What’s In A Domain Name?
Choosing Domain Names
So you’re getting your business online, well done for taking the plunge. Choosing a domain name is very important in the web design process.
1. First and foremost… use a reputable domain name registrar. You are about to invest money into this venture, marketing your domain name to the masses, and having the registrar go out of business or forget to advise you that your domain is due for renewal and then it expires and someone else grabs after you have done all that hard work will not make you a happy camper. Pay a few extra dollars and get them from a reputable registrar.
2. Search engines love descriptive domain names. Let’s take a fictional baby store called Kids Cupboard. Nice name, but unless you sell children’s wardrobes the search engines aren’t going to rank you as well as if you had www.babyproducts.com.au for a domain name. People will to search for the term “baby products” and it makes a huge difference if you own the domain name that exactly fits the search phrase. It will also have a higher resale value should you wish to sell it later.
3. We usually recommend the .com.au for Australian businesses because Google will show Australian websites to Australian web surfers (yes they know where you are by your IP address on your computer). Make sure you get the .com as well as the .com.au to ensure anyone who forgets to type the .au domain will be redirected to your new site also. A note on this: you need a web developer who knows what they are doing because if they don’t do this correctly it will split your page rank between the two domains.
4. Ensure you also get a domain that matches your bsuiness name. Firstly you want anyone who knows your business by name to find you, and the last thing you want is your competitor registering the domain with your business name! And it’s probably nicer to have that domain on your business card and stationery as well. Again, get the .com.au and .com. At the end of the day they are cheap enough to buy a few and have them all redirect to your main site.
5. Don’t be tempted to register the full name of your business if it is long. www.bobs-emporium-of-fine-furniture.com.au may be the name, but every time someone ask you for your web address for the next 20 years you are going to having to spell it for them, complete with the dashes. The problem is usually compounded by your email addresses which are firstname.lastname@example.org – it will drive you mad.
6. Don’t try being smart and registereing your competitors’ business names, you will cause yourself more headaches than it’s worth.