Day 8: Choosing a Domain Name + Giveaway

Choosing your domain name (or domain address) is very crucial in setting up your online business.  “What’s the big deal about it?”, you might ask.

Well, it is this name that eventually connects you to your audience.  People think about you, talk about you and remember you – with your domain name!

For instance, we say Angela of Good Morning Girls, Darlene of Time Warp Wife, and so on!

I took quite a long time to choose my domain name, clothedinscarlet.org.  And God definitely had a say in my choice (You can read about it here).  This name was chosen for the context behind it (and also because I loved the way it sounded… Lol!).  The name, “Clothed In Scarlet” now connects me with my audience.

I have jotted down a few tips to help you choose an appropriate domain name.  You can follow them even if you are going for a free option with a sub-domain, like abcd.blogspot.com.

Select a domain name that fits these basic criteria:

  • It should preferably be short and catchy.
  • It should be easy to spell and remember.
  • It should not violate any existing trademark.
  • It should resonate with your audience.

This quote from Smashing Magazine article correctly defines the process of picking a domain name.

Coming up with a good domain name requires a combination of strategy, imagination and good linguistic design practice.

Here are a few different ways you can choose the right domain name for your business.

Go with Your Name

SarahMae.com

You can select your own name to be your domain name, like SarahMae.com.  She uses this domain as an online home for her blog, books and speaking engagements.

There are pros and cons if you choose to name your website after yourself.  You can have all your products and services under one main website.  In fact, many online consultants and authors are going this route.

However, the business is completely tied to you – it is not independent of you.  If at any point of time, you want to sell your business, it could make things a bit complicated.

Go with Your Business Name

DaySpring.com

You can have your business name as your domain address.  Some of you might be familiar with DaySpring which sells beautiful Christian cards, gifts, home decor items and a whole lot more.  {I really love their products.  My only regret is that I cannot buy them as shipping costs to India (where I reside) are on the higher side.}

Well, getting back to the point, DaySpring’s domain address is the same as their business name.  If you choose to go with your unique business name, it will give you better branding and will help you stand out in the crowd.  Try not to opt for a lengthy domain address, though.  If you do, ensure it’s something your audience is very familiar with and can relate to easily.

Go with a Keyword

A keyword is the term people search for online, in order to find your business.  As an SEO specialist, I cannot tell you how much FREE traffic you can get when your domain name is a popular keyword.  I’m not telling you to go overboard and stuff keywords into your domain name, but this method works wonders for business.

Here’s the screenshot of a Google search result to establish this point.

Search Result

There are two ways you can include keywords in your domain name:

1. Go with Just the Keyword as Your Domain Name

In the screenshot above, you can see that the first result is that of Proverbs 31 Ministries {A website run by Lysa TerKeurst, Renee Swope and a team of passionate Christian women}.  Their domain address is proverbs31.org.  They simply use the keyword “Proverbs 31” as their domain name.  Google and other search engines give additional weightage to domains that are an exact-match keyword.

Another example is freehomeschooldeals.com by Jamerrill Stewart.  Here the keyword is ‘free homeschool deals’.  In this case also, this domain comes up first in the Google search results.

2. Go with a Combination – Keyword + Generic

Another way to get the SEO benefit and at the same time look different, is by choosing a combination.  You can add a specifier to the main keyword and make it unique.  For instance, TodaysChristianWoman.com is a combination.  ‘Christian Woman’ is the Keyword and ‘todays’ has been added to make it unique.

Tools and More Resources

Nameboy – Domain Name Generator.  If you enter one or two keywords related to your business and hit ‘Go!’, you will get lot of relevant name variations.  Don’t go for lengthy domain names or ones that have too many hyphens.

Domain Bot (Recommended) – It is similar to the tool above, but has a lot more options.  You can refine the search results and add more conditions to get one that suits your business.

The Effective Strategy For Choosing Right Domain Names by Smashing Magazine – This article is an absolute gem.  I’m sure you will get some good ideas from here.

Today's Action Step: Use the tips and tools suggested above to identify your domain name.

Domain Name Giveaway {5 Winners!}

And now for the fun part!!! We are giving away 5 Domain Names! Yes, you heard that right… 5 of you will win a (.com, .net, or .org) domain name of your choice.  You can use the form below to enter the giveaway.

This giveaway ends Sunday, July 14th – 12:00am (EST)!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

By entering this giveaway, you are agreeing to the following terms and conditions.

Terms & Conditions:

  1. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook or Twitter. We hereby release Facebook and Twitter of any liability.
  2. The winners will be contacted by email 48 hours after the giveaway ends. If you have any additional questions – feel free to send us an email!
  3. No purchase necessary to enter this giveaway.
  4. One must be above 18 years to enter this giveaway.
  5. The winners will each receive the rights to a (.com, .net, or .org) domain name of their choice (provided it is available).
  6. The domain names will be purchased by Clothed In Scarlet and will be transferred to the winners who will bear the cost of renewing it a year from now.
  7. The winners will have to create a free account with the domain registrar to initiate the domain transfer.
  8. The domain name can be transferred only 5 days after the initial registration.

 

Look out for tomorrow’s post, where we’ll be discussing prominent online domain registrars.

Click here to catch up on all the posts in this series.