When creating a new site, one of the key things for businesses to consider is the domain name. This is the name which can make or break a business. Choose the right name, and you may find more traffic than you can handle. Make a mistake, and well, hopefully it’s not too late to go back and pick something else. A domain name doesn’t have to describe your business exactly.

Although, it can help depending on what you do. To illustrate, if you offer cloud hosting services, it may be helpful to have the word “cloud” somewhere within the name. On the other hand, if you offer a ride sharing service, you can pick any name you like that sounds both interesting and unique. In addition, you are not limited to the .com name extension. There are many top-level domains to choose from such as .agency, .club, .italy and more.

What’s a domain name to a small business?

With millions of domain names already purchased, it might seem difficult—at first—trying to find a name you like. Especially if all the names you want are already taken. This is why top-level domain names were added because many of the best .coms have been taken.

The last thing you want to do is create an unnecessarily long domain name just so that you can get a .com. Search engines no longer give preference to .coms, so you can have the domain name extension of your choice.

Plus, it helps to describe the services and products you offer. You can use a country-specific extension if you plan to expand. For example, you might use .spain, .italy or any other country of your choice.

If you run a restaurant or catering business, you might try BurgerHeaven.food. This is something customers and prospects are much more likely to remember. Without the .food extension, Burger Heaven could mean anything, including a game. With the .food extension, the type of business will be quite clear.

Use a domain name relevant to your mission

Through new gTLD domains, you can get truly creative. For example, if you want to run a marketing campaign based on landing pages—you might get multiple domain names which lead to specific lines of business. You might have one main portal—BurgerHeaven.food. Then, BurgerHeaven.app can take users to your mobile app. BurgerHeaven.news would offer updates and press releases.

BurgerHeaven.club can lead to your company’s rewards program. If you currently have a .com, you might even make the transition completely to .food or whichever extension aligns directly with your product or service.

Get in with social media

Even if you don’t like social media, it’s here to stay. Not to mention, it’s one of the best free outlets for marketing your business. You need it to survive in today’s hyper-competitive, global economy. What you can do is create an engaging and memorable branded domain name to direct prospects and customers to your preferred social media account.

With so many social media platforms to choose from, some will work better for you than others. If one platform ceases to exist, you should have a means of directing your followers to another social medial platform. This way, you have some sort of control. You can always revise it to lead somewhere else in the future.

Help your SEO

Search engines often look at domain names to determine how valuable your site is for users. If you incorporate the right keywords into your domain name, it can rank higher in search results for those particular keywords. As a result, customers can find you more easily.

Plus, it may even increase sales and traffic. When you have a meaningful and impactful extension, you can get a positive boost in search engine rankings. Just like real estate, a good domain name does have value. You want something that defines your niche and category. This can truly cement your place as a leader in your industry.

Plan

Think of a budget for your domain names, and how you might intend to use them in the future. You want to purchase more than one because you’ll have marketing campaigns, competition who want the same name and social media profiles. It’s always important to have a backup, as well.

Your name might be popular today, but that may not always be the case. Also, think of something you would like for the long-term. Something that makes senses for your business and your target market. In this case, it is important to narrow your focus.

Have you thought of several domain names you might use for your business? What about top-level domain names and specific extensions? Are you ready to switch over from a .com extension? Do you have marketing campaigns that can benefit from specific extensions? The good news if you now have many more options with top-level domain names. All you have to do is pick the right ones.

Author: Katrina Manning is a content marketing specialist with BuildNicheLinks who has penned thousands of articles on business, tech, lifestyle and digital marketing for a wide variety of global B2B clients. Connect with Katrina on Twitter.

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