Do A Trademark Search
Copyright law is notoriously hard to define. As a result, if your domain name includes even part of a word trademarked by another organization, you could find yourself facing a legal battle.
You should be particularly cautious if using a made-up word, as its impossible to use the defense that its a commonly used word or phrase. Visit knowem.com and run a trademark search before committing to a name. Youll discover if its in use as a trademark or domain name, or if it is common on social media.
Branded Or Exact Match
Exact match domain Keywords in the domain name that matched search terms ensured a fairly large amount of traffic to a website. At present EMD hold no weight for rankings anymore. However, this practice died down. Its best to do some research and some brainstorming to find your brand name.
You dont really want a URL that doesnt properly describe what you do or what you want to say. Brandable, meaning whats popular, what works, what sums up your business and what gives the right impression. And you need to remember that using hyphens and numbers in your domain are a real problem because they dont make something sound like a brand. So, make it sound good, and easily understood.
Rule #2 Dont Use A Hyphen
So you want getcheapinsurance.com but its already taken. Sure, you can be creative and purchase, get-cheap-insurance.com but this is a mistake. Again, people will visit your competitors by mistake or think you went out of business.
Hyphenated domain names also look less legitimate and established and youll spend the rest of your career pointing out to people that they need to type in the hyphens.
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List Out 10 Example Blogs You Enjoy
Pick your favorite 10 or so blogs and write down their domain names.
If you dont read many blogs yet, find a list of blogs in your general topic areaand see which domain names jump out as being particularly interesting.
- What can you learn from these sites?
- Are there any common words that could spark some inspiration for a word you may want to incorporate into your own domain name?
- Do these examples help you feel a strong conviction about ways youll want to position your own domain name?
Maybe theres a mix of different types of domain names in your example pool.
You could have some blogs that are personal brands and others that domain names clearly designed to preview the topics at-hand.
Perhaps the domain names youre seeing are fairly short and easy to remember.
Maybe some were tricky to spell, forcing you to look them up first before simply navigating there.
Either way, you should be able to walk away from this activity with a lesson or two about what you do and dont like in a domain name within your niche.
How To Register Your Domain Name
With over 370 million domain registrations as of September 2020 and a 3% year-over-year growth rate, you want to lock in your domain fast.
By using the Domain Name Generator, you can find and register a domain name in just a few clicks. This will save you time getting your store live, so you can start selling faster.
If youre not ready to register your domain name yet, thats OK. You can use an auto-generated free domain name: yourstore.myshopify.com. That way, you can design your Shopify store and buy the best domain name for you when youre ready.
Read more: The Essential Shopify Store Launch Checklist
Recommended Reading: How To Connect A Domain To Shopify
S To Buying A Domain Name
Lets assume you have a list of catchy, memorable, branded, and short domain names, and youre ready to buy. Here are the steps for buying and registering your domain name.
A. Choose a Reliable Domain Registrar
To get a domain name, you should first find a registrar that is accredited with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers , which is the nonprofit organization responsible for coordinating all of the numerical spaces on the internet. VCCL Hosting offers domains governed by ICANN.
B. Find a Domain Availability Checker Tool
The next step in your journey is a domain name search and should involve a domain availability checking tool. VCCL Hostings domain availability checker tool can be found on the domains page.
C. Choose the Best Domain Name Option
When youre checking for available domain names, youll often find that your first, second, and tenth choices are already taken. Some of the different approaches you can take when this happens are:
- Keep searching. Let your creative juices flow, and continue to search until you find something you love or at least like.
- Choose another extension. If the .com isnt available and youre set on a certain name, consider the .NET or .org if you think it will work.
- Reach out to the owner. Maybe the domain is already owned, but its not being put to much use. You could reach out to the owner with an offer.
D. Purchase Your Domain Name and Complete Its Registration
E. Verify Ownership of Your New Domain
Try it now!
Rule #1 Buy A Com Only
There are tons of different extensions you can purchase like .ORG, .NET, .BIZ, .CO, .US, .MOBI etc. but I strongly advise against using them because they tend to look less professional and because most people type .COM by habit. Every time that happens:
Read Also: How To Change Your Domain On Shopify
Rule #6 Avoid Using Carrier Brand Names
In addition to being against the agreements of your contract in many cases, creating a domain name that includes the official name of a carrier or carriers you write for can be a big mistake.
It sounds like a good idea because you can gain some of the trust thats associated with those brand names but if you ever want to change carriers youll have to change your website domain name. Also, even if the carrier is okay with your domain name today, they may change policies in the future and tell you to take it down.
Have you ever known an insurance carrier to change marketing policies?
Tips For Choosing A Great Domain Name
1. Keep it simple Avoid adding anything to the name that needs explanation. When you tell someone your website name they should be able to remember it and type it in without asking further questions. Numbers can cause confusion , as can Roman numerals . Can you tell a total stranger your website address without spelling anything or explaining what unusual words mean?
2. Keep it short Keep the site name between 6 and 30 characters. The limit is 63 but that would be impossibly long.
3. Keep it clear Remember that your domain name will be run together with no spaces at all. Ask for objective opinions on whether it is clear what the words actually are. The one advantage of hyphens in domain names is that they separate words very clearly.
You should now have 2 or 3 great choices for domain names all figured out.
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Ensure Your Domain Is Unique
Outside of just being punchy and memorable, your blog domain should be unique. Make sure it represents your brand and content while also standing out from competitors.
