How a great domain name will improve your branding efforts

Credibility and creativity, for starters. The right domain name helps you stand out, tells people who you are, and adds legitimacy to your cause. We asked Ashley Forker, Marketing Director at Name.com, to give us the domain download.

How To Find A Domain Name? First, look to your brand.

Too Expensive? Already Taken? Cyberspace is cutthroat. One Elevated Third client has been trying the secure their company’s name domain for over 12 months.

First and foremost, figure out who you are and what you are trying to say. Chances are, once you’ve settled on a domain name, it’ll be taken. To avoid this, try making up words, like Google or Starbucks. But if your company already exists and has a name that is already in use, consider your brand. What do you sell, offer, or promote? What language is associated with the product and how might you creatively use it as a domain? Set up a brainstorm session with your company. Keep it simple, but more importantly, aligned with your brand.

Example of URL

Until Early 2012, the project management company Basecamp used BaseCampHQ.com as its domain name because Basecamp.com was not available at the time.

Be Thoughtfully Concise

The average premium dot.com English word domain is 5.9 characters long and the top 100,000 websites worldwide have an average of 9 characters. Consider a short domain name with memorable words that support your brand--one to two words is a good benchmark. Long domains are difficult for visitors to remember (and spell). So keep it short, sweet and spectacular.

Consider The gTLD revolution

You know .com, .net, and .org-- those guys have been around since the 80s. But it’s a whole new world in cyberspace these days. Now, there are hundreds of domain endings to choose from when creating a URL. From .SOCIAL to .ROCKS, you can stand out in a flashy new way. Though it is good to remember that 75 percent of people will assume your domain ends with .com. The technical transition to gTLDs has been made but the psychological will take a few years.

Stand out in a flashy way

Don’t Spell Trouble

A domain name that requires constant correction or explanation is disastrous. Avoid hyphens, numbers, capitalization, and overly specific abbreviations. Take the radio test. How does your domain name sound out loud? Also, be sure to scrutinize spelling on the page. EnjoySpain.com and EnjoysPain.com have the same spelling, but very different meanings. Check out these examples and, while you're laughing, remember that you don't want to make these kind of mistakes!

Example of bad URL "Masterbaitonline.com"

Example of bad URL "Penisisland.net"

The Bottom Line...

Branding and usability are king. Domain names that include target keywords marginally increased CTR, according to google studies. But, if people cannot easily remember your domain or it does not mesh with your brand, you're dead in the water. A good domain name will set you up for success, and improve your digital strategy, while a bad one will leave you lost in internet oblivion. So...no pressure. Get going and make a bad-a$% domain name for yourself!

Head on over to Name.com and let those domain rockstars help you get started today!

Name.com