Your domain name is an essential part, not only of of your web presence but also your business! If your business is strictly virtual, then It’s just as important as a proper sign is for a brick and mortar based business.
Without a domain name, you’ll find your web site is living at a jumble of numbers known as your IP address such as 219.153.281.172
Your domain name is the part after the www. and the includes the .com, .net, .org or the .biz at the end.
To choose a great domain name, remember it should:
- Describes your business and what it does.
- Is easy to remember
- Is easy to spell
NOTE: When I registered my domain name, way back in 1998, the proper spelling of my business name (Virtual Impacts) was taken by a web design shop in Texas. Several years later, the “proper” spelling became available and I GRABBED it and pointed it to my site because I was tired of spelling my domain name out for clients over the phone.
So as you choose your domain name, remember that if you choose a non “hooked on phonics” way to spell your domain name – then plan on spelling it out over and over both over the phone and in any radio or television ads you may run later.
The domain name not only helps human visitors find your web site easily, it also helps the search engines index your site. If you have a domain name with the word “marketing” in it, you’ll get “points” for that term with the search engines. Of course, there are a LOT of other factors that go into getting good search engine ranking results, but a domain name with a valuable keyword is a GREAT start towards great SERP (Search Engine Result Page).
Try to avoid hyphens if at all possible when choosing your main domain name. If you’re having trouble finding a great name, try adding a simple letter “a” to the beginning such as “Agreatdomainname.com”. Another option is to add your location to your domain name choice.
If you find the domain name of your dreams, be sure to snatch up all the extensions you can afford. There’s nothing worse than having a competitor snatch up the .biz or .net version of your domain name. It’s a small investment for the security it offers your business. You should also register your domain name for as long as you can afford. Many registrars offer significant discounts for registering your domain name for 5 or 10 years. Registering your great domain name for a long period of time means you don’t have to worry about losing your domain name because you’ve overlooked an expiration notice.
One final note, you can point more than one domain at the same web site. That means, if you find two versions of your domain name available, be sure to pick up both of them!
Really smart marketers will pick up common misspellings of their name as well. If your domain name uses the word “entrepreneur” be sure to pick up the common misspelling, “entreprenuer” as well. Both domain names can point to the same web site, but this way a typo won’t keep clients from finding you.