This guest post is by Lee Manning of the Website Marketing And Design Blog .
So You're ready to buy a .com domian name? Good for you! Go get 'em! Here's a little advice to get you on your way!
1. How Do You Decide On The Right Domain Name?
Basically, you want a name with these characteristics:
- Memorable: Are you called Jim and do you sell cars? How about www.jimquickcars.com - do you get the drift?
- Descriptive: Use your company name rather than company initials (don't make the user have to think). I know a guy called Sam, who does great transport and logistics over at www.samstransport.co.uk. Ok, so it's not a .com domain, but the point is that he decided not to make people think, by choosing to using his full company name: Sam's Transport (Heathrow) Limited instead of the initials www.STHL.com.
2. How Do You Check Availability Of A Domain Name?
Here's a list of decent domain name providers, for a good place to start - they all pull from the same source of information, so it's mainly about shopping for price and deciding on a company you can trust to make the transaction.
Domain name registrars are companies accredited by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and/or by a national ccTLD authority to register Internet domain names. These companies are often web hosting companies who offer a range of website-related services.
3. What If That Swish Name You Chose Is Taken?
It happens: you're late to the domain party - try not to forget that! I could take some time to offer you suggestions on how to go about making contact with the owner of the domain and reaching out to see if you can make a purchase, you can read about it HERE if that's your goal - but take it from me it's not that important. Your websites target audience will find you if your site is:
- Shared often via social media channels (Twitter, Facebook, etc)
- Marketed properly both online and offline
It's my opinion that your domain name is only important in two ways:
1. Easy to remember (2-3 words)
2. Key worded based on your sites likely content.
Here's a quick-fire list of frequently asked .com questions:
Q. How much is this going to cost me?
A. Anything from $2 to $50 per year - any more and you should re-think how important that chosen domain is.
Q. Wait... You said per-year - Don't I own it then?
A. You'll be the rights holder to your domain, but you'll have to pay to renew it. The only way someone can steal it is if you forget to renew. Ensure the email you sign up with is one you can be contacted with in the future - they'll tell you many times that your domain in nearing renewal.
Q. Should you buy .net .org .alternative domain?
A. If you have a brand that you need to protect from copy cat's -YES. It's costly, so you need to be confident that there's value in protecting your brand that far. If you're just making a blog - you should be ok with your one domain, but the choice is up to you mainly depending on how awesome you think your site will be.
Q. Can I call my blog: www.twittermessage.com (Or the like)?
A. You better have pretty awesome lawyers if you're thinking of stealing ANY traffic from a popular site. Popular sites generally have specialist teams to ensure that their brand is protected. You do not want one of these teams to make contact with you.
I hope this information is useful to you. Now it's over to you - go and set the internet on fire! You can do it champ!
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Lee Manning is an enthusiastic marketing blogger from the UK and the founder of the Website Marketing And Design Blog. If you’d like to reach out to Lee, contact him on his Facebook page or send him a Tweet.