Well there are no rules, however, there are guidelines on what makes a good, or bad, domain name.
First let's look at what a domain name is. A domain name is a way a device knows where your website lives. It's a bit of a process to find out all the details, but in just a few split seconds, it can find exactly where your website is and load it for you. Behind the scenes of a website being loaded is an IP address (this is basically a unique number given to a device on a network like the Internet). Your domain name is just an easier way of remembering where your website lives.
Confused? Don't panic. Let's look at it in a different way.
Imagine you are in a major band and one of your fans wanted to talk to you. They may know the band name but not your name. But by following the band and writing to the band they finally find you and get to talk to you. This is essentially what a domain name is, it's how visitors find your website, they may not know your exact name, but by entering your domain name, it can find out where your website lives and can view it. Think of it like a friend who knows a friend, who knows a friend.
Because of this, you should make sure your domain name fits your business, most businesses opt to have their business name as their domain name and this usually works, however, if your business has a long name it may become too complicated for your visitors to remember. For example, we have the domain name roseblade.media can you imagine if we had roseblademedialimited.co.uk? That's a mouthful (and an address bar full). You also need to make sure you have the right one because, for the most part, it is more cost effective to buy several years at once. Meaning you could be stuck with your domain name even if it's not right for your business.
More reasons to have the right name
There are many many more reasons why you should make sure you have the right domain name for your business, but let's look at the common ones.
- Changing your domain name can confuse your visitors and lower your ranking on search engines. Search engines such as Google and Bing learn to trust established websites. The longer your domain have been registered, the more trustworthy it can be seen to be.
- Finding the right one can be hard. There are many different options available, including the traditional .co.uk, .com, .org, .biz, .net, etc., and now even the more unique ones such as .wales, .solutions, .media, .management, etc. So finding the right one can be even more challenging for you. But with so many options, you're quite likely to find a suitable one for your business.
- And finally, the better your domain name, the easier it is for visitors to find your business. Would you prefer bbc.co.uk or britishbroadcastingcorporation.co.uk?
What are you, not who are you
You may be more than tempted to only go for your business name, but what if you're not well known? Who will know what you do? We could have just gone for roseblade.com, but who would then know we are a marketing agency? By going for roseblade.media we are hinting that we deal with media, if not specifially marketing. This means we are advertising what we do within our domain name, not just by paid for advertising.
What if others get it wrong?
There are options such as registering spelling errors too (so long as they're not already taken). So if you think there is a chance someone can genuinely spell it wrong then it may be worth looking at getting one. One of ours could be rosblad.media where the e's are missing from the first part. But you should consider this particularly if you have difficult words in your company name. Did you know, Googl.com is owned by Google?
Also try to have the shortest one you can think of. If you have a long business name, is there any way that you can shorten it but still keep it relevant? If there is then this will minimise the amount of spelling that a visitor can get wrong when trying to find you. Plus, it's far easier to remember a short domain name rather than a long one!
Still Feeling lost?
If you still feel like you're lost in the tide then drop us a line, and we'll try and help sort you out.