Similar to trademarks, the choice of a domain name must also be the result of careful strategic business planning to ensure the online presence of your website.
Many questions undoubtedly come to mind when choosing a domain name:
- what’s the best decision for ensuring broad protection of the domain name?
- should you use a generic name or one which specifically identifies the company or product?
- which is the best extension in line with the company’s activities?
- which precautions should you take so that the chosen domain name is positioned on search engines?
So what are the most important things to do before and when choosing a domain name?
Protecting your domain name
A first step is acting to protect your domain name in compliance with legislation, following specific assignment criteria in order to defend yourself against any illegal acts and/or acts of unfair competition, also in terms of confusion with others’ trademarks.
A second step is to check that the chosen domain is available and has not already been assigned. If it is already in use, consider a different extension (for example .info instead of .com) which is in any case related to the products/services and the objectives of your website, or otherwise purchase the domain name from the owner.
A third step is to register the same domain name with multiple alternative extensions, as well as domain names that are similar to the one chosen, to protect yourself from third parties intent on implementing scams which can intercept customers destined for your company.
Domain name extensions
An aspect not to underestimate is the choice of your domain extension, which in fact must be made in line with your company’s objectives, the relative activities carried out and the type of website to be created.
So if the .uk or .com extension (the most requested) are already taken, you can opt for other types of extensions such as .net, .info, .org.
In the process of acquiring a domain name, based on all the aspects to take into consideration, here are some typical errors to avoid.
Choosing a domain name: errors to avoid
Choosing one domain name over another also implies finding the correct name to assign to the domain itself, which:
- shouldn’t be too generic, but distinctive;
- should take keywords into account that are related to the business sector, chosen strategically and not superficially, to be used only for the sole benefit of the company;
- shouldn’t contain symbols (such as dashes), numbers or repeated letters;
- shouldn’t be written in the form of an acronym; it’s best to use the extended name.
Having listed the errors, let’s take a look at the best practices to take into account to best choose your domain name.
Best practices when choosing a domain name
The first suggestion is to choose a shorter domain name (no more than two or three words) that’s easy to write, pronounce and memorise, that’s original, unique and distinguished from other domain names already on the market.
This criterion allows more effective visibility of the domain name and better positioning on search engines, especially if the strategy also includes specific keywords.
Last but not least, it’s also essential to evaluate an adequate hosting choice that offers space for your company’s website, which must be fast and performing so as not to penalise its indexing on search engines.