You have a great business idea and you want your domain name to tell it all! So, if you are selling pens, you don’t want people to confuse you with someone coming from the land with a strange name like www.penisland.com! Or, if you are a therapist, would you like to be listed of the www.therapiestfinder.com?
Don’t be fooled, sometimes marketing masterminds are behind these “silly” domain names as they get a whole lot of attention. On the other hand, people sometimes just don’t think through. There are several lists of the world’s worst domains, and some of these collected really good attention. Here is a list of 30 “worst” domains to look and learn.
If you’re not so keen to provocative promotion, and you want your business and yourself to be recognizable by relevant and professional domain name, you should reconsider following pieces of advice on how to choose domain name.
1. Keep it short
You’ll find this one a lot when someone is advising you on the domain, but the reality is that, if you want a short and real word domain name, it is probably already taken. Should you give up? Of course not – if you have a great business idea and domain name is taken, check out is it live website or domain is just parked? In most of the cases, you will find out that there is no website behind taken domain and if you can find whois.com contact for the name you love you can always give your offer (maybe you’ll be surprised with a YES).
Another option is to buy the same domain name but different suffix (out of a list of TLD, if available like NET or ORG). It can easily happen that the owner of the COM domain will contact you and offer COM domain for a reasonable price.
2. .COM above others
We already talked a little bit on suffixes, but let’s mention it again. Stick to the common TLDs (Top Level Domains) like .COM, .NET, .ORG, but especially .COM and do some Geo-Targeting in Google Webmaster Tools (or geo-target different language/country folders in case you have more than one territory/language to target). Why .COM? Well, let’s forget all SEO and Google preferences, and focus on the customer. They love it and they expect you to have a COM domain! Just in case you run a local business and your customers are around you, it can be a good thing to use local TLD (country domains). But, even in that case, reserve a COM if it is free, who knows, maybe you’ll go global one day.
There are as well some local TLD that gained huge global popularity due to its attractiveness, the best example is .ME which gives a lot of opportunities to be attractive like www.about.me, www.join.me, etc.
3. Be recognizable, relate your business and/or activities with the domain name
This is not related only to your domain, this need to be one of the main points of your marketing strategy when you create a business plan.
- What will I do, what will I call my business/organization, does it make sense?
- Is it related, is it already taken online, is there a Trade Name free or already registered?
- Is it already linked and recognizable in some other industry or it brings more attention to competitors?
- How can I use my business name and domain name in promotional activities?
- Will it fit to other medias, does it sound good in other media?
- Can I, in the future, create some CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) under that name or it will not be suitable?
To summarize this point, don’t think about your domain or your business name separately from the rest of the business planning. Include it in the base of your strategy and business model instead.
4. Propper use of keywords
In case you have a local service business, it’s sometimes good to use the keyword, even if it is not the shortest solution. For example, if you are selling organic fruits, and your offline shop name in London is Gertruda’s shop, I would recommend getting that keyword if possible. Like www.OrganicFruits.TLD or www.OrganicFruitsLondon.TLD and even more geo-specific. Just as you would look in the Google when searching to buy some organic fruits in your neighborhood. Using shop name as a domain www.Gertrudasshop.TLD you will have much more SEO and Ads expenses and efforts that with the keyword domain.
It’s important to say that keywords in the domain name don’t have that much influence on the search engine (due to high misuse), but… You want your potential customer to give an idea what is your local shop selling, so use it for that.
5. Make it poetic!
I am not kidding, make it sound like you want to say it again just to fill your mouth with it. Don’t call your business ILAJSIST (I Love Army Jackets So I Sell Them), it’s just wrong. This is not a tattoo to be unique and understandable only to you and your emo girlfriend (seriously, she’s still emo in her thirties?)
Be creative, but don’t “overdo it” with creativity. Once the site is on, your business idea, strategy and quality content will bring people to you. If it does not happen, blame the domain.