How to choose a domain name

How to choose a domain name depends on several factors according to your needs.

In our series 0f three posts we’re going to tell you how to choose a domain name. If your are building a business website, organisation or even a personal blog, your domain becomes your identity.

First of all, let’s decide what you MUST HAVE:

  1. Do you want your domain name to be memorable?
  2. Do you want it to be easy to spell, thus avoiding mistakes?
  3. Do you want your domain name to be found easily in search engines?
  4. Does your domain name have to describe your product or service?
  5. Does your domain name have to describe your established brand name?
  6. Does your domain name occur often in some form in your website texts?
  7. Is your main audience going to be local, or global?
  8. Is your website representing an organisation, IT service, personal blog, other?

These questions may give you a combination of answers that complicate how to choose your domain name. If all you wanted was a memorable domain name without concern about other factors, you could probably find one such as “salmipear” At the time of writing, every single TLD was available for that name No doubt not for long.  The name is a bit weird and memorable, because it joins two well known items in combination. Ok, it’s may be memorable, but how useful is it?

Unless you are providing a new and fabulous product or service to do with Salami and pear. And you were flooding the media with news and press releases about your Salami Pear business no-one is looking for that on the internet and your website with that name is simply never going to be looked for or found.

You may love your unique quirky domain name and that’s fine, but unless you can attach some public significance and interest to the name, it will remain as we call it a ‘vanity name’.

Take our domain name “gloucestershirewebdesigns” as an example of a domain name. It ticks many of the important boxes from our list of must have’s above.

Let’s score up to ten point for each of the eight questions above. A maximum of 80 points total

  1. Memorable-5
  2. Easily spelled-3
  3. Found in searches-10
  4. Descriptive-10
  5. Branding- 10
  6. In texts- 10
  7. Local or global- 8
  8. Type of business-7

We get a total of 68. We could improve that if Gloucestershire was a shorter word, easier to spell and we chose a TLD like .web, or .IT.

So that brings us onto the TLD part or Top Level Domain part of your domain name.  This is known as the extension. We’ll take a deeper look at this in part 2 ‘How to Choose a domain name’

Posted in ,