You’ve taken the plunge and decided to start a small business with the hope of growing it big. It’s a dream many Americans have for dozens of different reasons. It might be that you are simply tired of a nine to five job and want more freedom with your schedule. It could be that you are hoping to leave your children with a family business. Some entrepreneurs start their own business because they want something they can be proud of and talk about with others. One can only say so much about techniques of flipping that burger before there’s just nothing left to say. Owning your own business gives you plenty of conversation startups. It may also be that you just want job security in an ever changing, often tenuous job market.
Whatever the reason is that you want to start your own business, the Internet will play a big part in your success. Choosing the best domain name is a crucial first step in building your online presence, and it isn’t something you’ll want to approach in a nonchalant manner. Think of it as the most important thing you can do for your business. Approached from that perspective, building your domain name should go well.
Why Does the Domain Name Matter So Much?
It’s just a website. Customers are going to click on it, order, and be done. Isn’t the quality of the merchandise or services offered more important? Simply put; no. Think McDonald’s. Millions of Americans recognize the business by the golden arches and flock to the restaurants not because they’re five-star, gourmet, quality burgers, but because it’s familiar. You know what you will get when you walk in the door. The name McDonald’s means something to you, and if you want to go to their website, you will instinctively type in mcdonalds.com because their name is their brand, and their brand is their domain name. It’s all one and the same. That’s the result you’re shooting for when you choose a domain name.
Keep it Simple
Choosing a generic domain name should be the first step in growing your business. A generic name could be something like IceSculptures.com. When a potential client is going to search for an ice sculpture for a wedding or other event, they will likely type “where to buy ice sculptures” into the search engine. Having those keywords in your domain name helps you rank higher. However, something like FrozenArt.com wouldn’t fare as well. It’s unique and catchy, but not many people will type in those specific words when doing a search for ice sculptures.
Use keywords in your domain name, but avoid using a domain name that has lots of keywords stuffed into it and would match exactly to someone’s search. There are domain names that exist like where-to-buy-ice-sculptures.com that are keyword stuffed. Search engines will discard that faster than yesterday’s trash.
Make it Crystal Clear
Be sure your domain name clarifies what your business does and isn’t confusing. Ice Sculptures.com spells out that you deal in ice sculptures and wouldn’t be confusing to potential customers. However, something like FrozanArt.com might have someone asking if you made gourmet popsicles or if you preserve art so it is frozen in time or any number of things the human brain can imagine.
Write it, See it, Speak it, Hear it
To begin, literally write the name out, see what it looks like, say it out loud, and have others listen to it. After you say the name to a friend, ask them to write down what they’re hearing. If they can write it, it’s likely the chosen domain name is okay. Avoid cute spellings like KidzKorner.com as opposed to KidsCorner.com, especially if the actual spelling exists as another domain name. The only thing that will accomplish is driving traffic to someone else’s site. Also, don’t use numbers. When someone hears your website, it can be confusing about whether the number is written out or represented by a numeral.
The bottom line is that your domain name should be simple, make it obvious what the business is or does, and should be easy to write/type when heard. The simpler, the better. These tips will help you rank higher in searches and make it easier for potential customers to find you on the web.