A domain is your website address, and it’s used to be identified within the Domain Name System (DNS) of the internet. In simple terms, it’s the URL name of your website, and this name is critically important for your company branding. Your website domain will be published in all your print materials, referenced in digital media channels and shared audibly through conversation and audio channels. Your domain name needs to be both read and listened to well.
Here are some tips for coming up with a good domain name:
Keep it Short and Easy to Spell
Most likely, people are going to be typing your domain name into their address bar on their computer, tablet and phone. Don’t have too many characters or words that are hard to spell that will make the user say to themselves, “Gosh, this is too difficult to type”. The average reading level is 8th grade and below, and you can imply that spelling skills are at this same level. Keep words simple.
Don’t Mimic Texting
Don’t get creative in your domain name by making it look like a creative text message. An example of this may look like: healthyfood4you.com. From an auditory perspective, the “4” will be interpreted as “for.” So listeners will type “for” in the URL by impulse which will bring up false results or error. Though we live in a world of texts, it’s best to avoid this for domain names.
Don’t Use Hyphens
It’s a habit to type domain names as one word or phrase without hyphens, so keep to this rule. In addition, you cannot listen to hyphenation when it’s being verbalized. Hyphenation may happen for the name of individual web pages, but it’s not best practice for your branded domain.
Make it Memorable
Don’t make your domain hard to remember. If someone sees or hears your domain, it’s the best position to have your domain be a name that can easily be recalled. Having recall after all is important to having a successful brand.
Have it Match Your Brand
It should go without saying, but ensure your domain matches the name of your company or personal brand. For example, if your company is called “Best Cookie Bakery”, don’t have your domain name be totally different or leave out key information, like in example bestbakery.com. What kind of bakery? Using bestcookiebakery.com or cookiebakery.com would be more identifiable. The domain name and company name need to clearly look related.
Purchasing a domain is an easy process, but choosing the right name requires strategic thought. Test your domain name selection with other people in your target audience to see if they like it and can easily recall it by voice and spelling. And when you think of the right name, go purchase it before someone else does!