Whether you’re trying to develop your own personal brand or that of your business, so much of it starts with your domain name. After all, it’s what people will type in to visit your site, so it better be memorable and explanatory.
But there’s more to it than that. Taking the wrong approach here may not just result in a forgettable domain name; it could also give visitors the wrong impression of your site.
We’ve been in SEO and website design in NY and NJ for a while now and we know what it takes to come up with a solid, effective domain name, so we put together these tips for doing just that.
Exact Match Domains aren’t what they used to be.
From a pure search engine optimization standpoint, not too long ago, going with an exact-match domain was the way to go because search engines took that as a clear indication that the site was a perfect match for queries using those exact keywords. However, that’s no longer the case.
As we all know, nowadays, moving your website up the SERPs is all about how much high-quality content you supply your target audience with, and simply creating a domain name that indicates you have relevant content doesn’t say anything about its quality.
That means that the search engines won’t typically move you too far up the rankings because of it any more. So, while EMDs still have a purpose, they’re not nearly as advantageous as they were in the past.
Brand or generic?
If you’re in a position where you have a brand name that’s immediately recognizable to most people who will come across it, then it makes complete sense to use it as or in your domain name because they’ll be typing it directly into the URL field anyway. Unfortunately, that’s not the case for most businesses.
So, if you’re just starting out or your business is successful yet doesn’t have a recognizable brand name, you may want to think of going with something a little more generic. Just remember, if you’re rebranding, redirect visitors from your old domain name so you don’t lose any of the steam you’ve gained.
You also need to remember that unless you’re just adding a hyphen to your name or something of that nature, you’ll be altering your entire brand by making big changes to your name. So, think carefully before making any decisions and NEVER change your company’s entire brand identity just because a cheap domain name is available.
Where are you going from here?
Two businesses in different states can legally have the same name in the U.S., so you need to consider the fact that your brand name may be taken by an out-of-state company already. In that case, the domain choice comes down to how you plan to grow and evolve as a company.
Yes, you can create multiple domains for the various areas you provide your services with or offer your products to, but take it from us as NY and NJ SEO experts, that’s not the best idea as far as search purposes.
So, if you’re planning on expanding in the future or already offer products or services in states where your brand name already exists, it may be worth reaching out to the other business to see about buying their domain name. If that doesn’t work, you may have to tweak your name to make it more unique.
A few last tips…
Lastly, avoid using hyphens when creating a domain name as they tend to lead to a negative, spammy vibe, and be careful when using new brand extensions like “.net” because you could end up driving traffic to the “.com” version you likely first looked into buying.
If you go that route, go with a newer, more specific extension like “.guitars” if you sell guitars. As long as it’s relevant, there will be far less of a chance of visitors accidentally going to a competitor’s site, and avoid getting too clever with intentional misspellings and the like as well as they’ll probably cause more harm than good.
About Us: Climb The Search, a leading SEO company in NY and NJ, offers the total search marketing package, including inbound marketing, search engine advertising, and social media marketing. At CTS, we help businesses grow, every day.