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5 ways to choose a good domain name

Putting some thought into choosing your website name is worthwhile because it is the key element for any website. It is your “first impression”, it defines your brand and it has an impact on SEO.

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Use a “.com” extension

Nearly half of the web is used up with “.com” URL extensions. Therefore, it is generally best to follow suit and not break the mould. There are sites that have success with a “.org” or a “.net” so if a “.com” is not available and you are really keen on a certain website name, go for it! Where should you go to purchase a domain name? From a reputable registrar such as names.co.uk.

Short is better than long

The most common name length of websites is 12 characters. Therefore, it’s similar to what URL extensions you should utilise; go for a shorter name, ideally somewhere in the range of 6-14 characters. If it is difficult to find something short, look for something that you can make ‘brandable’.

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Make sure it is easy to type

When you think of websites that you often browse such as Twitter, Google, Facebook, etc., one thing they have in common is that they are easy to spell. The last thing you want is for a visitor to misspell your URL. A good test for a potential website name is to tell a few friends or family the name and ask them to spell it. You will know then if it is suitable or not.

Avoid numbers and hyphens

Hyphens and numbers make it more difficult to spell your website name, so they should be avoided. Imagine YouTube being “You-Tube.com”, for example. With such an ugly name, YouTube’s original growth could have been stifled.

Check that it is not trademarked or in use

Before purchasing a website name, it is good practice to check if the name is available on social media sites. Having the same name over multiple platforms is advised for building a well-established brand. It also builds familiarity between you and your target audience. You do not want the hassle of buying a name that clashes with a trademarked company. Knowem.com is a tool which lets you see if your name is available over 25 social network platforms and if there are any trademarks tied to the name.


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