The first step in establishing an online business is to find the best available domain name to purchase. In addition to being your online address, domains can also significantly impact your overall marketing success including SEO, PPC and direct website traffic, therefore one should be very carefully selected.
Here are some suggestions for finding and choosing the best available domain name.
Step 1: Choose a domain name that is easy to remember
Catchy. Short. Memorable. These are the characteristics of a high quality domain name. If the domain is not easy to spell or remember, chances are that you will miss out on a lot of web traffic as many internet users type domains directly into their browsers to pull up websites. Easy to recall means easy traffic to your site.
Step 2: Choose a keyword-rich domain name
Domains containing keywords tend to perform very well in search engine results. Try to incorporate one of your target keywords into your domain name for an SEO boost. Also, a recent study indicates that domains with keywords enjoy a higher click through rate and lower costs in PPC ads. A keyword-rich domain can be an investment that pays off many times over.
Step 3: Consider including geo-terms in your domain name
Just like including a keyword in your domain helps your website perform better in organic and paid search results, including a location-based term in your domain increases the chance that you will appear in search results including the local qualifier. Googling “boston pizza”, for example, brings up the domain bostonpizza.com as the #1 organic search result.
Step 4: Make sure there’s no copyright infringement
Avoid disappointment and potential monetary penalties from the get go– check the United States Patent and Trademark Office (http://www.uspto.gov/) to make sure no one else owns the rights to your preferred domain name.
Step 5: Search for your name!
Use a domain finder tool like the one here at BuyDomains.com. You can narrow your search by keyword, by domain extension, by location, and other parameters to find the domain that best suits you. The beauty of buying a domain is that it is a one time investment that is then yours for life (as long as you keep your registration active).
If you find that your perfect domain name is taken, consider looking for an alternate name that is similar or again search BuyDomains.com for keywords that are similar.
Step 6: Choose a .com Domain
.com will probably always be the first domain extension people type in when searching directly for a domain. It’s the original domain for commercial websites and is the most widely used and registered.
Step 7: Buy multiple domain extensions – protect your brand
If resources allow, it is important to purchase other extensions of your domain (.net, .org, etc.) to protect your brand. This way you own the online real estate associated with your brand/company and you can point all the different extensions right back to the site of your main domain.