What’s in a Good Domain (Website) Name?

Purchasing a domain name (also called a URL or web address) can be intimidating. After all, the possibilities are just about endless. How do you pick the right one? With so many things to consider, it may be helpful to know that there are actually some pretty straight-forward guidelines to help you decide.

Choose the right extension. Most people start with the assumption that “.com” is the best extension. While it’s certainly the most common and generic option, it may not be the best fit for your website. For starters, your chosen domain name ending in “.com” may be taken. Sometimes purchasing a domain name owned by someone else is possible, but it’s often cost prohibitive. It’s worth looking at other options, which in some cases, may even be a better fit. Click here for a comprehensive list of all available extensions and how they are used.

Make it easy to remember and type. Many people like to get clever with wording, use slang, or use numbers in place of words; for instance, using “4” instead of “for”. But remember, anything in your URL that needs to be explained every time you verbally tell it to someone (i.e. “Make sure you type the number ‘4’ instead of the word ‘for’” or “don’t forget to put a hyphen between each word”) increases the risk of them forgetting your URL or making a mistake… and in the worst case scenario, ending up at your competitor’s website!

Keep it simple and relevant. Needless to say, the more complicated a URL is, the more you risk potential customers getting confused and ending up in the wrong place. On the other hand, the more readable a URL is and the more it includes your top keywords, not only will your customers be more likely to remember it, but it will also help when it comes to search engine optimization. And while the maximum length for a URL is generally considered to be 2,000 characters, we recommend keeping it under 25 or so.

Still have questions? We’d be more than happy to answer them. Give us a call to find out more about choosing your domain name, or any of your other website, social media, or SEO needs. 202-409-8113