8 Tips for Choosing a Better Domain Name for Your Website

8 Tips for Choosing a Better Domain Name for Your Website

If you don’t already have a domain name for your website (or you’ve never liked the one you have), here are eight tips on how to choose the best domain name that will help your site get found and help you get more business.

  1. Choose more than one.
  2. Don’t stop at one.  We recommend you purchase your own personal name, your kids’ names, your company name, and keyword variations.  Your webmaster can point them all to the same website.  Please note that when you are optimizing your site for search engines (and for email), you should only choose one domain or you can get penalized.

  3. Grab your personal name.
  4. If your name is not available, try variations such as bethmillercpa.com or bethamiller.com using your middle initial.

  5. Purchase your company name.
  6. If you can’t get your exact company name, try putting LLC or Inc after it.   You can also try adding “filler” words like company, online, or services.  Examples include:

    Rainbowaccountinginc.com
    Sunshinebookkeepingllc.com
    Jonessmithtax.com
    Bethsbookkeepingonline.com
    BalancedBookscompany.com

  7. Don’t abbreviate.
  8. Shorter is never better when it comes to improved branding, better search results, remembering, or greater clarity.  I started out using slscpa but sandismith is so much better.   It’s much harder for prospects to remember abbreviations than it is the full word.

  9. Use keywords.
  10. If your city and your service are available as a domain, grab it!  That’s gold.  Examples:

    Dallascloudaccountants.com
    Austinbookkeeping.com
    Chicagotaxprep.com
    Houstontaxresolution.com

    You can also use highly specialized areas with words like “help” or “I need.”

    FBARhelp.com
    IneedTaxrepresentation.com
    Cloudaccountinghelp.com

    But watch for copyright violations.  You CANNOT use the trademark QuickBooks or even QB in a domain, according to Intuit’s terms of service.

    Some of you will think these look less professional, and you would be right.   But they also work, and if your site is extremely professional, you might be able to pull it off.  Do stay up to speed on any advertising restrictions of your state board licensing agency.   For example, in Texas, a CPA could never get away with a domain like “Taxexperts.com.”  The word “experts” is a superlative and is not allowed in any description of a Texas CPA firm.

  11. Dot-com is the bomb.
  12. Don’t buy .net (that’s for internet service provider companies exclusively), .org (only for nonprofits), or anything except “.com.”  Just save your money; there’s absolutely no reason to purchase other domains unless you are in another country besides the U.S. and in that case you can get the country suffix.   It’s better to get a “.com” with a filler word than a “.net” with your exact company name.

  13. Don’t overpay.
  14. Stay away from higher cost registrars like www.register.com and www.netsol.com.  They’re just overpriced form the “old days” (around 2000) when domains used to be $35 per year.

    Also, don’t bother with private registrations or other bells and whistles.  They’re almost impossible to get cancelled (you have to send an affidavit) and there’s no return on investment.  Just say “no” to all those automated upsells.

  15. Oldies are goodies
  16. If your domain is over five years old, don’t switch!   Google ranks older domains higher, so switching to a new one could badly damage your rankings.   If search engine optimization is important to you, check with an expert before you make any changes to your domain.

Try these eight tips for a better domain name and better search results for your website.

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