businesses like yours. This can be a great way to raise your website’s visibility in search engines, too.
5. Think about your company’s branding
Every small business should spend time thinking about the overall brand and mission of their company. These important details will influence everything your company does, including the domain name you choose.
6. Research the domain name before buying
To avoid legal issues, the name you choose shouldn’t be trademarked, copyrighted or be in use by another business.
Start your research here, with the United States Patent and Trademark Office’s searchable trademark database. Search for copyrights here, via the U.S. Copyright Office. You’ll know if another business or entity is using your domain when you check to see if it has already been registered.
7. Claim your corresponding social media accounts
In a perfect world, you’ll be able to claim your domain name on all major social media channels, too.
8. Pick a secure and trustworthy domain registrar
There are tons of domain registrars to choose from, including popular ones like GoDaddy, NameCheap and HostGator. Many offer a free domain registration with the purchase of hosting.
9. Shop around for domain registration deals
It’s not uncommon for website registrars and hosting services to entice new customers with affordable domain pricing. Before you make a final purchase, search for coupons and other deals.
10. Don’t worry too much if your perfect domain is already taken
Because there are so many registered domains, it can be shockingly hard to get the name you really want. Unfortunately, there’s not much you can do when this happens (unless the domain is available for purchase from the current owner and you’re willing to make an offer.)
When the perfect name is taken, all you can do is move on and keep brainstorming. Sooner or later, you’ll think up the winning domain name for your small business.