|Domain Name Choice
Before buying your domain name, give some thought to the followng:-
1) If possible use your sites name as the basis of your domain
name e.g www.discountdomainsuk.com for Discount Domains UK.
This might seem common sense but not every site follows the
convention. If you use your name in your URL it will be much
easier for your customers to find you.
2) Generic names – if you can register a generic domain such
as toys.com that's great, but most of these have already gone.
Also getting ranked in the search engines is likely to be harder.
Selected a domain closer to your market segment will cut down
the competition. E.g toyplanes.com
3) Hyphenated Names – Its easy to forget the hyphen! Which is
the problem, particularly if your customer remembers your name
but not your URL. Though on a positive note hyphenated names
are less likely to be registered already.
4) If the .com or .co.uk extension is not available then consider
the alternative TLD ( Top level domain types) such as .net or
.biz. If your domain name has already been registered then approach
the owner and ask if they'll sell. They may accept a £100. If
you ask, they can only say no.
5) Plurals. Very often a domain name will be free in the plural
but not in the singular form. It's a personal choice, but if
your prefered choice of domain name is not available you might
6) Short or Long domains – A short domain name is more memorable,
but less likely to be available. A longer domain is harder to
remember, but can contain more keywords which is important as
some of the search engines, use keywords in a domain name as
part of the search algorithm.
7) Which Top Level Domain Type - .com, .co.uk , .net etc This
is a question I am often asked. There is no evidence that any
domain name type is given preference by the search engines.
However some search engines such as Google, have local searches
e.g www.google.co.uk which do select local content. Customer
often get re-assurance from seeing a local TLD as they know
they are dealing with a local company etc. You can, of course,
register all of them!
8) Variations – If your prefered domain name is not available
then its always worth trying a prefix my e.g mydomains.com or
suffix e.g domains4U.com etc
Clare Lawrence is CEO of Discount Domains Ltd – A leading UK
provider of Domain name registration and Web Hosting services.