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December 2020

How to Pick a Good Domain Name

This is the first step that you’ll need to take when it comes to making your mark online: purchasing a domain name. Take a moment, think about what you want your domain name to say about your business. Here’s are some tips on how to pick a good domain name.

What is a Domain Name?

Your domain name is your website’s home address on the Internet. It’s the one that people type in when they want to go to your site. Our domain is: www.chewiemedia.com - and while it’s not the only thing that affects your site’s success, there are tons of reasons it’s important to choose a domain name carefully:

  • Domain names have an impact on Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
  • Changing your domain name after creating your site can lead to time-consuming complications.
  • A unique, memorable name is more likely to stick with visitors and encourage them to return.
  • Your domain name can immediately give new visitors (or search engine users) an idea of what your site is all about.

Quite often, people will just pick the name of their business, as we did. Names have a power to them – this is as true for a website as for anything else. Picking the right domain name should therefore be a careful process, and you’ll want to consider all of your options before settling on a winner.

Choose one or more keywords that represent your site

There are a lot of ways to start generating ideas for a domain name. You can simply base your site’s domain on your own name, or on your existing business. However, a key ingredient of a truly effective domain name is a strong keyword.  Using a descriptor keyword allows the visitor to know at a glance what it is you do, and what they can expect out of your site.

Check for synonyms to your domain name words.

So, you have a few keyword options, it’s time to brainstorm ideas for your domain name. You can actually do this without any tools, but it’s easier to use a tool.  You can use a domain name generator to create different options for you of possible domain names.  The benefit of these tools is that they can also tell you which ones are already taken.  Take your chosen keywords, and try putting synonyms to those keywords into the tool as well – this is a good way to find a domain name that sounds great and is easy to remember.

Select the best domain name based on some simple criteria

At this point, you’re ready to narrow down your shortlist and finish out the process of how to choose a domain name. Part of this process is subjective – after all, it’s important to choose a domain name you like. However, there are also some simple criteria you can use to make the decision easier.

For best results, you’ll want to pick a domain name that is:

  • Concise and clear. Long and confusing names are harder to remember and easier to mistype.
  • Creative and memorable. The more unique you can make your domain name (while keeping it clear and concise), the more memorable it will be.
  • Easy to read and pronounce. Avoid numbers and special characters because they’re confusing when spoken aloud. It’s also worth asking your friends to pronounce it as well, so you avoid accidentally registering a domain that seems to be completely different from what you’re anticipating. At best, it can be confusing to somebody, and at worst you could find that your domain pronounces something offensive or opposite to what you are trying to get across.
  • The domain end, or the top level domain. Simply put, this is the part at the end – .com, .org, .net, and so on. For many sites, .com is the best choice, since it’s what most visitors will expect and is easiest to remember. However, it’s getting harder and harder to find quality .com domain names, and users are becoming more accustomed to other extensions. So if you absolutely love a non-.com name, go ahead and buy it.  The only thing to be careful with is TLDs that apply to a specific region (like .co.uk or .ca). Google uses these to help geotarget websites, so only pick those extensions if you really do want Google to geotarget your site.

It’s time to register your domain!

I suggest going to a company such as GoDaddy – they provide an easy way to register and it’s difficult to mess up their domain purchasing process.  Just remember to buy the domain and if you’re going with a Chewie Media hosting package, you can skip those extra add-ons and we’ll take care of the rest for you.

Do you need a hand getting your domain name linked to your hosting environment? We make it easy. With our Chewie Hosting packages starting from only $10 a month, we can have your site live with high level security, maintenance and backups. Contact us today to get started on your journey.

 

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About the Author

We’re Passionate About Our Business and What We Do

Katie McKay

Katie McKay

Business Operations

Katie McKay excels at her role as business developer at Chewie Media Inc. Her passion for growing companies has not just seen Chewie Media grow in recent years, but all her clients’ businesses as well. She’s the main point of contact for those clients, and loves helping them achieve their goals daily. Katie has a keen eye for what works and what gets in the way and has translated that to developing meaningful user experiences on websites that save time, increase productivity, and expand the reach of her clients. Through websites, SEO, SEM, and hosting, Katie is able to offer her clients a full range of solutions.

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