Whatever your plan is for your website on the internet, choosing the correct domain name is essential for pulling in the correct clientele off the web.
Whatever your plan is for your website whether it be an email address, new business website or just using it to promote your services, your domain name is a big part of your brand. A brand is very important in 2019 as Google has started to rank websites regarding their brand popularity and awareness.
Finding the right domain for your company can be hard, especially when it has already been taken by another company. The sooner you register your domain or domains, the more chance you stand of getting the domain which is your first preferred choice.
Within this article you will gain all of the knowledge about everything you need to know about how to choose a domain name that will best suit your new Birmingham Web Design.
The Best Domain Tips for When You Build a Website for Your New Business in Birmingham
Tip 1 – Make sure your new domain name reflects what you do as a business
Your website is the centre piece to your online business and you need a domain name to make it very clear what you are about. Your domain name needs to be unique to your business and business goals.
For example, if your website is going to be built in a way that it is seen as a portfolio, your own name would be the most appropriate domain name, because the website is all about yourself. If you’re going to be starting a blog, your domain should be themed around what you will be writing articles about — birminghamblogsforu.co.uk for example.
When you are choosing the domain for your business, it is incredibly important to ensure that it closely matches your business name as much as possible, you don’t want it to be something completely different otherwise this will confuse potential customers and look silly. This is mostly because the average person will often guess your domain name based on the name of your business.
Think about it this way in a list of search results and in emails, it might not be too obvious which business is yours if your domain name doesn’t match your business name. It might sound confusing but, it really isn’t if you think about it.
A notable example of a huge business that doesn’t match its brand name to its own domain is B&Q, which uses DIY.com to reflect its position as the go-to place for do it yourself supplies. More importantly, they have also secured bandq.com and bandq.co.uk, which both redirect to DIY.com, so if anyone guesses the domain name they will still reach the right place, which is quite smart.
Tip 2 – Make your domain name memorable
When you are choosing your new domain name, it’s worth knowing for future reference that search engines like Google are not the only way for people to find your website.
You might want to mention your website to a friend or family member so that they can look it up later, for example, and it might be printed on your business cards or pamphlets. Either way, they’ll have to type the website address into their browser to see it for themselves, and they might also want to tell their friends about it.
That means your domain name needs to be easy to remember, easy to say and easy to type. In other words, the shorter and simpler, the better. Google has also stated that longer domains are subject to lower rankings as well.
To keep your domain name simple, it's best to avoid:
- Numbers – these cause confusion because, when spoken, it’s not clear whether a number should be spelled out or in numerical form. They also look absolutely terrible in a domain name
- Long words, or words that are difficult to spell. Not everyone is a genius like yourself
- Try not to have more than three words within in a domain
- Hyphens – You only really use hyphens if you are really interested in having a certain domain, however, it has already been taken. So, what do you do? You buy a domain similar with hyphens within it
Quick Memorability Checklist
- Is it easy to say? – does it roll off your tongue, is it easy to pronounce?
- Is it Easy to read? –If it is several words joined together, is the domain name clear where one word ends and the other begins? Are there any commonly misspelled or mistyped words, or words that are otherwise difficult for people to spell?
- Is it Easy to spell? – This is very obvious but if you get confused with spelling your domain name then you might be in trouble.
- Does the domain name make sense? – would you need to explain the name, or is it clear why you have chosen it?
As an example, xbox.com might be taken, but x-box.com might be available.
Tip 3 – Making up words
As time goes on, shorter names for domains are becoming less and less grabbable. Therefore, some inquisitive companies try to make up smaller synonyms or abbreviations to make their own domain work.
In fact, domain name availability is one of the most important processes in naming your new business. Shpock.com has become a recent example, as is Moonpig.
As Moonpig’s story tells us, as well as giving you a better chance of getting your first-choice domain name being available, making up words will help you stand out from the crowd and build your own brand identity online.
The only potential issue with this is that, aforementioned above, it is important to ensure it is easy to spell and pronounce. Moonpig has the advantage of being a joining of two simple words, but Shpock is a bit harder to spell.
So, if you’re thinking of inventing a word for your domain name which to be honest you need to make it make sense but also make sure you subject it to our quick memorability checklist.
Tip 4 – Is the domain name future-proof?
