Let’s make a few things clear from the get go! The basics of branding are pretty simple. A memorable domain name is usually short, unique, simple to slip into conversations and easy to pronounce. However, the choices are plenty when you start thinking about the emotional connect of the domain name with the target audience. You end up spoilt for choice. The branding can be a suggestive, descriptive, acronym or even misspelled.
You now have various options, and one thing to consider is how to purchase domain names online? Having the right domain is of utmost importance for the target audience as well as search ranking results on Google and Yahoo. Here are a few pointers on what to keep in mind before purchasing a domain name.
Research and homework
Researching and doing the homework is the surest way to success. And experts say on a little bit of research goes a long way. You can browse the available domain names using a keyword search through various online domain name search tools. You can find competitor domains can by using the internet. One thing to keep in mind is the fact that popular domains might have a public resale, so researching on when the domain was last sold, for how much and information regarding the web hosting broker are great ideas.
Ease of typing and remembering
Would you want to punch in a domain address in your browser with a number of symbols and characters that have no connection with your brand or services? Or a domain name with a series of numbers? Chances are you would like to avoid all of the above case scenarios. Optimize the site for the search engines and choose a short tail keyword as a domain name which will be easy to type and remember. It increases the value of the domain name and increased usage in conversations and discussions.
A general rule of thumb is never to use slang or derogatory terms. Instead, you can pick a name that will stay faithful to the brand and meaningful to the customers even after a decade. Research on the internet for words that might be offensive in a foreign language or to an ethnic community. Act local but think global so that even the non-native speakers can understand your domain name.
A short domain
This one is a no-brainer. A long domain name is much harder to remember this has a lesser recall value. Long domains can be misspelled as well. However, most of the single word domains are unavailable for years now, but you can still try adding an adjective or verb before your brand name and test for the availability of the variations.
The extension of the domain name matters. You might end up buying a domain name that ends with .net, .org or.info but that in turn adds to the workload. Now you have to make sure people remember that your site extension is different than 90% of the internet. Most consumers assume the domain name ends with a .com! Avoid extensions that will make it hard for your potential customers to remember.
Buying a trademarked domain is a strict no! Not only will the people get confused and lead to lower ratings and zero online presence, but you are also liable to be criminally prosecuted. There will be legal hassles to fight as complaints can and will be filed against you in terms of creative licensing. You can browse for trademarked domain names at the U.S. trademarks site at uspto.gov.
Avoiding similar names
Domain names that are similar to an existing site also create confusion among potential buyers. The same applies while purchasing a domain name identical to one that has already been taken. Avoiding plurals, hyphenated phrase and prepositioned words are essential. Conversely, you can invest into buying all of the variations yourself so that if a user types any one of the varieties, he/she will be re-directed to your main landing page.
Most of the SEO optimized domain names have a hyphen between words. Hyphenation makes a domain name easier to read for both customers and search engines. Avoid more than three hyphens which allow for a shorter domain name.
Numbers should generally be avoided because while speaking out the domain name one is never sure whether the name has digits or the word! It is quite a tricky problem to face. If you need to use such a domain name you should buy both the number as well as the digit to avoid confusion and misdirection of the internet traffic. At times the digit zero “0” might be confused with the alphabet “O.”
Use your social media accounts to check for the availability of the domain name. With online marketing playing a huge role it is convenient to search for a domain name in use through YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest and Tumblr.
Ensure all the steps before making the right purchase.