Domain name is the first impression of your business upon the audience. As the old maxim goes – ‘The first impression is the last impression’, make sure your first one is a good one by choosing a catchy yet simple domain name.
According to the ICANN report, there are in all 1541 top-level domain names, which signify that you have a bunch of options in choosing the domain name. But it also means more confusion while engaging in the process. So, what possibly is a way out of this cobweb of selecting an ideal domain name? Well, here is how you must go about it:
Pick up the coziest nook in your house, take a piece of paper or sit in front of a whiteboard and start with your domain name-hunting exertion. Set the target of creating at least 20 domain names for your business. It might seem difficult in the beginning but once you are at it, host of ideas will start knocking at your door.
You can either create a unique name or try using something that exactly presents your business idea. Look out for the popular keywords and try to adjust them in name. Scribble all the names that you can come up with on the paper for now, you can always remove them later.
2. Modify the List
Once you’re done with the healthy brainstorming exercise, review the list. It may happen, that your most preferred names start sounding less relevant and vice versa. Just strike out those names and continue adding more.
- Below are few ways to stumble upon some attractive domain names.
- Come up with a unique word. Try building a new word like Google, Bing, etc. did. Look out for synonyms. Check out the websites that provide synonyms for words relating to your key business ideas.
- Try domain name generator tool. There are many websites which help you to construct distinctive domain names using your existing ideas and keywords.
You may come up with multifarious new names. Don’t fret! Longer the list, more will be the options.
3. Get on with Shortlisting
You must have succeeded in constructing at least 25 domain names. Now is the time of thoroughly reviewing and abbreviating your list. Cut off the names that are tricky, ambiguous or lengthy. The best domain name for your new site is the one that incorporates no hyphens, numbers or special characters. Ensure that the names you shortlist are free from all such obstacles that hinder simplicity and motivate confusion.
Make sure the names are precise and shortlisted by keeping in mind the long-term planning of business. For instance, if you are planning to deal in automatic cars for now, then selecting the domain name AutomaticCars.ca, will sound appealing. But what happens when you think of expanding your capacity to introduce manual cars? Hence, it is better to register multiple domains like Carsbuysell.ca and FinestCars.ca, in the beginning itself. Who knows about their availability in future?
4. Don’t stop there
One of the major constraints in the process of selecting domain name is finding name that is available. There are several websites which allow you to check availability of the domain name. Start by checking all the options from your filtered list.
Now, what if some of your preferred options are taken? Get creative! You can either add suffix or prefix in the name or choose other domain extensions like .org, .net, etc. which are equivalent substitute to .com. Although, if you wish to stick with the unavailable name, then dig a little deeper to find about its owner, domain status and other related details and approach him/her for the same. But if it exceeds your budget, without any second thought strike it off your list!
5. Test the Chosen Ones
It is time to test the chosen names. So, think of at least 3 close friends or relatives and instead of writing lengthy emails, pick your phone and call them right away. Repeat the domain names that you have shortlisted and ask them to spell each. If they aren’t able to spell, you know where the name stands.
Don’t hesitate to modify the list on basis of the feedback you receive. The ultimate goal is to make sure the name is simple, easy to spell and difficult to forget. It may happen that many options get rejected at this stage. Just strike them off and find better options.
6. Availability on Social Media Platforms
Before moving forward with the process of registering the domain name, it is better to decide upon the name for your social media channels. There are plenty of websites that enable you to check availability of name across all social media platforms. It is all right if you don’t find the same name. It isn’t necessary to keep the names verbatim but is something worth thinking about for branding purpose.
7. Avoid Trademark Problems
The most important thing is to ensure that your chosen names do not breach the trademark laws of an existing company. It might lead you to incur heavy cost and create a negative impression of your business in the market. For instance, the case of micros0ft.com. The domain name micros0ft.com was registered by Zero Micro Software with a zero in place of ‘o’. Same was protested by Microsoft leading to the suspension of registration.
Hence, it is important to check the trademark registered for the name, before securing it. You can also consider hiring an attorney for same.
8. Marry the Name
Congratulations for reaching this far. It is finally time to get the domain name. Once you register the name, it is going to stay with you for as long as you decide to continue with your business. Hence, it is similar to marrying the domain name. So, go on and register the domain or buy the domain from domainbrothers.com and build your website.
The domain name you select is the basis of website you develop. It will widely impact your business, so make sure it is chosen by keeping every intricate detail in mind. The process might appear exhausting initially, but once you begin you will realize it only takes a couple of dedicated hours to finalize the name. Investing a little more time in giving a careful thought on the name will save you from a lot of future troubles.