The Right Domain Name
A rose by another name would smell as sweet. Perhaps Shakespeare was right when it came to roses but in the digital age the value of the names means a lot as evidenced by domain names that can make or mar a start-up idea. Getting the right name for the business is a great start as it gives a rallying point for the entrepreneurs to attract investors as well as talent. And then the customers.
Having worked on websites for many newly established business I find that giving due thought to an appropriate name for a company is the beginning of a great future. Just look at domains that have become household names viz Google, Uber, Zomato, and you will realize what I am talking about.
Ideally a domain name must be reserved as soon as you decide the name of your company. At times the company name may have to be reconsidered if an a matching domain name is not available. The scarcity of available domain names with the extension .com is becoming a huge constraint for finding a domain name that matches your company or suits your product or service.
While the name of the company, product or service has several meanings, you need to keep just one consideration while deciding a domain name. The domain must be easy to recall.
A few things to make the domain name easy to recall
- As short as possible
- Easy to communicate verbally
- Easy to Spell
- Right extension
- Capture the essence
The shorter the name the faster it is to read. It is also occupies lesser space when printed on office stationery or promotional material. Try to use abbreviations or acronymns may help, but these too have to be standard. For example a Systems can be shortened to sys or a company to co. Using non-standard abbreviations is a bad idea.
The domain name must be easy to pronounce, as you may be giving the name out on the phone or in a face-to-face meeting. Research shows that easy to pronounce names are more likable besides being easy to recall. When using acronyms ensure that they are easy on the tongue.
Use the correct English spelling making it easier to recall. When people type a domain name that they heard about, they use the actual spelling of the word. The growing unavailability of domain is forcing folks to alter the spelling which may make it difficult to recall correctly. For example using Xact instead of Exact or emqube instead of mcube makes it a tad difficult to reproduce.
The internet etiquette demands that you use the right extension. In other words, do not use extensions reserved for education, organizations (.edu, .org, .net ) if your desired domain name is not available as a .com extension. Inappropriate use of extension will result in frustrating your visitor as they will by default assume a .com. However the plethora of domain extensions that are available today is making it necessary for domain owners to publicize their domain extension more prominently.
And most importantly capture the essence of your business in your domain. While most will use their company name, use of key service or product in your domain name is good for SEO of your site, and will improve your google search ranking.
Pay attention to coining the correct domain name before jumping to register it. Once the domain gets out in public, it may be difficult to change in all the places it has been propagated digitally or in print. Also, once indexed by search engines, the domain may lose its rank if you change it repeatedly.
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