What is it?
A domain name is just like a street address, it is a unique identifier that can help people find you or your business online.
How to choose the right domain name
Your domain name should be simple to write and simple to say.
Imagine that you are meeting someone for the first time and you get talking about your website. They decide that they want to find out more about your business and ask for your website address. Having an address that is easy to say and remember is essential, just try saying these out loud:
Now, these examples are taken to the extreme but it highlights three important things to consider:
- Keep it simple: abbreviation can sometimes be ok but not if you have many repeating characters or if it’s difficult to remember. “How many ‘b’s was that again?”
- Keep it short: your business cards have to fit in your pocket so you don’t have a lot of room to fit long addresses. “Oh yeah, my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org”
- Keep it clear: don’t make it hard for people to figure out your address and consider how easily most people would type it. “I typed in www.thebestdoctorforyou.com but I couldn’t find your website”
GOOD domain names
Sometimes you may be lucky and find that your name or business name is available as a website domain. However, this may not always be the case and instead, you may be required to get a little creative.
If the domain name you want isn’t available try:
- Choosing an alternate domain extension, such as ‘.co.uk’ instead of ‘.com’
- Removing superfluous words such as ‘the’ or ‘and’.
- Adding a dash (‘-‘) between words – but only if your URL is 3 words or less.
We recommend creating a domain name shortlist and ranking your choices based on the following criteria:
- Is it easy to say?
- Is it easy to type?
- Is it easy to remember?
- Is it too similar to other domain names?
Once you have your shortlist you can then see which of the domains are available and ultimately decide which one will be the winner.
Need some help deciding? As part of our free community, you can share your domain name options and receive valuable feedback from our members.