Owning a domain starts with a domain name search. Upon confirmation of availability, purchase is made and ownership is assumed.
A domain name is the unique identity that describes your location on the web. Just like choosing the perfect business name, a perfect domain name is also helpful for your business.
However, before you take up ownership of that domain name you have in mind, you should see these 7 things we figured you should consider before buying any domain name.
7 Things to Consider During Your Domain Name Search
- Choose a Descriptive Name
- The Shorter, the Better
- Think About Long Term Relevance
- Avoid Unpopular TLDs
- Consider Buying Other Common TLDs
- Keep Your Audience in Mind
- Consider Exact Match Domains
1. Choose a Descriptive Name
Subject to domain name search availability, this is probably the most important factor you want to consider when choosing a domain name for your business. Except you are an existing brand, it is much easier for people to tell your business from your domain name if you have a descriptive name. For example, busbud.com or megabus.com describes a bus company business more than wander.com does.
So the key here is to think about your business from the perspective of your customers. Would your customers be able to recognize your business through your domain name?
In cases where your domain name search turns out to be unavailable, you can deepen your search for other suitable domain names with the help of a domain name generator.
2. The Simpler and Shorter, The Better
As with regular Google searches, Google can still help your search even if you’ve got the spelling wrong but it is not so with a misspelled domain name.
Just like in our previous examples, it is probably easier to remember short and descriptive domain names than it is to remember longer ones. “Megabus.com” is just short enough to be remembered by anyone and descriptive enough to tell its business.
Although domain name purchases are subject to domain name search availability, you should always remember that when your target customers cannot remember or spell your domain name correctly, it becomes even harder for them to find you on the web.
Another important thing to avoid is slangs in your domain names. E.g. “showstyles.com” is a lot easier to remember than the slang variant “showstylz.com”. So misspellings are highly discouraged in domain names for obvious reasons.
3. Think About Long Term Relevance
Think about the long term relevance of the domain name you are about to choose. Will your domain name remain relevant to your business a couple of years down the line?
For example, an ecommerce site buybluejeans.com starts out with selling only blue jeans. 5 years down the line, it expands its business operation to include all fashion wear, including shoes. The domain “buybluejeans.com” is no longer fully relevant to this business’ new concern. In cases like that, it becomes inevitable to go through a full rebranding where your existing business name, domain and even logo might have to be changed to align with your new business goals.
4. Avoid Unpopular TLD
Unpopular TLDs are top level domains no one probably ever uses or even remembers. It is best to stick with .com or other popular TLDs like .ca, .co.uk etc. which most people are familiar with. If you are a body or a non-profit, it might just be okay to use .org. Use of .edu works for educational institutions too.
5. Consider Buying Other Common TLDs
You will observe that while “megabus.com” is the mega value website for travel in Canada, the US and the UK, “megabus.ca” redirects you to the company’s Canada bus service.
So when you buy your domain name, you might want to buy up other equally poplar TLDs around it to avoid a close competitor taking undue advantage. Most domain search availability tools would have a domain name generator embedded to help you choose which other TLDs you need to purchase.
6. Consider Exact Match Domains
Exact match domains (EMDs) are domain names that reflect the exact keywords search engine users might be entering into their search boxes. For example, “bookabus.com” is an exact match domain for a searcher who is trying to book a bus online.
The advantage of such EMDs is that there’s a likely chance of your site ranking for such searches. This gives you an edge over other competitors in your industry. However, Google maintains an unfriendly stance for click bait or spammy exact match domains.
7. Keep Your Audience in Mind:
There’s a great chance that you already have an existing business before deciding to purchase a domain to go with it? If that is not the case for you, then it would be much easier to plan everything together. The key here is to ensure that there exists uniformity between your business name, domain name and social media pages.
However, if you already have an existing business name or some sort of identity such as a popular social media page, it is very important that you keep your audience in mind while searching for the best domain for your business. Staying with a name your customers already know you with is probably better than going off with a new domain name entirely.
Now that you’ve probably made a mental note of the things you should be doing or not be doing while choosing your domain name, I’m of the opinion that no business can function independent of its domain name on the web. So, it is best that you get everything right before setting out.
A tip I would like to leave you in this closing note is to always think a name through before you purchase it. You can start by asking yourself what is the future of my business? Will this domain still fit into its future?
We hope you have found this guide on things to consider when choosing a domain name helpful?
Have you had an experience with a domain name that did not suffice for the next phase of your business and you had to make a change? Please share your experience with us in the comment section below.