By Golda Smith
How many times in the last month have you typed a URL (website address) into your web browser only to end up at a site that you had no intention of going to?
Maybe one too many times.
You'll admit, it was an innocent enough mistake. Sadly, too many of those “mistakes” are driving potential clients into the waiting checkout lines of your competitors. “What are you talking about Golda?” I’ll tell you what I’m talking about, your domain name!
Choosing your domain name is the most important thing to consider when you’re creating your website. Your domain name is more important than the fabulous content that you will create and here’s why. If your intended audience can’t find you, then nothing else really matters. Your domain name should reflect who you are and what your blog is about.
Here are a few rules to follow when choosing your domain name:
1. MUST be easy to spell
When a domain is your first and last name, it needs to be very simple to spell, as well as not having a bunch of different spelling variations (Kelly, Kellie, Kelli). Stay away from hyphens, numbers, and unusual spelling. Remember people have short attention spans and if they mistakenly are taken to another site because they couldn’t spell your domain name correctly, the likely hood of them coming back is very slim … especially if the site they were taken to is a competitor.
2. Your domain name should be easy to remember
Just because it sounds good, and your mom says it looks good, it doesn’t mean it’s the one for you. Oprah.com … memorable, MommyPoppins.com … memorable, CareerBuilder.com … memorable, TheWorkatHomeWoman.com … memorable. You get the point! Side note, a few years ago, I tried to purchase golda.com. Piece of cake, or so I thought. It was already taken and it went to a travel page about Charleston, South Carolina, how random. The last thing you want is to have the most excellent content in your niche, but no one can recall the name of your website. And if they can’t remember it, they can’t refer it.
3. Keep it brief
If your domain name takes a third of the alphabet, it’s way too long. Remember the second rule. Say it out loud. How does it sound? If you are asked to repeat it to yourself or if it just takes to long to say then go back to the drawing board and make a few tweaks.
4. Stick with dot com
If it’s not available, don’t have a nervous breakdown. Just keep brainstorming and coming up with a list of possible domain names. If you have a really competitive keyword, you may want to consider purchasing not only the dot-com but also the dot-net as well. However, dot-com is still what most people think of first when typing a URL.
There you have it. It’s not complicated. Just remember to keep it brief, memorable and easy to spell, and you’ll have won half of the battle. The rest is for another blog post.
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Golda Smith is a single mom who is building her “Business From The Kitchen Table” and enjoys working with other moms to get them into the happy zone and living the lives they were meant to live!