30 Nov

How to Buy a Great Domain Name

Picking the right domain name can be crucial to the success of your business, buying the wrong one can create an unnecessary uphill struggle. Whether it is an online business or a real brick and mortar. Here are all of the things that influence the quality of a domain name.

  1. Length. Shorter is better. A short, easy to spell, easy to say, easy to remember domain name is the best. If it accurately communicates your product or service also, you have a winner.
  2. History. You may want to buy an old, previously owned or premium domain. Buying a new domain is the least expensive, so if you can find the right one, buy it. If you find a new domain, go to archive[dot]org to the Wayback machine and see if anyone had used it before, be careful, you don’t want someone else’s old baggage, but you do want any residual traffic if possible. Once you have selected your Premium-Domains-for-sale type in the word in Google search and see what comes up. Make sure you don’t create any battles or struggles you don’t need.
  3. New or Premium? A Premium domain may be worth it. If you have done your marketing homework and come across a perfect domain and the only thing that is holding you back is the cost begin negotiating, it may be worth it. That being said, there are usually other options if you can think outside of the box, stretch your imagination and think of other domain names if you cant afford the one you want. Premium domains on GoDaddy[dot]com will usually sell for about 70 percent of the asking price. Private negotiations, with the actual owner of the domain may yield even better results. Just move slowly, don’t get too excited, don’t let them know you have any money and could take it or leave it, but try to close the deal.
  4. Sound. One of the first thing I found myself doing a few years ago, after purchasing a domain and creating an entire website, was telling people my website address over the phone. This is not a big number thing, but happens frequently enough to have a real impact. Three things effect this:
    • Meetings and mixers. At some point you will meet someone for lunch, give a presentation, meet on the phone, speak before a group or a mixer. Hopefully you give your cards out. Inevitably you will find yourself telling people the address of your website.
    • Incoming phone calls. You don’t know how someone has heard of you, they may have met you at an event or mixer and just got your phone number. Believe it or not, some people still prefer to make a call in lieu of or in addition to visiting a website
    • Email address. The same verbal rules apply to email addresses. If you are going to setup email addresses associated with your domain, you will have a repeat of giving out your domain name. Remember, nobody likes something hard to understand, and just one character misspelled in an email or domain means they don’t find the site or the email doesn’t go through, especially with email. There are no suggestions for incorrect spellings of emails yet.Make sure to pick a domain people can understand easily over the phone, verbally and in person.
  5. CostGive yourself a budget. You are better served if you realize you are in a real business with real expenses. A domain name is like the front of a ship, the entry into your business. This is something you are going to hang your hat on for a long time. Years ago, it was easy to get a very good domain for not much money, times have changed. You can still buy two-word domains at a reasonable price, I would not recommend using a three-word domain if not absolutely necessary, I would pay the extra money for a shorter, two-word domain. Paying for the ownership of the domain should be a one-time cost, you should only pay the yearly renewal fees to the registrar (like GoDaddy) from then on. Your new domain should also bring however many years it was registered for with it. Google the word Whois to find a website that can tell you who owns a domain and how long it is registered for.
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