Because your choice of domain name significantly affects SEO performance, you owe it to yourself to choose one that best reflects the business of the company. For starters, choose a domain name that is short, descriptive, suits the common domain name extensions (for example, .com, .biz, .com.au or .co.nz etc.), includes a keyword, and is easy to spell. All these factors help with brand name recall.
Below are other pointers that should help narrow down your domain name selection.
Short domain name
This is clear enough. A short and simple domain name is so much easier to remember and there is less room for error. Think of all the global brands that are seven letters or shorter: for example, IBM, Coke, Xerox, Avon, Exxon, Google etc.
Descriptive domain name
It is sound business and good PR to choose a name that accurately describes what the website is about. For example, if you were selling shoes, allshoes.com makes sense. “Pizza Hut” is an even better example of a company name that incorporates a product keyword.
Good web extension
Try a .com before any other domain extension. Since .com is the most common and is still the most popular domain extension used, it is a good idea to try and find an available .com domain name first. If all the .com names you want are already taken, try .net, .org, and a few others before moving on to the newer types.
Include a keyword in your name
Try and include at least one of your keywords in your domain name, as this can help increase your website’s search engine rankings. When someone searches on a keyword phrase that includes your domain name, your website has a good chance of being in page one of the results list. Case in point: Roget’s exists in www.thesaurus.com; clearly, they own the search right away.
Easy to spell
Domain names that need to be written down or require reference to an encyclopaedia to look up the correct spelling should be replaced. And double letters or dashes in the domain name invite misspelling. If your corporate name suffers from these weaknesses, use your top-selling brand. The Marketing Department has covered all these bases before investing marketing dollars.
Generic or exclusive?
The answer is pretty straightforward: adopt a generic name if you can file a trademark registration or copyright on it. The best idea is to buy generic domain names that are related to your specific business category and redirect visitors to your URL.
So, what’s in a name?
Since domain names do have a bearing on SEO performance, it bears serious thought. The next time you ask, “what’s in a name?” realize that it reflects the potential of each and every product in your stable of brands. If you have a business and haven’t registered your domain name yet, it’s a good idea to do so now. Domain names are getting snatched up quickly, as this infographic shows: What comes first – your domain name or business name?