Choosing your domain name
Choosing a domain name can feel like an afterthought. You’ve already done the hard work naming your new business, and the rest of the process is just in the details. But, before choosing your domain name, there are a few important things to consider, and you might not have thought of them.
First, in a perfect world your domain name shouldn’t be an afterthought. You should be actively thinking about it when choosing your company name. This not only allows you to see what other companies are using similar names, but it ensures that there is a domain available that is at least similar to your business name. Many of the major domain websites will provide you with alternatives to consider if your domain is taken, so it’s worth thinking about this early. To get the ball rolling, Circle Media recommends looking at Crazy Domains. It’s our site of choice.
Keep your domain name short
Your domain name needs to be short and memorable. It should be to the point, contain some relevant key words, and more importantly look good on a business card. If your domain name looks like it’ll fall off the end of a standard business card or your have to keep lowering the font size; it’s too big.
There’s no room for punctuation
If your perfect domain name isn’t available it can be tempting to add a hyphen or an underscore so you can get what you want. And while this is a great option on Instagram, it doesn’t work well for domains. Think about the next time you have to tell someone your domain name over the phone, or when you want to place a radio ad for your business. Having to pause in the middle of a word to say ‘hyphen’ isn’t a great look, so it’s best to avoid it. The same goes for numbers. When you’re saying your domain out loud, how will people know if you’re using the number 2 or the spelling of two. It’ll confuse people more than you think.
Spell it properly
Going down the same path as punctuation, think about how you’re spelling your domain. If you’re using an odd spelling that might look great in writing, think about how it’s going to translate into words. If you’re going to have to correct yourself every time you say your domain, it’s worth reconsidering.
Prepare for typos
If you do go with a domain that’s easy to misspell, it’s worth spending a few more dollars and registering some common typos. This way when people inevitably make a mistake or mistype a word they’re still going to be directed to your website. I guarantee you now that Google has Gogle registered too.
Think about extensions
.com or .com.au are the classic domain extensions within Australia. If you’re registering for one we really recommend you splurge and buy the other. This firstly means that someone can’t snatch up the remaining domain and compete for your customers. It also means that if someone’s typing in your domain and they get the extension wrong, it’ll still redirect to your website. While we’re talking about extensions, it’s worth paying a bit extra and getting a mainstream option rather than something obscure. You don’t see many sites that are .agency or .bike or .space, but they exist. Going with the classic .com or .net makes you look like a reputable business and adds a layer of authenticity to your site.
Research it first
This point is especially important if you’re buying a used domain name. Make sure you do some basic research first before buying your domain. You’ll want to make sure that it doesn’t already exist and you’re buying it off a reputable source. Equally, if you’re buying a second hand domain, see what information is out there about the website. If anything questionable has gone on, the domain could have been blacklisted by Google and you’ll be punished for someone else’s mistakes. The flip side of that is that sometimes second hand domains can be extremely beneficial. Google will already be familiar with the domain so it can help you to rank better faster. But just make sure you research beforehand.
The long story short
Buying a domain is a simple process, but it’s one you’ll want to think about. Make sure your domain is short, catchy and sounds legitimate. Once you find something you like jump on it, they disappear quickly. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, it’s not an issue. There are always good alternatives around. If your heart is set you can often reach out and try to buy the domain off the owner. This can quickly turn into an expensive process, so make sure you know what your limit is early.
If you’re looking for advice on how to register a domain, so what will work best for your business, talk to the team at Circle Media today.