Choose a New Domain Name in 5 Quick Steps

4 minute read

The perfect domain name is out there waiting for you to find it—you just need a guide! As a small business owner, a tactical approach to choosing a new domain will work best. Pick the right name, and you’ll secure more traffic, more customers, and more sales.

 

According to Verisign, the first quarter of 2020 closed with 160.7 million new .com and .net domain name registrations. If your new website is going to stand out and have an original presence on the internet, your priority should be unearthing a mind-blowing domain name.

The choice you make will directly impact your sales performance and growth potential as you start selling online. Your domain name is the first thing your customer sees, which influences your brand reputation. Plus, it helps define who you are and what you do online!

 

It’s 2020, and “any old web address” is no longer good enough.  You can’t just rely on a domain name generator. You will want to invest time and effort into finding the right domain for your business after learning these five quick guiding steps. 

 

(Use our domain name tool to test different names and word combinations. We also give you a list of recommended domains that are currently available.)

 

Woman in a coffee shop

Step 1: Easy to Remember (Short)

 

Your customers see hundreds of domain names every day, and many of them aren’t memorable at all. The first big step for your small business is to find a domain name that is easy to remember. 

 

As a rule, keep your domain name as short as possible and never combine more than three words. Consider elements like spelling, how it sounds, what it looks like, and if it’s noteworthy. In this instance, simplicity is your friend, so never use odd numbers, hyphens, or long-word combos.

 

By using simple, short domain names, you will never lose potential traffic. You also won’t have to buy misspellings or alternatives to protect your brand because no-one will ever make that mistake—yours is already the easiest, best version. 

 

  • Uber.com, Facebook.com, TikTok.com, and Netflix.com (all short and highly memorable)

 

Step 2: Super Relevant (Descriptive)

 

For maximum relevance, you will want to explore descriptive word combinations. If you can create a domain name that describes your products or services—your customers will know from your domain what it is you do, and that has value in the search results.

 

In step two, focus on testing imaginative word combinations. Check on your immediate competitors and your local market. You don’t want your domain to be anything close to what is out there. For immediate credibility choose a .com or a .net extension, if possible. 

 

Make sure no one is going to confuse your website name with someone else’s. When a customer reads your domain name, it should be descriptive enough to invite them to explore your site in greater detail. Examples are Learntopaint.com, awesomeSEO.com, or Catcomics.net. 

 

Not great with word combos? These generators will help

 

Step 3: Highly Brandable (Unique)

 

In step three, you should consider making your domain name brandable. A unique domain like Pixar.com, for example, belongs exclusively to that company. Pixar doesn’t mean anything outside of its brand meaning—and that’s valuable for reputation, search, and resale. 

 

The best online brands use this convention to protect their marketing efforts. Every promotion, advertising dollar, or marketing campaign you sink money into is guaranteed to go to your website and nowhere else. A strong brand will help you escalate your online growth as you start to sell.

 

If you can infuse your brand with descriptive meaning, even better—Reddit.com, for example, is a unique brand created from what you do on the site: read things. Play with terms and see what you can create for your own small business. 

 

Man making woodfired pizza at a food truck

Step 4: Consider Keyword Inclusions (Local SEO)

 

Even though keywords in your domain name are no longer a ranking factor, they can still influence customers from the search results. It’s especially true if you include local keywords to help people from your nearby area find your company. 

 

Pizzaperfect.com might not be available, but Miamipizza.com could be wide open. Explore local area names and experiment with location-based domains. Niche keywords can also be useful, so come up with a list of keywords directly related to your company, and test combinations to discover hidden gems.

 

Whatever you do, don’t add a long string of keywords as your domain name. It doesn’t work, it won’t help you rank, and it discredits your brand. Customers see sites like these as spammy, and if you ever want to sell down the line, you may have trouble doing so. 

 

Step 5: Check for Available Social Media Handles (Consistency)

 

The final step before your purchase is to narrow your list of domain names to five strong contenders. Take these names and check if their social media handles are available. When you have a consistent brand with matching social handles—it lends trust, authority, and credibility to you from day one. 

 

It’s also a good idea to check that another person or entity hasn’t trademarked your domain name selections. Do a final search of your names to see what keyword competition you’ll face and who might be using a similar brand or idea in your niche.

 

If you’re lucky, your domain name will become the name of your online business. If you already have a name, consider getting a different extension to trade as you are. 

 

Remember these five quick steps when choosing your domain name—make it memorable, keep it relevant, brand yourself, use niche or local keywords, and check on your social handles before purchase. If this goes as planned, you’ll land on a fantastic website address! 

 

Find your perfect domain name here.