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Beginners Quick Guide to choosing a Domain Name for your Website

 

When you are starting a business or expanding to new markets, it is essential to do so with today’s modern Internet in mind. The Web can serve as a very effective advertising medium for your products and or services, and has the potential to reach more consumers than any other medium. If your business is entirely web-based, its presence, and its name, is of the highest importance. Use the Beginners Guide to Choosing a Domain Name as a check list. 

 

  • On the web you have the potential to reach potential clients all over the world, so you will need to compare business names in a much greater geographic area to avoid the potential for confusion and trademark infringement.
  • Once you come up with a few ideas for business names, consider what your domain name could be. The closer it is to the actual name of your business, products, or services, the more likely your customers will find you.
  • Although using your actual business name or some variation thereof will attract existing customers or potential customers who have already heard about your business, using a product or service descriptor, like window-washing.com, may more effectively attract new or potential customers.
  • Domain names must be registered using an on-line accredited registration service. if you are new to registering a domain name, don’t go it alone Contact Liz for help, or you’ll probably end up paying for things you don’t need! A high number of popular domain name registrars have a few sales tricks that can be confusing as you proceed through the registration process, as do most domain registrars!
  • Domain names cannot be issued to more than one person or business, so if someone else has already registered your idea, you will have to come up with a new one.
  • Consider possible mistakes that potential customers could make when typing in your web address. If mistakes are likely, consider simplifying the name, or perhaps registering multiple names so that even if a common mistake is made, the user will get to your site.
  • Although domain names are available with a variety of suffixes – the letters that follows the period (.) after your chosen name – the one that most people are used to is .com, or .com.au for Australian websites, so it may be best to use those domain extension letters, rather than an alternative like .net, to attract as many visitors as possible to your website.
  • The .com or .com.au suffix can be used for commercial and personal sites; .net is recommended for companies involved in Internet infrastructure; and .org is recommended for non-profit companies.
  • For all of those suffixes, only letters, numbers, and hyphens can be part of the domain name, but the name cannot begin or end with a hyphen.
  • Using any of those three suffixes, the name is limited to sixty-three characters not including the suffix, but some web browsers, email programs, and other applications may not support anything over twenty-six characters in length, so it may be best to keep the name short.
  • Domain names should follow the same general rules as business names. Try to keep it the name you choose easy to remember, and most importantly choose a name that is easy to spell.
  • The wisest choices are usually the same name as your existing business or product name, alternatively if you are starting up, choose a catchy name that is highly likely to appeal to your target audience, not necessarily a name that you personally, might be emotionally attached to. A simple example would be “Fred Parker’s Florist”, obviously a name that Fred Parker likes! however this isn’t going to be popular with international buyers who want to send flowers across the globe! On the other hand a name like “Flowers Senders” is quite catchy, easily remembered, and sounds like a well established franchise chain that’s been around for donkeys years, and probably has. You get the idea!