Choosing the perfect domain name for your website and blog

How to choose a Domain Name for your website: A Checklist

A specialised guide for the time when selecting a domain appears harder than running an actual business!

‘How to choose the right domain name’ – immediately sounds like a classic cliché topic. It’s been chewed upon so much that it has already started losing its value. Just copy the phrase and put it on the Google search box. A bunch of search results will fall down your browser screen like the fall of the classic solitaire cards upon winning. 

However, even if there is tons of material available already, the process of finding the right domain name is  still unclear. 
So, we decided to create a one-stop and fully exhaustive check-list raisonné to solve your problem.

1. Keep it Simple, Silly!

The domain name is the face of any company. It is the first direct point of interaction with your visitors. Don’t make it too hard to comprehend. 

Keep it short and easy to

  • pronounce
  • remember
  • type
  • trust
  • understand
  • comprehend  

Avoid:

  • numbers 
  • hyphens 
  • underscores
  • special characters

Have you ever heard of the Radio test? Let’s say your domain name is announced on the Radio. How many people around the world, from all the countries, will be able to pronounce and remember it? For example, if a German vendor who sells cosmetics decides to register his domain with glcklichefrauen.com (happywomen.com). How many non-german people would be able to pronounce it? (Keep aside remembering it!)

Look at these funny examples:

http://www.theofficialabsolutelongestdomainnameregisteredontheworldwideweb.international/ 

http://comcomcomcomcomcomcomcomcomcomcomcomcomcomcomcomcomcomcomcomcom.com/  

2. Wise Usage of Keywords

‘Does the domain name affect the SEO of the website?’, this has been a topic of debate for a long time. However, it is always better to keep SEO in mind before registering a domain name.  As you go online, you will come across the word ‘Keywords’ now and then. Keywords are the words that people use to search for their queries online. It adds value to your SEO strategy. 

3. Avoid EMDs

In 2012, Google floated this update in the form of a filter to prevent poor quality sites from ranking because they have keywords in them. Spammers used to use such EMDs for driving traffic by putting poor content on their website. 

If we talk about its current status, it is not completely irrelevant. As the blog ‘Are Exact Match Domains Still Relevant?’ aptly says, Google likes an EMD unless it has spammy content. But, if you are vying to buy an EMD only, you will have to do a lot of research and work hard to earn a higher trust rank with excellent content. 

Let’s prate on the topic just a little more to justify it… 

The exact-match domains are often assumed to be related to the spammy websites. EMDs, as the name suggests, use the exact words that people are searching on the browser. Would you trust a domain name such as www.besttravelblog.com?

Look at the following search results:

Why should you avoid choosing EMD for the perfect domain name

No domain name has the words ‘best’ ‘travel’ or ‘blog’ in it. Okay. So, what happened to ‘Use The Keywords’? Keywords are the words that help Google crawler to ‘find’ the pages. Sure that helps! But, if your content quality is good and your website is SEO optimised, it can still rank better even if you have not used a direct keyword in the domain name. 

If you only use keywords, it will be an EMD. For example, cheap flight tickets. But, you can embed a keyword in the domain like the 5th result has done  it – traveltriangle.com. 

P.S.: Check the URLs. That’s the secret sauce! 

4. Make sure that the words are not creating something funny.

There are many jokes and memes already popular about the domain names that have turned embarrassing. Examples, 

www.itscrap.com (IT Scrap)

www.bendover.com (Ben Dover)

www.teacherstalking.org (Teachers talking)

5. Your domain should brand itself without your help.

Your domain name should be creative and unique enough to reflect your brand. Whenever you see the word ‘Google’ or even the simple ‘G’ with the color code of Red-Yellow-Green-Blue, you will immediately know what it is. Well, Google is so huge that it has become a verb now! But, you get the point, right? Brands like Facebook, Google, HubSpot, etc. are also popular for their unique and original name. 

6. Make it intuitive.

Don’t make people guess what is behind the URL like www.sayyestoexpert.com. Which field are you talking about? If you are into plumbing services, use domains like plumbingexperts.com or plumberforyou.com, which immediately delineate what you do.  

7. Go for the right extension

www.rockinfreakshow.org – no way! It doesn’t sound like an NPO or NGO at all. 

www.pasta.monster ? Really? What’s the point? 

www.luniversitedefrance.au We know you are a scam already! 

Every extension has some protocols ascribed to it. 

For example, 

Domain ExtensionUsage
.comCommercial
.eduEducational
.netNetwork/Internet
.orgNGO, NPO, Organisations

8. Use the help of domain name generators available online.

There are tons of domain name generators available online. These generators take your query as input and throw a bunch of domain name options after analysing the trending keywords. 

9. Check for the domain twinnies in the market

Let’s take an example. 

  • You want to register a domain ‘Qualispace’ for your restaurant. 
  • But Qualispace.com is already taken. 
  • You registered for Qualispace.org. 
  • But the name ‘Qualispace’ is already famous for Cloud hosting. 
  • Boom – a brand clash!

It affects brand loyalty and brand recognition. Also, it can appear to be a phishing site if the products/services are similar. 

Example, 

www.google.com

www.g00gle.com 

10. Beware of the trademark infringement

Before you register a domain name, search the name on social media to check if any Facebook page, Twitter account, etc. is already active with that name.  Also, you will want to check if the domain name is already trademarked by a party. For this, you can use free trademark checker tools available on the internet.  

11. Have a long-term vision

When you buy a domain, you are paying bucks not only for buying it but also for its hosting and branding. You sell baby clothing now. But, after 5 years, you might want to start a new-mother/pregnancy clothing section. But, you are already famous as www.babyclothes.com. It will be a big hurdle changing and re-branding your already established identity. 

12. Make it quick!

Domain names go fast. You decide a perfect domain name after thorough research and turns out that it is registered with a price tag of INR 1,25,345. Fortunately, regular domains are not as costly. So, grab yours as soon as you think of one! 

Selecting the perfect domain can appear daunting. But, if you follow this checklist, the process will be much easier and unambiguous. 

Click here to quickly reserve your domain before someone buys it!

Shraddha Vedak
Shraddha Vedak serves as a Marketing Specialist at QualiSpace. With a keen interest in Digital Marketing, she handles Public Relations for the company and manages its Online Reputation on the forefront. Having a Degree in Mass Media & Diploma in Marketing, she has also got her hands on Affiliate Marketing and Market Research. With an aim to explore the newer sides of brand promotion, she intends to bridge the gap between the product and sales through creative strategies. Connect with Shraddha on LinkedIn