So, you’ve decided to set up your own website and the exciting journey is about to begin. But what comes next is crucial… selecting the right domain name.
Registering a domain name is more than just combining some letters to create a URL, it’s your brand identity. Whether it’s a personal site, corporate website or e-commerce, your website name needs to work for you.
You might already have a brand name, or idea of what to call your website. But research is paramount before committing to your online identity.
Here are our golden rules to finding the right domain name for you:
The most significant of any golden rule – do your research. Check that your brand name doesn’t have any negative connotations (e.g., ‘Crafty’ has many meanings) and that it isn’t associated with another brand already. You can research trademarks online, as well as existing domain registrations through our domain search form.
- Working with what you have
If you already have a brand name and that domain is taken, or too expensive for your budget, you’ll need to get creative. Try other domain extensions, such as an IE domain name as you have a greater chance of this being available for registration.
Alternatively, expand on your name without making the URL too long. For instance, if jonspizza.com is taken, you could try jonspizzadublin.com or jonspizza.ie.
- Choose key words
While it may seem obvious, choosing keywords that your customers/visitors will be searching for may help you gain a higher SEO ranking.
- Keep it local
Irish hosting is growing in popularity since companies understand the value that a local service can provide. While this may not apply to all businesses, consider if your company might benefit from a .ie or a co.uk domain for instance. LetsHost is one of the few providers licenced to sell .ie extensions, starting from just €4.99 a year.
- Short and punchy
Names that are short and punchy will be memorable and easier to find. Try to avoid long names, since they can easily be misspelt, forgotten and harder to find.
- Domain Extensions
There are numerous options for your website domain extension. By far the most recognised is .com, but that’s not to say it’s best for your business. When it comes to advertising to Irish customers, .IE is the only show in town.
- Avoid numbers, hyphens and abbreviations
As a general rule, hyphens, numbers and abbreviations can be confusing to visitors.
Another consideration is that while using hyphens can make finding your website harder, it does have the benefit of separating your keywords, which can help with SEO ranking.
- Think long term
And finally, think of the longevity of your website. For instance, you might be a parent blogger writing about your experience as a new mum, but your child will grow up and will your website name still be appropriate?