Your domain name will mean the difference between shooting to stardom and sinking into obscurity, so it’s no wonder that people can spend the better part of a year agonizing over their decision. A good domain name sparks interest in your website, and it also increases the chances of having your visitors send friends to your website.
Choosing a domain name is all about balance. You want a domain name that helps you attract visitors, but you also don’t want to spend so much time thinking about it that you never get to do other important things for your website, such as, for example, actually creating your website. (By the way, if you ever get confused about the difference between a domain and a website, read our handy guide here!)
Here are six things you can do to quickly choose a domain name that your visitors will love!
Six strategies to pick the best domain name:
1. Open the door with keywords
Keywords are the words and phrases your potential customers are likely to type into their search engines when they’re looking for a website like yours. For instance, if you sell bedazzled car tyres, a good domain name for you might be something like www.bedazzledtyres.com.
Adding keywords to your domain name is an easy way to rank higher in search results, which increases the visibility of your website.
2. Add some zing by rhyming
Once you’ve figured out some keywords (or if you’ve decided that keywords aren’t important for your domain name), add a bit of pizzazz to your domain name by making it sound nice. One way to do this is to rhyme. People love rhyming. It’s musical and helps words roll off the tongue. The easier it is to say your domain, the more likely it is that your visitors will recommend it to their friends.
3. Be the bomb with “.com”
When it comes to domain extensions, this isn’t the time for fancy tricks. People trust the “.com” extension. They’ll forgive an outlandish domain name as long as it has a nice, sensible “.com” attached to it. Unless you’re trying to hide your domain name, stick to the more popular extensions, like “.com”.
4. If you want them to find you, your name should match what you do
Your domain name should be evocative of your website and your services. When people see what you do, and they look at your domain name, they should say, “Oh, that makes sense.” They should not feel forced to go on a year-long journey trying to find the meaning of your domain name.
Having a domain name that’s aligned with your brand and with the service you provide will also make it easier for people to remember your domain name.
5. Make it dance right off the tongue
People will be typing your domain name, so why does it matter what it sounds like? It matters for two reasons:
- If your domain is fun to say, people are more likely to recommend it to their friends.
- A fun domain name is more memorable than a boring one.
So, if you want to hit the domain name jackpot, try to come up with one that’s fun to say. How, you ask? It’s time to dust off your old high school Literature notes. You need literary devices. Alliteration and onomatopoeia are particularly effective.
In case you don’t remember what any of those are, alliteration involves the repetition of sounds. Most tongue twisters are alliterations, e.g., “She sells seashells by the seashore”. Usually, you’ll want to avoid getting your visitors tongue-tied, but if your demographic is the kind that would be highly amused by that, go ahead and tie those tongues!
It might take a few tries to get this right, so we don’t suggest trying to think of alliterative names right off the bat. It might help to come up with a few evocative names first, then figure out how to make those names alliterative. For instance, if you sell clumsy bees, you might be tempted to call your website www.clumsybees.com. With a bit of extra thought, however, you’ll come up with www.bumblingbees.com. (The wordplay makes this extra delicious.)
Onomatopoeia are your sound words. Your crash! Bang! Splash! etc. If you can find a way to work one of these words into your domain name, your name will crackle and pop!
6. Keep it short and sweet
A good domain name isn’t just easy to say. It’s also easy to type. That means no unnecessary numbers and symbols, and no long, drawn out names, either.
The perfect domain name should be typable in a matter of seconds, so visitors can quickly get to your website.
A good domain name can’t be underestimated, because it helps establish your brand right from the start.
Even so, most of us don’t have months to sit around trying to come up with a clever domain name. To choose a domain name that aligns with your brand, gets your website visible in search results, and makes people want to recommend your website to anyone who will listen, be sure to follow this simple, six-step checklist!