Tips for choosing domain name from experts

Check Availability on Social Media Sites and Trademarks

Before you move forward with a specific domain name, check to see if the name is available on social media sites, as well as if there are any trademarks already registered to the name. To build your brand, it's ideal to have the same name across your domain and social networks. This builds familiarity and makes it easy for your visitors, fans, and customers to find you around the web. And to avoid legal issues, you should stay away from names that already have trademarks. So, how can you quickly check social networks and trademarks for your potential domain name? It's quite easy with a tool like Knowem. Search your potential domain name there, and it'll show you if it's available throughout over 25 popular social networks, and also if there are any trademarks already registered to the name. If it's taken, consider tweaking it so that you can create original social media profiles. - ROBERT MENING - WebsiteSetup


Bias towards .com

I know, it's 2017. Why are we still talking about .com? The internet's been around 20-plus years. Why does .com matter so much when there are so many TLD extension options? The answer is, .com is the most recognized and most accessible TLD. Cognitive fluency dictates that we should go with something easy, that people have an association with, and .com is still the primary TLD. If you want to build up a very brandable domain that can do well, you want a .com. Probably, eventually, if you are very successful, you're going to have to try and go capture it anyway, and so I would bias you to get it if you can If it's unavailable, my suggestion would be to go with the .net, .co, or a known ccTLD. Those are your best bets. A known ccTLD might be something like .ca in Canada or .it in Italy. - Rand Fishkin - Moz


Make it brandable

Your domain name will be your brand. Some names speak for themselves. When you hear the name, you know what the website is about. Take a look at Top 100 blogs by DailyTekk, and you'll see that most popular websites have brandable names. - Ogi Djuraskovic - FirstSiteGuide team


Brandable Over Generic

Creative and brandable are always better than generic. Remember: Your domain name is how visitors will find, remember, and share your company on the web. It is the foundation of your brand. Here's the main difference between a brandable and generic domain name: A brandable domain name is unique and stands out from the competition, while a generic domain name is usually stuffed with keywords and unmemorable. For example, do you know the difference between Healthinsurance.net, Newhealthinsurance.com, or Healthinsurancesort.com? Probably not, right? These are horribly generic. They don't have any meaning. You won't hear anyone talking about how awesome 'Insurance.com' is. Plus, variants of the word 'insurance' will increase the competition and make it blend in even more. But sites like UnitedHealthCareOnline.com and Anthem.com stand out, because they stand for something. When people hear those domain names, there is a trust factor there. Here's how to find a more brandable domain name: Create new words. You can make up your own catchy, new words. That's what Google, Bing, and Yahoo did. Use existing words. You can use a thesaurus to find interesting words that fit your brand. Use domain name generators. These tools can help you create a unique, brandable domain name from your initial domain ideas and keywords. (We'll highlight some of our favorite domain name generators later on in this post.) - ROBERT MENING - WebsiteSetup


Shorter is always better

As we've been saying, shorter is better. If you can't get your domain name down to one memorable word (almost impossible to come by these days), then consider adding one or maximum two more words. Combinations of two words work great for the memorable names like LifeHacker.com or GeekSquad.com. Also, don't use an acronym. People will never remember the letters unless it's a highly catchy name. - Ogi Djuraskovic - FirstSiteGuide team


Consider Enabling Domain ID Protection

In simple terms, domain ID protection masks your personal contact information from anyone performing a whois lookup on your domain name. By default, and under ICANN rules (the organization that regulates domain names), all domain names must have publicly viewable contact information assigned to them - the same information you had to provide during registration. This includes your name, address, phone number, and email address. Let me say this again, by default, all of this is visible to anyone who puts your domain name through a tool such as the aforementioned who.is. This is not perfect. First, anyone can see this info, which means your personal details are exposed. You're basically sacrificing part of your privacy for nothing in exchange. So, the way to solve this is to set domain ID protection with your domain registrar (all domain registrars offer this). This is usually a paid feature, though. The price tag can be around $1 a month. - Karol K - Winning WP


Avoid trademark infringement & confusion

The ideal domain name is distinctive. It shouldn't be easily confused with the name of another site or brand. After all, you don't want any lawsuits on your hands. If your domain name infringes on a trademark, you could be sued and forced to give up the domain. Before you register your domain name, you can check to see if it violates any US trademarks here. On a related note: if people can confuse your name with another brand, so can search engines. Picking a name that's too similar to another business can lead to your name's search engine results being littered with irrelevant links. - Denis Pinsky - Forbes


Consider Using Keywords

Keywords can help improve your SEO - but you need to tread carefully here. If you try to awkwardly stuff keywords into your domain, it comes across as generic (like we talked about before). If you do choose to use keywords, put the keywords at the beginning of your domain. That's where they'll be the most powerful for your ranking. You can find keywords with tools like Google Keyword Planner and Keywordtool.io. - ROBERT MENING - WebsiteSetup


Use an appropriate domain name extension

Extensions are suffixes, such as .com or .net, at the end of web addresses. These can have specific uses, so make sure to choose one that works for your business. The .com domain extension is far and away the most popular, but it can be tough to get a short and memorable .com domain name because it's been around for so long. A bevy of new generic top-level domains - like .photography, .nyc and .guru - offer a great opportunity to register short and highly relevant names. And here are some other top extensions and how they're often used: .co : an abbreviation for company, commerce, and community. .info : informational sites. .net : technical, Internet infrastructure sites. .org : non-commercial organizations and nonprofits. .biz : business or commercial use, like e-commerce sites. .me : blogs, resumes or personal sites. Pro tip: You don't need to build a website for every domain. Just forward any additional domains to your primary website. - Andrea Rowland - GoDaddy


Make it memorable

Word-of-mouth marketing is still the best of all. If you want to help your brand spread faster, make your domain easy to remember. Having a great website won't matter if no one can remember your domain name. - Ryan Shelley - Search Engine Land


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