Your domain name is your online identity. It is the first thing people know about your website and therefore it is the first thing people know about you as an online presence.

Like it or not, before someone even reaches your home page, they have already made a judgment about you based on your domain name. Your domain name makes a first impression on business cards and promotional materials, well before someone types it into their internet browser. Your domain name is a subset of your URL, and is the most important part.

How do you guarantee you have an excellent domain name? For starters, make sure there are no misspellings. Try to get a domain name that ends in the most common suffix: “.com”. If your first choice for a domain name is taken, try different combination of phrases that relate to your business. Avoid dashes, special characters, and unusual spellings. If you are still unable to get a decent domain name with a .com ending, the suffix “.net” is an acceptable alternative. Make sure your intended domain name will not become easily confused with another website.

The best domain names are short and sweet. Do your best to keep your domain name to one to three words. Many people can lose patience with long and unwieldy domain names.

Short domain names are also memorable, which is critical to long-term success. If a customer can’t recall your domain name, you can bet they won’t visit your website. Keep your domain name easy to spell and easy to remember.

A great way to make your domain name successful is to make sure it is descriptive of your business. If someone is using an online search engine, they will type in what they are looking for. If your company offers this service/product, but does not include it in the domain name, your company may be overlooked.

If possible, have a unique domain name, rather than through another website. A unique domain name would be www.[yourname].com. A sub domain name would look like this: www.[othercompany].[yourname].com. In the murky world of the internet, trust is everything, and having a unique domain name makes you appear more trustworthy. As an added bonus, online search engines give preference to websites with unique domain names. Search engines also prefer domain names that contain words or phrases that people search for, rather than a jumble of abbreviations or nonsense words.

John Bradley Jackson
Entrepreneur, Professor, Author
Deja New Marketing
© Copyright 2012

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