The Guide to Buying a Domain for Your Website

Understanding TLD’s (Top Level Domains), Search Engine Optimization, branding, and how it works for your website.

Buying a domain is a difficult process for many website and business owners. Choosing the right domain can be hard, because there are so many (and sometimes, too little) options. A lot of the really good .COM domains are taken, which has opened the doors to many new and unique TLD’s (Top Level Domains).

You may have seen these new TLD’s, such as .biz, .realtor, .ninja etc. For some people they are cool and fit into their branding… While others find them to be gimmicky and even worse, bad for their SEO.

Top Level Domains & SEO

It’s no secret that some website owners have seen a drop in search engine rankings after switching to a new TLD.

This is why many website owners are still largely choosing the traditional .com, .ca, .org and others. Of course don’t let the above dissuade you from purchasing the new domains. Many people have made them work! Just keep in mind you may have a couple slight hiccups.

The availability of shorter, high quality domains when purchasing the new top-level-domains is worth the hiccups for a lot of people.

So how do you choose a domain name?

1) Brand Name

When should you buy a domain name based on your name or the name of your business? How popular are you? Do you have a budget for marketing and branding? If so, you may want to go for a straight up “branded” domain.

This will continue to solidify your name in the mind of your website visitors, readers and customers.

For many small business owners though, a lack of exposure leads to problems generating consistent traffic from the search engines with brand searches. In those cases, you may want to consider finding a domain name with your brand name, plus your location or business niche.

We touch on location and business niche (product or service keywords) more below. Continue reading.

2) Geo-Targeting (Location)

Should you include your country, city or county name in your domain? That can actually be a really good idea, yes.

However, it all depends on what your goals are. Do you have plans to expand into other cities or countries? If not, feel free to search for a domain with your location. Of course, you’ll want to find a domain name that includes your brand name and/or business niche as we describe below.

3) Products/Services

What is it that you’re offering to your customers or clients? Figure out how to work that into your domain. For example…

  • Hockeynets.com
  • webdesigners.com

Obviously these shorter product based names may be taken, unless you get more specific with names (bestcheaphockeynets.com). Here’s where combining with location and brand name come in handy.

  • Davidsplumbingbrooklyn.com
  • Miamijetskis.com
  • Organiccoffeetoronto.ca

The choice is yours to make. Just make sure you don’t pick anything too long, as this will appear spammy to your website visitors.

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