If you think about your company name as the starting point of your brand building and identity, the domain name is its natural extension. It’s one of the first things many of your clients will get in contact with. So, it is important to make it a part of your marketing strategy. Used right, it’s a marketing tool with a lot of potential, so it is imperative to know the dos and don’ts of domain naming.
What domain name should be:
Searchable – with the right keywords, it helps you maximize your SEO potential. Do your research and find the one that best describes your business.
Short – long names may give a better description, but the chance of misspelling or mistyping increases. Try to use one or two words.
Memorable – Your clients shouldn’t have to think twice when they type your web page address. Avoid mixing several similar words in the domain name.
Cross-cultural – in today’s global market, check if the word or words you chose have funny or embarrassing meanings in other languages. This is especially important if you plan to expand beyond your home market.
What to avoid:
Generic or established brand names – show your unique value. You are not another online store or app startup. Your brand and domain name should never be mixed up with another one.
Text speak – it’s a bad idea to use “bst” instead of “best” or “yr” instead of “your” when creating a domain name. It may be misspelled and send your potential customers to another address. It also may make clients question your professionalism.
What to consider:
Buy all extensions (especially top-level domains, aka TLDs) – It helps you establish control over your brand and offers various ways to incorporate them into a marketing strategy. At least try to get a hold of one TLD and a country-specific one.
Easy to type – test your domain name to see how difficult it is to type it with one hand. Also, check if it’s easy to type it on the phone.
Extend your domain – this is something to consider if your primary choice for a domain name is not available. Avoid long keywords as they may break the short rule mentioned above and hinder your marketing.
Now that you’ve mastered it, here are some things to consider when using a domain name for marketing purposes:
Pick the right extension
Today, you do not have to rely on .com if you believe another extension suits your business and brand better. Using .tech is getting popular with startups and companies that like to focus on technology. If your business is done through a personal blog or webpage, think about using the .me domain. It offers creative ways to present your company and make you stand out in the crowd.
Is anybody home?
Your domain name should be easy to find via all methods. With the expansion of voice search, a lot of potential customers are going to rely on Cortana or Siri. Help them find you. Test your domain name by trying voice search yourself and see if it can be improved.
Why not both?
To quote that old meme, you can have more than one domain. If you are preparing a campaign that is going to be launched soon – another domain may boost your traffic. Domain should be about specific actions that will help you expand sales of your services and products. Do not go into overkill mode with too many, as your customers may feel lost. The key is to remain focused.
Remember the basics
Do not forget the website itself. Even the best domain names with serious marketing potential may underperform if the landing page is not aligned with it. User experience on the page should be slick and smooth, with a clear call to actions and easy navigation. Email is also important. Building a brand is about building credibility first. Make sure to create and use emails that have your domain name instead of private email providers. Customers will take you more seriously with mail with your company’s domain. The name itself will be more present in various media such as business cards (printed or digital) and social media.