Picking a great domain for your web site or blogs is one of the most important decisions you will make for your site. Not only is it the ‘name’ of your site, but it’s also the location that people will type in to find your site as well. This means it will also be associated with the branding of your site and something you really shouldn’t change once your site goes live.
With all of these considerations in mind, buying your first (or next) domain name shouldn’t be something you simply do on the fly. With most ‘good’ and original domain names already taken, it’s going to take some creativity or extra money to secure a decent domain.
Something else to consider is buying multiple variations of your personal or brand name to keep yourself protected. This is something most professionals and bloggers can relate with, and discussed in detail in this “One Domain is Never Enough” article from Forbes.
How to Choose a Domain Name for Your Business
Through the use of the “How to Choose a Domain Name for Your Business” infographic below (from WhoIsHostingThis), we are going to take a look at some of the best ways to come up with a great domain name for your site. At the same time, we will also look at a few of the best resources online for buying a domain name, how to setup a domain name with your web hosting and a few other questions new site owners and bloggers might have the first time around.
- Use your domain name as a branding tool
- Be short, catchy and memorable
- Consider the extension (.com, .net, .org)
- Protecting your trademark
- Brand yourself professionally and personally
- Be creative with your name
- Stay away from hyphenated domain names
- Check your name availability across all social sites
- Be sure not to let your domain expire
A good rule of thumb is to always register your personal name as a .com domain if it’s available, as it’s likely someone else with that same name will register it sooner than later. Once a domain name is registered, it’s extremely hard (and sometimes expensive) to try and get it back. Also, be sure to stay away from any of the new domain extensions like .me, .tv or any others — while these might seem appealing, they just don’t tend to work as well as the normal .com, .net and .org domains do.
Where to Register a Domain Name
When it comes time to register your domain name, you have a lot of options. Some people like to buy their domain name at the same time they are setting up their web hosting, while other times people like to register their domain with a registrar and simply connect the two together later on. I personally like to register all of my domains in one location, so I always can keep an eye on them and make sure they are updated. Connecting a domain name (changing it’s DNS information) to a different web host is quite easy… and you can learn more about that here.
How Much Will a Domain Name Cost
Just like you can register a domain name from different locations, you can pay different prices for your domain names as well. On average, a new domain name will cost around $10-$20 per year. Some registrar companies can charge upwards of $35 per year, while some hosting provides will actually provide users with a domain as long as the customer continues to host through their service.
To learn more about domain registration and pricing, it’s always a good idea to look at the top registrars online. Providers like 1&1 give the chance to check if your desired name is available for your domain, then later register if the site is free.
No matter where you are registering your domain name, be sure to consider all of the fine points laid out above in the bullet points and through the domain name infographic below.