For example, HubSpot is certainly unique and comes to mind quickly. It’s easy to type, spell, and pronounce. It might not have succeeded with a more generic name like marketinghub.com, marketingonline.com, or marketinginformation.com. In fact, if you search “marketing,” HubSpot is one of the top options but more generic domain names are nowhere to be found.
Rule #3 Be Careful With Numbers
Insurance4you2day.com might sound cool and easy to you but its not.
What if people spell out the word four instead of using the digit 4? If theres any confusion at all, they wont even make the effort to find you.
Plus it looks more like something a teenager would write in a text message than a professional business.
Unless its really clear, Id stay away from numbers. Marketers have paid millions for 800 numbers that spelled words, not the other way around.
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Numbers And Hyphens In Domain Names: Why You Should Avoid Them
Is it OK to use hyphens in a domain name today?
Hyphens make your website appear sketchy and that can affect your ability to win links.
And destroy your click through rate in SERPs.
Numbers should be avoided too.
When someone hears a domain with numbers, its hard to know if the numbers are numeric or written out as words.
That can cause type in errors, and lost traffic.
Especially if you plan to advertise on radio or podcasts
My advice is to avoid numbers and hyphens entirely.
Research Your Desired Domain Name
Once you pick a good domain name, youll want to check if the domain is already registered. You can use Shopifys Domain Search tool to see a custom domains availability. Another common way to conducting a WHOIS lookup.
Before committing to a domain name, youll want to make sure that no other business is using the same one. There are three ways to check:
- Run a trademark search. Head to USPTO.gov and search the trademark database to see if anyone registered a similar name.
- Check social media. Search Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, and other relevant social media channels to check your names availability. This will come in handy when you go to create your accounts, too.
- Do a Google search. Last but not least, type your desired name into Google to see if anyone is closely tied to your brand.
Also Check: How To Make My Domain Visible On Google
How To Choose A Domain Name: Summary
Domain names are your digital street address. They can significantly shape a visitors perception of your brand.
Unfortunately, most of the one-hit names like Dogs.com were taken up in the early days of the internet. But that doesnt mean you cant find a great domain name for your new website.
Just use these eight tips when youre creating a new domain:
- Make it memorable.
- Keep it mobile-typing friendly.
- Add keywords but only if it makes sense.
- Go for a brandable domain name theyre valuable and easier to land than broad terms.
- Make sure you dont step on anyones registered trademark in the process.
- Choose the appropriate extension. While .com is still at the forefront, the newer and far cheaper extensions are becoming more popular by the day, so they may be worth considering, too.
- Use a domain name tool generator if youre stuck racking your brain for a name.
- Think about jump-starting the process by acquiring an expired or existing domain.
Finding the perfect domain name is a lot like finding the perfect song. What works best for your business and resonates most with users will inevitably change. But following these eight tips, youre sure to have a domain name that stands the test of time.
Simple Tips On How To Choose Perfect Domain Name
Now, apply the same concept in the internet world. If your new website has single or a narrow subject to focus on, it is ideal to add your subject in the domain name. .
Tip 1 : Use KEYWORDS related to your content / business.
Narrowing down the focus keyword is another point. It may not be applicable to all of us but if it is, consider this tip while you do your domain search. If your wesbite for cats is specifically about funny cats, make it clear in your domain name. Eg : funnycatsonline.com, funnycatvideos.com etc.
Tip 2 : Do research on relevant Focus Keywords.
Avoid special characters like underscore, dash & hyphens in your domain name. Eg : funny-catsworld.com, animal_world.com etc. Avoid numbers as well, unless it is relevant to your business.
Tip 3 : Make sure it is SIMPLE. Easy to pronouce, easy to remember and easy to type.
If your target is local audience, specifying it in your domain name will increase the chances of ranking on Google local business.
Tip 4 : Consider including the name of the city, if you run a local business.
You must have heard about domain name extentions .com, .net, .org etc. In this post i have written examples of website with .com extention which is the most popular one. There are country specific extentions like .fr .ch , .in etc whereas .org is often used by NGO and Community websites.
Tip 5 : Use relevant domain name extention if applicable, otherwise try sticking to .com
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Make It Easy To Type And Pronounce
Sure, your blog name is unique, but if no one knows how to pronounce it or type it as a URL, your traffic numbers might suffer as a result.
If a domain name is confusing, it’s more likely that users will have typos and get lost as they try to find your blog. Make it easy for them, and avoid hurting your traffic numbers, by choosing a simple, clear domain name.
Avoid Numbers And Dashes
Unlike a password, your domain name shouldnt be a string of characters that makes sense solely to you. Therefore, refrain from using special characters such as hyphens and numbers. So gr8cakes-4all, for example, would be an especially bad domain name.
Numbers and hyphens are too often confusing and are harder to remember and type. Numbers leave people wondering whether to go for the numeral digit or to spell them out .
Hyphens, on the other hand, are easy to overlook or misplace when typing in the web address and are not immediately within reach on most mobile keyboards. Thus, its best to leave them out of your domain altogether.
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Make Sure Its Easy To Type
Think of some of the most popular websites in the world. What comes to mind?
Google, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Yahoo, CNN
One big thing they have in common is that theyre all easy to spell.
Your visitors should be able to type your domain name without a problem. If you have to explain the spelling more than once for it to be understood, its too complicated!
The last thing you want is for the potential visitors to mistype your domain and end up on a different website!
Heres an easy way to test this
Tell 10 people your potential domain name and ask them to spell it. If more than a few people struggle to spell it, you need to simplify it.