How to Choose a Good Domain Name

1. Make the URL Short

The best domains are the shorter ones. 3 and 4 letter domain names have already all been registered, and 5 letter domain names are quickly going as well. There isn’t a set guideline as to how many letters your domain should have, but generally the shorter the better. Always try to have less than 10 characters in your domain name, and try to never use more than 20.

The same goes for words in the domain name. One word domains are the absolute best, two word domains are good, and three word domains are average. Anything with more than three words in it can be used, but isn’t advised.

For example, which of the following would you rather visit?

Mousepads.com

GetMousepads.com

LookForMousepads.com

BuyUsedMousepadsOnline.com

2. Make it Easy to Remember

A lot of internet users don’t care to use bookmarks. They would rather memorize the domain of the sites they want to visit and type them in the address bar. If you have a complex URL, it decreases the chance that someone will remember your address, therefore decreasing the chances of repeat visitors.

For example, fkslaw.com is a short domain name, but isn’t memorable. An exception to this would perhaps be if the initials represent the name of the website or an important message.

3. Make it Easy to Spell

Always use the proper spellings of words when registering a domain name. You wouldn’t want potential visitors to end up on a site that isn’t yours. Some things you’ll want to avoid using are words with a complex pronunciation, foreign words, any strange combinations of letters, or anything else that could possible be misspelled.

For example, ColourBarn.com may be challenging for English speaking visitors to find since it uses the British spelling of the world ‘color.’

4. Use a Common TLD Extension, Preferably .com

Always try to get the .com extension for any domain you are registering. There are some exceptions to this, for example an organization may rather go with an .org extension. Another exception would be companies in other countries wanting to go with a regional extension, such as .cn, .ru, .co.uk, etc.

If you can acquire the .com extension, then it’s always a good idea to buy the other extensions such as .net and .org too. This will prevent someone else from registering them which could cause trouble, and if someone does happen to type in the other extension and not .com, you’ll still get them as a visitor to your site.

5. Make it Descriptive

Try to include keywords in your domain name if possible, as they will help with search engine rankings. A descriptive domain name can give potential visitors an idea of what your site is about, and might make them more prone to click the link.

For example, if you see a link to MovieReviews.com, you can pretty much guess that the site is going to have reviews for movies on it.

6. If not Descriptive, Make it Brandable

Brandable domain names either have a nice pronunciation, a visually appealing effect, or an interesting combination of letters. It might not even be descriptive, but they can still be very efficient. Brandable domains should make your visitors associate the name of your site with the type of content on your site. A brandable domain could also potentially be descriptive, but that isn’t usually the case.
For example, Mashable.com is on of the biggest social media blogs on the internet. A lot of people know the name Mashable even though it isn’t descriptive of what the site offers.

7. Don’t Use Hyphens or Numbers

Domains that use hyphens or numbers usually go for way less than other domains. They are similar to domains using weird extensions or with crazy spellings. As a general rule, try not to use numbers or hyphens at all. The only exception would be if you want to purchase the domain KeywordKeyword.com, and it’s taken. You might want to purchase Keyword-Keyword.com then, although we recommend trying to find another domain to register without a hyphen.