Although it is entirely possible to move your website onto another domain in the near future, it’s better to pick a domain name that you will stick with for the test of time. Moving to a different domain name can give you some SEO issues, as well as potentially damaging the brand you’ve worked so hard to build up over the years.
Obviously, try to avoid domain names that have dates within them. If you run a local tough mudder for example, pick a domain such as stoketoughmudder.co.uk rather than stoketoughrunner2k19.co.uk. Doing this, you can then reuse the website every year instead of starting from the beginning every time, plus you will benefit from the strength the domain name has gained from people sharing and linking to it over the years.
If your new website and domain is for your business, you will need to think about where you see your business going in the future and make sure your domain name does not limit the amount of potential that it quite possibly has. Having good business goals is always a great thing to have in mind for any business.
For instance, you might start out as a nail salon, with a domain name to reflect this by nature, but what happens when a couple of years down the line, you wish to expand the services your business has to include hairdressing?
Tip 5 – Use an appropriate domain name extension for example.co.uk or .com
The domain name itself isn’t the only thing you need to consider when you’re choosing a domain name; you will also need to take upon the decision of what extension to use.
The end to your domain name is called a ‘Top-Level Domain’, and there is a lot of different endings to choose from. The domain you choose will at the end of the day have an impact on how your website is perceived by users; for example, .org looks a little bit more trustworthy because it’s used by official charities and non-profit organisations, while.biz or.net come across as unprofessional as they have been associated with low-quality spam sites which are used to target actual companies.
If you are a UK-based business with UK customers, it is best to choose a domain ending in .co.uk, as this is a domain that shows visitors where you are from, the United Kingdom. You will also receive a lot more UK internet users. Google UK also gives more prominence to United Kingdom domains and websites. So, your website could potentially rank higher than a similar one with a.com domain, resulting in more traffic to your website from the United Kingdom and therefore more business locally and across the country.
If you area business in Wales, then another option is a .wales or .cymru domain, which shows you are Welsh and proud. You will also attract more Wales residing individuals.
You have four options when it comes to .uk domains. The traditional one which in all honesty is the better choice is called .co.uk, which has the authority of being a firmly established Top-Level Domain. For charities and non-profits, .org.uk fits the bill perfectly.
More recently, the shorter .uk has provided a snappier, more up-to-date alternative to .co.uk, however isn’t as good as .co.uk for google rankings, whereas .me.uk is ideal for building your own personal brand online, such as through a blog or portfolio site that is all about you.
Tip 6 – Get some opinions on your list of appropriate domains
When you have a number of different domains as your favourites from the available domain names you’ have take a fancy to, ask around with friends, family and even customers and see which one they think would be best suited for your business.
They may notice something you have not, such as spelling mistakes, things that do not make any sense or something that just doesn’t look pleasing to the eye.
Tip 7 – Conduct some research
Having now decided to settle on your favoured domain name, it is worth spending some amount of time for researching about it to make sure it is not legally protected.
If it is a bit too similar to that of a competitor– particularly a large competitor– there is a possibility that they have protected the domain name and its variants with a trademark or a copyright. For example, you might be a small local ale producer, however, if your domain name contains the word “barley”, it is definitely worth checking you will not run into problems with the Weetabix or Shreddies fame which contain both barely and other whole grains for consumption.
You can search for trademarks in the UK on the Government website. Which is .gov.uk
It is also important to check out what is on similar domains via using software like AHREFS before you buy just in case that domain has been attacked by spam.
Tip 8 – Try to Get hold of as many different variants as possible
As well as purchasing your chosen domain, try to buy different variants of it. This will stop others from buying similar domains which might be competition.
If you have your preferred domain name then try to get the other domains you liked or that are incredibility similar. This protects your domain name and stops others from getting access to similar domains which might end up having something completely different on, you never know a client could accidentally search for it. For instance, this means that nobody else will be able to set up a competing website on a similar domain which can be a problem, attracting customers who may actually have been looking for your business.
To make the most of all your purchases via domain names, make sure that all of your domain name variations are permanently redirected to your main domain so that anyone who tries to visit them ends up on your actual website. This can be done through your domain registrar.
Hopefully, this article was able to give you a better idea of how to build a website with a right domain for your new or existing business in Birmingham, or across the United Kingdom.
If you want to hire a web designer to build a website, then make sure you learn all about web design companies in Birmingham for choosing the right one for you.
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