If you’re registering a domain name for the first time, here’s some ideas for what you should be thinking about.
If Possible Go With .com
There are a lot of different extensions you can choose from, i.e. .com, .net, .org, .info, .co, .biz.
Or you have country specific extensions, i.e. .co.uk, .us, .com.au, .ca, .in, .jp
Always try to go with a .com
It’s the most popular, the most memorable and the extension people will try first when they type your domain name into their browser.
If the .com is already taken, you still have a few options, see “What To Do If The Domain You Want Is Already Taken” below.
Protect Your Privacy
When you register your domain name, you need to give details which will identify you as the owner. This will include your name, home or company address, phone number and email address.
Among other things, this stops anyone else from being able to claim that they own your domain.
But this information gets made available to the public and anyone will have access to it.
This might not be something you want, for instance, if you’re registering a domain name and can only use your house address, you might want to keep that private.
That’s where “Domain Privacy” comes in.
When registering your domain, you have the option to hide this information by purchasing “Domain Privacy”.
It normally costs an extra £0.75 per month, but in my book is well worth it. In my case I normally use this, as I use my home address, but the choice is yours.
If you’re a business and can use your business address, save yourself some money and avoid this!
Don’t Use Numbers
Avoid having numbers in the domain, it always add a layer of confusion.
Was that website, season2.com or seasontwo.com?
If you must have a number, i.e. your business name has a number in it, then buy both versions of the domain.
You can then use “domain forwarding”, to forward one of the domains to the other. That way, if someone does type in seasontwo.com, it will be automatically forwarded to season2.com or vice versa.
Protect Your Brand
If you do register a .com, think about getting the .net and .org as well.
This stops your competitors from registering them and causing confusing with your visitors.
I’ve done that for this site. I’ve also forwarded the domains, so if a visitor goes to www.createmarketgrow.org or www.createmarketgrow.net, they’ll get sent to this site, www.createmarketgrow.com.
Short and Memorable
Seems obvious I know, but too many websites seem to miss this.
The shorter your domain name is, the easier it is to type out and the less chance your visitors will make a mistake.
Don’t Use Hyphens
It just looks cheap.
How many big brands do you know that have hyphens in their domain?
Don’t do it!
Descriptive Or Keyword Or Branded
There are three main types of domains that people register.
You might pick any of these three, or a combination, but hopefully this will give you some ideas when you’re brainstorming a name.
Descriptive – This will have a word or words that make it easy for potential visitors to know what your site’s about.
So for instance you might go with cooking master class.com
Keyword – This will have a particular term (keyword) in your domain, that you want to target within search engines.
So for instance you might be trying to rank for the term, how to cook, you would go with, how to cook.com or how to cook guide.com
Side Note: There was a time when having the keyword in your domain name had a big impact on how your site ranked for that term in search engines, i.e. (how to cook).
However in 2012, Google made big changes to how they decide what ranks within their search engine and this is now much less effective.
Branded – This can be a shorter name, or something that’s more memorable and fun.
So for instance, something like, facebook.com or google.com
What To Do If The Domain You Want Is Already Taken
If for instance you wanted, cooking guide.com but it was already taken,
- Think of adding a prefix to the domain,
- simple cooking guide.com
- ultimate cooking guide.com
- Think of adding a suffix to the domain,
- cooking guide online.com
- cooking guide tips.com
- Pick another domain!
Finally – Just Pick Something
The biggest mistake I see people making – is spending forever trying to think up the perfect domain name.
Let me say this, perfect doesn’t exist.
Take a look at this websites name.
When I was coming up with ideas, I wanted something that,
- Would be memorable
- Would give people an idea of what the sites about
- Was a .com
- But I wanted the .net and .org to be available too
- And I wanted it to be short
In my opinion, the name doesn’t describe what this sites about, at least not as much as I would have liked.
It’s also longer then I wanted.
But overall I’m still happy with it.
People have a rough idea of what the sites about from the name create market grow.com. Plus the more I grow this site and build a brand around it, the more the name will make sense and stick in peoples mind.
So don’t get too bogged down, pick something and go with it.
Next Steps – See How To Register A Domain Name
Are you ready to register a domain name?