How To Pick A Website Domain Name

How do you pick a website domain? 

Two words: chat roulette 

Kidding!

YES, finally someone answers all those questions we’ve had over the past two years about domain names and best practices for picking a URL. It’s changed so much because of how competitive search engine results have become.

At one time you could have bought the domain name “www.ReginaWebsites.com” and you’d get all the organic traffic for people search for websites in Regina. Times have changed. You can’t just “get” to the front page by setting up a keyword heavy domain name. Yes there will be exceptions to the rule and if you’re on the front page of Google with very little work it won’t last long.

Make it brand-able and pronounceable

By “Brand-able” Rand’s talking about something that would be seen as a brand to the average person. This is why it valuable to get a third party (hopefully a marketing mind) to look at your options and give you and opinion on it. This is a major decision in the digital world, your website name says a lot about your company, or show people what type of a company you are.

Making it pronounceable is something we normally think of but this can really help you creating an online brand that sticks. Get feedback on your idea, get others to say it and ask them

What the heck is “processing fluency”? 

Great question! As Rand explains in the video, you want to pick a domain name that makes sense to your brain. Something unique, something memorable and something that just rolls off the tongue. If your domain name is too long people don’t have a good chance of remembering it. Try to pick something that’s easy or fun to say.

Do I need industry keywords in my website domain name?

Not anymore. Yes it used to help you out a lot but today you just need something that doesn’t seem spammy and is original. In the pre-2012 Internet era having “Plumbing” in your plumbing website helped a lot. You could game Google a bit just by using your industry specific keywords but for obvious reasons www.ReginaRealEstate.com/real-estate-regina/regina/realtors doesn’t help rank you anymore.

Things to avoid: using numbers and “-“(hyphens)

www.realestate1.com seems a little spammy. So does www.regina-website-design.com. Yuck!

I love the part of the video where Rand says you want a website that seems legit. You know, when showing it to someone for the first time, their reaction will be, mmmmmm looks cool!

Should I use a “.com”, “.ca”, “.org”, “.net” or “.marketing”?

Your decision making should follow this:

  1. mywebsite.com
  2. mywebsite.ca (use your respective country’s name)
  3. Whatever the hell you want.

Try to get the .com first. If you can’t, go with your country code

For the full blog post from Moz check is out here: How to Choose a Domain Name – Whiteboard Friday