How to choose a memorable domain name that'll work

Does your domain name pass the billboard test? If your domain name is on an advertising billboard by the side of a busy road, will drivers be able to read, understand and remember your name as they whizz past? Exposure is brief, drivers are hopefully concentrating on the road, and they can’t take notes. This article will give you the top tips on choosing a memorable domain name.

by Meg - 20.01.2014

Tips on choosing a good domain name

It’s getting harder and harder to find a good domain name without spending a fortune. Let’s hope the new domain extensions will create more opportunities. But in the meantime, here are some pointers.

  • Match your brand; this is what people will type into their browser. If you are a start-up and you haven't gone too far down the marketing road, consider changing the name of your website/brand to match an available domain name.
  • Relate to your website content, and if possible the name should be exclusive to your business. If your site name contains an industry related keyword, and you can get a short memorable version which would include both your website name and primary keyword, excellent.
  • Avoid anything that's hard to spell. Numbers can be confusing and hyphens disappear in speech. It should be memorable and easy for word-of-mouth recommendations or when repeated over the phone.
  • Make it short and sweet. Just because you can have up to 63 characters, doesn’t mean you should.
  • Keep it simple, a domain name that requires an explanation is going to be forgotten, misspelt or heard incorrectly.
  • Don’t step on anyone’s toes. It’s important that you don’t infringe anyone’s copyright. Don’t choose a name with brand-related keywords. It’s your responsibility to check this out before registering.

Choosing the right extension

As of April 2013, there were over 100 million registered .COM domain names; it remains the most familiar and the most widely used domain extension. Registering a .COM domain name is still very popular but we have well over 750 alternative domain extensions to choose from. 

  • A couple of years back the .CO domain changed its status from country code to generic, it’s proving to be hugely successful as an alternative to .COM. With your perfect name still available, it’s a great choice. These companies thought so too: American Express – amex.co, Cisco – cis.co, Virgin – virg.co, Donuts – donuts.co, Starbucks – sbux.co, and Twitter – t.co.
  • With the advent of the new domain extensions you can now reduce the competition and market in your own industry. Selling bikes, shoes, pizza? Target your audience and register a new domain extension.
  • Country code domain extensions (ccTLDs) such as .DE, .FR, .CO.UK are excellent for local businesses. If you are a UK based car dealer, a .COM would be unnecessary. Additionally, customers instantly know where you are and are more inclined to trust you.
  • Triumph motorbikes have always been .CO.UK. Despite selling all over the world, part of its success is that it’s recognised as a classic British design. Its choice of extension is part of its marketing plan. Worth considering!

If you have any questions or would like help in choosing your perfect domain name, give us a shout.

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