When choosing a domain name you need to first understand why we have domains. If we didn’t have domain names we would have to use a bunch of meaningless numbers which would be impossible to remember and not very useful when we are trying to market our websites. So basically our domain names are our websites address, and we need these domains for our sites to be hosted on.
So when we think about choosing our domain name we should think of the terms people will use to find your website, these are known as key words. Try and use 1 -2 keywords in your domain name. You can also use your company name or brand. Example if your business is based in the UK and is called The Fresh Flower Shop your ideal domain would be www.freshflowershop.co.uk. It is possible to add hyphens to make it easier to read like www.fresh-flower-shop.co.uk but the shorter the domain name the easier it is to remember and it has been said that the use of hyphens can be seen as spammy to the search engines.
All domain names start with www. followed by your chosen name then there are various different extensions such as .co.uk, .com, .org, .biz etc. Depending on your location and the type of website you are running this will then determine the extension you should choose as your primary domain. So for example; if you are company offering businesses services or selling products from the UK then a .co.uk extension is the one for you. Having said this I would recommend you also register the other variations of the domain so your competitors are unable to reserve them. The main ones I would go for are .COM, .NET, .ORG, .INFO, .BIZ, & .MOBI.
Domain Extension Meanings
Here are some of the most popular domain extensions and their meanings.
.CO.UK (United Kingdom)
Perfect choice for commercial related websites based in the United Kingdom.
Generally intended for commercial use. Is one of the most recognized domain name extension.
Was originally intended for network type websites such as internet service providers. This definitely isn’t the case anymore; people are registering .NET domains for commercial use, generally if the .COM or .CO.UK extension isn’t available
This domain extension was originally intended for non-profit or trade organizations. Again, people are registering this extension if they extension they want isn’t available or they are trying to protect their main domain name by buying the other extensions.
This is generally used to classify a website as a business. I feel this one is a great alternative if the .COM or the .CO.UK extensions aren’t available.
Is generally used as an extension for informational websites. If you are developing an informational website it’s definitely a domain extension that I’d register.
This domain extension, as of this blog is fairly new. It is primarily reserved for websites built for displaying on mobile devices, I think this extension will become more and more popular in time.
Is used primarily for media, primarily video, related websites.
This is the newest domain, as of this blog. It is used for personal related websites such as family websites, displaying your CV or art work. Basically for personal use.
Is similar to .ME as its intended for personal use.
.US (United States)
Generally refers to US based companies.
Generally reserved for Canadian based businesses.
(There are other extensions which are country code domains that are restricted to businesses or individuals living in that particular country).
The domain name extension doesn’t actually make any difference when it comes to your search engine rankings; it just needs to be the most relevant to your business.
Now you know the basics of domain names go and get yours before anyone else does! If you would like any help in choosing your domain or you would like me to register it for you please let me know.