Six Essential Things to Consider When Choosing a Domain Name (YouTube Video)

Choosing a great domain name is no easy task! It is, however, a very very important task, and any time you spend ensuring you get the right one is rarely ever time wasted! But how DO you ensure you get a domain name that doesn’t fall short? One that meets all your needs?

Here’s six things you’ll definitely need to consider:

Six Essential Things to Consider When Choosing a New Domain Name

– (note: video credits to Topher DeRosia – creator of HeroPress)

Video Transcript:

Hi! This is Topher with WinningWP. In this video we’re going to take a look at how to choose a great domain name for a website. There are a wide variety of things that you should be thinking about when choosing a domain name. Before we dive in, I actually want to go over with you the things that we’re going to cover because they’re pretty varied. We’re going to take a look at branding and how your domain name affects it. We’re going to talk about how to narrow down your ideas. We’re also going to discuss what other domains to get besides the one that you end up choosing. We’re going to talk about how to check the domains history to see if anyone’s ever done anything bad with it. And, lastly, we’re going to talk about social media concerns. So let’s get going. First, choose something that fits your brand. We’re looking here at WinningWP and when the site owner was looking to set up WinningWP he wanted to help people do well with WordPress. So he didn’t choose a name like BasketWeaving.com or anything like that. He spent some time thinking through different words and different meanings and came up with WinningWP. The next thing we want to look at is keeping it short, simple, and predictable. WinningWP is easy to say, easy to spell, and easy to understand. It’s also not very long. Next, you really want to get the .com if it’s possible. According to this website, % of websites use .com, but then if possible get .org and .net as well. This website allows you to put in some words and then it gives you some domain name options. As you can see, UnderwaterBasketWeaving.com is not available, but it is available with hyphens. Regardless, all of these break the rules of short, simple, and predictable. There are some short options, but they’re neither simple nor predictable. There are some with new top-level domain names, but none of those are .com, .net, or .org. You also want to make sure that it’s easily understood verbally. Any domain name with an “I” that’s supposed to be pronounced that way is difficult to say. For example IShop.com. Short. Simple. Great, right? But is that “E-Y-E” for glasses or is that a letter “I” for Internet? If you have to explain it, it’s not a good domain name. Another thing that’s very important to do is check the domains history. Just because a domain name is available and you can buy it, does not mean that no one else has ever had it. I’m here at the Wayback Machine at Archive.org/web and if we look up Yahoo.com, you can see traffic and you can see what was on the website at any given time. If we click at on October , you can see that this is what Yahoo looked like. Very plain, very simple, but it looks like Yahoo. What you want to be careful of is buying a domain name that seems great, but the previous owner was a spammer. The domain name is blacklisted — no matter who you are or what you do — and it’s a great deal of work to get un-blacklisted. Now if it’s absolutely the perfect name, it might be worth it to you to spend that time scrubbing its reputation. But, regardless, you should be looking at the history of the domain name. Also, make sure that matching media handles are available. We’re at Twitter and you can search for names. You put the @ sign at the beginning and you can see that for Basket Weaving, they’re actually are a number already taken. If we search for WinningWP, you can see that it’s taken. You should do this for all social networks even if you’re not going to use them so that no one else can grab it and put up information that causes you problems. So look at Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and all of the other social networks that you think will matter. Choose something that fits your brand. Don’t choose an unrelated name. It’ll be confusing to people and they won’t understand. Now, if you already have an established organization or company or something, you’re at a disadvantage here. If the name of your company is already taken by someone else, then you have to work around that somehow. But if you’re starting from scratch and you can make up any name you want, use a thesaurus or NameMesh.com and put in some words that fit your brand and see what’s available. Next, keep it short, simple, and predictable. People want domain names they can remember, that they can type quickly, and that they expect. If you have a car dealership and your domain name is WnderwaterBasketWeaving.com, people be confused. They will not understand. Next, get the .com and then if you can .net and .org. .Com is by far the most common top-level domain and people are simply used to it. That’s one less thing they have to think about. Make sure it’s easily understood verbally. Just like a joke, if you have to explain it, it’s not a very good one. Also, check the domain history. Make sure that a previous owner didn’t do something that would be a black mark on what you’re trying to do. Again, if you already have a company or organization and a domain name that matches your company name has a bad domain history, it might be worth it to you to buy the domain and clean it. It’s a lot of work, but it can be done. Lastly, make sure matching media handles are available. If you have a wonderful website with a clean, awesome domain name and somebody who doesn’t like you sets up a Facebook page to tear you down, then it can really hurt. Aside from that, you want to be using things like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, etc. to communicate with your readers. There are many people who are not going to want to come to your awesome domain name. They want to look you up on Facebook because they trust Facebook so you want to have a good representation there as well. There are many other things to think about when choosing a domain name and, if you’re interested in more information, check out the link in the description below. If you’d like to learn more about WordPress, check out WinningWP.com.

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By WinningWP Editorial

Run by Brin Wilson, WinningWP is an award-winning resource for people who use – you guessed it – WordPress. Follow along on Twitter, Facebook, and/or Google+
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