Starting a new business means a lot of work! And if you think you’ve decided to keep the right name for your startup, think twice! Coz, believe it or not, this shall be the name of your enterprise, your website as well as the brand name that would represent your products on the international scale. A correct domain name can either lift-off your business, or can even make things go downhill – it is that important! No, we don’t want to scare you, instead, we’re here to tell you about a few hacks that can help you with selecting the correct domain name:
Hunt for extensions: The ability to understand the process and the relevance of getting a dot-com domain name is something you can’t afford to ignore! From investors, customers to the credibility of your business – everything lies in the name you choose. With varied domain extensions that have been evolved in these recent times, it is becoming increasingly convenient for everyone to settle for the second or third best like .info .business etc. But that simply won’t do! Put on your thinking cap and the creative process involved is important that can make your brand stand out!
Note that, even if you have to accept a domain name that is not .com – then .net, .org, .io, .website are some of the most looked upon domain names in the world.
Keep an eye on spellings, punctuation, and length: Even small little errors in the spelling of the words can literally break your reputation within seconds since it would decrease all chances of getting discovered and remembered. In this generation of quirky websites and products, and if you’re stuck with a wrong spelling or have it mixed up – then perhaps your business may very well be down the hole, even before it started!
Always remember, the first impression lasts long!
The ‘Keyword’ effect: Experts say that including the right keyword in your domain name can do wonders for your business because of the search rankings, visibility and ease of remembrance it has to offer. But, most of the startups overlook a crucial point in the haste of getting a keyword-based name. Choosing of a keyword that makes perfect sense for your enterprise not only for today, but also for the next five years at least before deciding on something.
Note that these insights shall make your business be the top-of-the-line for the coming years as well. For instance, if you’re starting a startup that is based on publication of newspapers, you may choose something relevant in recent times, but if you are open to expansion and exploring that can lead you to publication of magazines, novels then going for a generic name would be advisable rather than something related to only newspapers. Ask yourself first, then decide it.
Keeping it Real: Using keywords that add a spark to your brand is a preferred way to go about it. But, what about when you’re thinking about starting something that would have its market on an international level and have to compete with the giants? At that time, only originality can work in real-time! That applies to your domain name too. Just like ‘Google’ or ‘Yahoo’ – completely original and out-of-the-box words that redefine the internet these days and has evolved from a brand name to a verb.
Note that, the most crucial part of this is about having fun, getting out of your comfort zone and being creative throughout the entire process. You can use sites like Domain Name Generator to find some of the best domains for your startup. Also maybe the domain name that you choose today, may not be the one you get to keep forever, but you can change and evolve along the way as well!
Sealing it with Copyright and Trademarks: One of the most ignored facts before deciding on a domain name is checking if the same domain name is already trademarked by other business enterprises. If that’s the case, then it is not a very good idea to go with the same, right? Coz, then it won’t fetch you any visibility and instead promote their business even if they are known by a different name in real-time!
Note that, the same goes for niche-based websites. For instance, if you’re planning to start your own review website for a certain director’s movies, you should never settle for a domain name as:
“abcdirectornamemoviereviews .com” without the prior permission. It can straight lead you to all sorts of legal, financial and ownership trouble. It’s better to place your foot on the traded ground rather than unknown paths.
Navigating the world of domain names can be a daunting task if you're not up to speed on how to get one. With countless caveats and hosting companies out there, it's easy to be overwhelmed or worse, make a mistake that could ultimately cripple your business.
Consider these do's and don'ts from small-business owners and experts to help secure your company's domain name.
Do: Include a location or keywords in your domain name, if you can.
If your business focuses on a geographic region, try to put the location into the name of your domain, says Jean Bedord, a Silicon Valley-based search consultant and author of the book I've Got a Domain Name--Now What??? When Mikalai Krivenko needed a domain for his painting business in Hoboken, N.J., in 2009, his son Yuriy, a Jersey City, N.J.-based search-optimization specialist, suggested he put "Hoboken" in the name. For $11, Krivenko bought hobokenpainter.com, which shows up at the top of keyword searches that include "Hoboken" and "painter." Whether it's location, or what your company does, Krivenko advises: "Put the most important keyword for your industry in the domain name.”
Choosing a right domain name is the first important step to a successful planning of an online business. Domain name is just like an internet identity for your online business which reflects who you are, what you do and what service / product do you offer to the online shoppers. The reason domain name is seen as an “internet identity” is because no two domain names can be same and while choosing a web address that is unique to you is a chance for you to select the best possible domain name that describes your online business (or e-Commerce store).
Many times, business owners do not put much effort in choosing a right domain name for their business which can be as devastating as choosing a wrong physical location for your business. Domain name is just like a virtual address for your online store so you should invest same amount of time, thought process, planning and effort to select a right web address just like how you would select a prime physical location for your business where shoppers can find you easily. Yes, it can be a little tedious process to come up with a good unique domain name that has not been taken yet but it is not that difficult if you think strategically.
There are 2 main strategies to choose a right domain name for your e-Commerce business:
- Brand centric domain names
Brand centric domain names
- Keyword rich domain names
Brand centric domain names are usually for businesses that have already established their name (or company) in the market. You can make most out of brand centric domain names when your customers know about you as a business and see you as a brand. Some of the examples of brand centric domain names are: Amazon.com, itunes.com and nike.com etc. If we take an example of Nike, we all know their brand is represented by a tag line “Just do it”. So, for Nike it makes sense to buy a domain name “Justdoit.com” as they are known by this tag line and customers relate it with Nike since they are aware of the established brand name. Currently “Justdoit.com” redirects the users to “nike.com”.
Just because it makes more sense for already established business to go with brand centric domain names, it does not mean that this type of domain name is not for new online businesses. Online businesses that are new in the e-Commerce industry and want to go in the route where they want customers to remember them down the line with a brand name should also choose a brand centric domain name. It is very important to choose a brand name that reflects the type of business you do.