A website is a major step in creating brand awareness and visibility. It establishes your identity for search engines, sure, but it’s much more important for creating both clients and potential partnerships. What people don’t often know is how critical choosing a proper domain name can be when it comes to carving out your own bit of digital real estate. And whether you like it or not, the moment you choose your domain name is the moment your customers start associating your domain to your real name, and to your business.
It’s all interconnected.
Unfortunately, what I see more often than not is people picking names that 1) don’t mean anything in reference to their business and 2) are not flattering in the slightest.
Think about it this way; if you happened to own a pet store and you named your domain, www.fluffykittytickles.com, then well, maybe that would work for you just fine; even though it’s a bit silly. But if you’re a real estate agent, and you name your website www.dougloveshousesandponies.com, you aren’t doing yourself any favors.
Remember, your domain name is going to be used both on and offline. It’ll be on your printed marketing materials, your business cards, will most likely be your email address, and it will be one of the first pieces of contact information you give out to prospective clients.
Here are a handful of tips to get you started on choosing the right domain name:
Short and Sweet
Being creative is great, but no matter how well your business helps someone, if the domain is hard to remember, or worse yet hard to spell, people won’t pass it along to their friends.
Avoiding the Generic
Remember how I mentioned being creative is great? That still applies. If your domain name is too generic or too similar to another site, you’ll bury yourself in search engine purgatory. That and people won’t be inspired to click your site.
Avoid Unnecessary Punctuation
Steer clear of hyphens (-), underscores (_) and numbers in your domain names. People won’t remember them, they’re hard to type, and you’ll lose valuable leads. On that, stick to a domain name with a .com if at all possible.