Is it easy to spell?
One of the biggest problems with many domain names is that people can’t remember them and can’t spell them. If your domain could be in any way misleading, misremembered, or misspelt, then you probably want to consider a different domain name. You’ll miss out on a huge amount of traffic if people don’t bother typing your domain name into the address bar of the browser. You want to maximise your returns on investment with all brand awareness marketing and so you need a domain name that can be easily typed into that bar.
Is the domain extension that I’m considering known and trusted?
There really is a hierarchy of domain name extensions. At the top is.com, which is the hardest place to find a name available. Then there come.net and your country level domains such as .co.uk, .co.nz, and .ca. However, there are a whole range of new domain names that have come out onto the market such as.shop,.Moby,.taxi,.marketing,.London and so on.
People will intrinsically trust the domain names that they know better. That might mean that getting a slightly inferior name with your brand name and a keyword in it might be better than getting a new extension that is just your brand name. You really need to think about how people are going to view your domain name with the extension you are looking to choose.
Are there brands with similar names to yours?
When choosing a brand domain name you need to look at what is out there already. If there is a scaffolding company with the name brandscaffolding.com, and you want to buy brandscaffoldinglocation.com, you are immediately starting at a disadvantage. You will probably lose referrals to the other company, and your brand will always struggle. Don’t go for an inferior brand extension or inferior name if someone else has got your brand name in your niche. The reality is it might be worth rebranding and thinking of building something unique, especially if you are early in your venture.
Is the domain name available on social media handles?
Social media may well become an important part of your business. Check that your brand name is available on different social media handle so that you don’t have to compromise on the identity you bring to social media. It’s a good idea to check your brand name for .com, country level domain, and social media handles before you move forward with your brand. Social media is extremely cost-effective and you want to give yourself the best chance of success you can.
Do I need multiple domain names?
There is a trend online of creating websites on single topics rather than across lots of topics in order to increase semantic relevance. You need to weigh up whether you want some different local websites, or if you want to target different topics on different websites on your brand. You don’t want to spread yourself thin if you don’t have the resources, and it is much easier to build one brand, but it’s worth considering the possibilities if you have multiple sites all targeting free specific niche and getting SEO benefit.
Having different websites can also make you more credible when you are advertising targeted landing pages on a pay per click basis.
These are just some of the questions that you need to consider when you are buying domain names for brands. You want to start off at an advantage rather than a disadvantage, give yourself the best possible chance of success.