Choosing the perfect domain name is no easy task. It’s about as hard as selecting your business name. For some of those, that may come easily, but for the rest of us, it is no easy feat.

When you are choosing a domain name, you need to think:

  • Is it catchy?
  • Does someone else have a similar domain name?
  • How does the domain impact my brand?
  • Is it short, sweet and simple?

A unique domain helps your business in many ways. For instance, it boosts credibility and drives traffic to your website. You need something that represents your brand with that “wow factor” that everyone talks about. You want viewers to feel something if they come to your site, whether that is peace, happiness, ambition or something else entirely. You want them to remember what you have to say, and associate your domain and brand image with a positive emotion.

Here are 9 tips for choosing a stellar domain name:

1. Brainstorm.

Unless you find the perfect “unicorn” domain, research it, and find that it is nowhere else and accurately represents your brand, write down all of your ideas. You never know when you’ll come up with a winner. Run them by your friends and family and see what they think. Then, research them to make sure no one else is using them. From there, you can narrow down your options.

2. Keep it short and memorable.

Your domain needs to be easy to pronounce and hard to misspell. The goal is to keep it as easy to type as possible. Most domain names have nine or less characters.

3. Stay relevant to your business.

Your domain name does not need to be your business’s name, but it does need to reflect your business’s purpose or projects. Think about what your business does or wants to be known for.

4. Make it brandable.

Ensure your site is not confused with other brands. Siter.com, for instance, would sound too similar to an already established site.com so the latter brand may not be the first thing that comes to mind for consumers. This could impact your numbers.

5. Consider your goal(s) with the site.

Are you planning on blogging? According to impactbnd.com, businesses who blog receive 97% more links to their site. If this is what inspires you to set up your website instead of using it as a static online presence, it may be nice to think of a welcoming domain name that tells viewers what you are all about.

6. Ask your clients/followers what they think.

If you already have active social media accounts, ask your followers what they think would be a great domain name. Host a contest, and offer a prize to the winning domain name. Otherwise, you can give them the options you’ve come up with so far, and see which one they like best.

7. Be open-minded and flexible.

Combine words and phrases carefully when coming up with your domain name. Think hard before adding “Communications” or another business type to the end of the name because if you want to change your products and services, that may inhibit you later on. Think about google.com for instance. It’s not laid out as googlellc.com or googlecompany.com. It’s just google: short, sweet, simple and to the point.

8. Make sure the domain is available on social media.

There’s no feeling like setting up a domain name, and then going to register your social media accounts when you realize the social media name is taken. *Gasp* Before you secure your domain name, go on social media and look to see if the name has been taken or you may have inconsistent branding among sites.

9. Use an appropriate domain extension or TLD.

What makes more sense for your business–using a top level domain (TLD) name such as .com/.org or using an extension such as .company/.jewelry, etc.? Entrepreneur has a great article on how TLDs and extensions can impact your site’s SEO.

You’ve heard our two cents on domain names. How did you come up with your domain name?

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