There are 86,262,204 registered domains in the US alone. That means you need to get the domain name right when you’re a small business trying to build a web presence.
How to Choose a Domain Name
Here’s 10 tips on how to choose a domain name for your SMB.
Consider Social Media
Consistent branding is the name of the game and your domain name is part of that. You’ll want that reach to extend into social media.
“Consider a unique domain name that allows you to grab the Facebook, Instagram and Twitter handles,” writes Jason Sanio. He’s the Head of Marketing at Google Domains.
Get to The Point
You want your customers to remember your domain name. That’s why you need to keep it as short as possible. It’s the best way to be able to share it with people. Keep in mind there are hundreds of millions of domains registered. Shortening up on some ideas might get you registered quicker.
Look at The New TLDS
Top-level domains (TLDs) are the part that follows after the name. Some examples include .com and .org.
“There are now hundreds of new TLDs, so you can choose a domain ending that matches your business,” Sanio writes. “ Google Domains supports over 200 new TLDs so you can get a .coffee, .band, .agency, .design or more!”
Use TLDs for Brands
Yaniv Masjedi, CMO at Nextiva , supplies an end run when your company name is taken.
“For a company, if [your brand name].com is already taken, try an alternative TLD before modifying your company’s name,” he says in an email.
He also says that businesses should avoid hyphens in the domain name were ever possible.
Focus on Your Target Market
You need to make sure that your domain is helping your target market find your website. Allan Pollett CEO of Digital Instinct, supplies a few ways to do that.
“Think about services keywords and/or location within the domain name,” he says. “Local domains like .ca will help if you are trying to get better rankings. These work when you are trying to rank within a specific country on Google.”
Pollett says it’s important to think about long-term resell possibilities of your domain. If you use your name, it might be harder to unload when you’re selling the brand.
Use an Available Domain Name for Your Business
If you’re just starting out, you might not be completely sold on your business name.
Warren Diggles is the owner of Diggles Creative, LLC. He has a good suggestion for switching the order when you’re looking for a domain name.
He says it might be easier to buy one and then change your small businesses name to suit. Diggles concedes this can be a lot of work if you been operating for some time.
Self Employed? Use Your Name
It might be hard to resell a domain with your name attached to it. However, it’s the right choice for some self-employed people. This works well if you provide professional services like dentists and lawyers. Your name becomes part of the brand.
Buy Some Mistakes
Ryan Dunn is the Web Developer forDuckpin. He suggests that you can buy a domain that’s got your named misspelled on the cheap. Then, you can use it to redirect to your main website.
“Some alternative domains will trigger certain spam filters, like .zip or .biz
8,” he writes. “A domain that you really want might be taken. Reach out to the owner and they might be willing to negotiate a reasonable price.”
Buy More Than One Domain
Finally, it’s a good idea to buy more than one domain to point to the same small business. There are several reasons like covering all the common misspellings people use in a search.