10 Tips for Choosing a Domain Name for Your New Website

Building a website for your business is one of the best ways to get your company’s information in front of a broader audience. You’ll be better able to target customers looking for services like yours who may not know about your business or be familiar with the types of services you provide. But before you can launch your site, you’ll need to choose a domain name so people can find your site online. Not sure where to start? Here are a few tips that can help you get your newly built site in front of more eyes.

1. Keep It Short
Your domain name is what people can type into the search bar to find your website. If it’s too long, it can be difficult for people to remember let alone type on their mobile devices. And since more people are relying on mobile devices to surf the web than ever before, shorter domain names are even more important. Ideally, your domain name should be less than 15 characters long. If you need to go over that character count slightly, you should be fine. But err on the side of caution. Keep it short, simple and sweet.

2. Make It Easy to Say
Take a moment to think of some domain names other businesses use off the top of your head. Chances are that they’re all easy to say. Amazon.com, Progressive.com, and Shopify.com are all short and easy to say. That ease makes them more memorable which makes it easier for prospective clients to remember your business’s website. If you choose a domain name that’s hard to say or is confusing to say, you could alienate prospective clients and customers.

3. Avoid Using Trademarks You Don’t Own
Your domain name should be unique to your business, not used by someone else. And that means you’ll need to make sure the name you choose isn’t already in use and doesn’t incorporate a trademarked phrase owned by another company. If you choose a name that someone else has trademarked or use a protected phrase in your domain name, the owner of that phrase could sue you. If this happens, you risk fines and could have to start the domain name hunt over from scratch. 

4. Make Sure It’s Easy to Type
Your domain name should also be easy to type. Remember, people tend to search for businesses on mobile devices and trying to type symbols like hyphens, exclamation points, numbers, and ampersands can be difficult at best on a small keyboard. Ask your friends and family to type in any domain name you’re considering. If they find it overly difficult, choose something else, or if you’re thinking of using hyphens or other symbols, choose something else. You may need to try several iterations of a domain name before you find one that strikes the perfect balance.

5. Choose a .com Extension if You Can
The most popular websites almost always use a .com extension. It’s what most people think about when they’re searching for a site and it’s the default autofill shortcut on most mobile keyboards. If you can, try to choose a domain name that can use a .com extension. If you choose another extension like .net, .io, or .org, you risk other people typing the wrong address into their web browser. This could end up driving traffic to a competitor or even a business completely unrelated to the services you provide.

6. Make Sure It’s Available
Unfortunately, anyone can buy a domain name, whether they run a business related to the name or not. This means the name you’re considering might not be available, and if it’s not available, you won’t be able to use it. 

Do your due diligence and make sure the names you’re considering haven’t been purchased by someone else. If they have and the site is defunct or hasn’t been built, you may be able to contact the owner and purchase it from them. Keep in mind that there are people who make a living selling domain names that they own to business owners, so you may have to pay a hefty price. 

7. Keep It True to Your Brand
Your domain name should have a clear association with your business. This is why many business owners choose to use their company’s names or variations thereof when choosing a domain name. If your business’s name is too long, you may be able to shorten it or simplify your domain name by choosing something like [city]+[the core service you provide].com. Use your imagination and don’t be afraid to get creative. Spoiler alert: The team at Denver Website Designs may be able to help you come up with a name.

8. Brainstorm With a Domain Name Generator
If you’re feeling completely stumped, use technology to your advantage and get inspiration from a domain name generator. These generators let you generate dozens of ideas based on keywords that you enter into the tool. Many of these generators can also tell you if the domain name is available, too. 

9. Make It Timeless
As your business grows, you may end up adding new services or products to your lineup. Make sure your domain name will stay relevant as your offerings change. Rather than making your domain name highlight the types of products you offer, choose a name that is more general and can accommodate any new changes as they happen.

10. Consider Buying Variations of Your Domain Name
Once you choose a domain name, you may want to buy variations of that name to prevent competitors from potentially stealing traffic from your site. Variations may include misspellings of your domain name or your domain name with a different extension like .net, .org, or .io. You don’t have to host sites on these domains. You just need to own them so competitors can’t buy them.

Choosing a Domain Name Is an Important Part of Creating a New Site
Your domain name is essential for building your online presence. Once you have a name in mind, you’ll be ready to work with a Denver website designer to create your site and get things off the ground. If you’re ready to take the next step toward building your online presence, Denver Website Designs can help. Contact us today to learn more.
Go Back