Tips for choosing domain name from experts

Avoid trademark infringement

You have to be careful because it's not whether you think your domain name could be confused. It's whether you think a judge in a jurisdiction, where a company might take legal action against you, would consider your domain name confusable. This can also create brand confusion, which is hard for your brandability. You should talk to an attorney or a legal professional if you have real concerns. Trademark owners can attempt to sue a domain name owner, who's owning the domain legitimately and using it for business purposes, and that sucks. - Rand Fishkin - Moz


No numbers or hyphens

Numbers and hyphens (especially hyphens) cause confusion. Stay away from them at all costs. Even something as clever as the number1website.com will cause confusion. Make the name speak for itself. - Ogi Djuraskovic - FirstSiteGuide team


Make it easy to type

If your URL is hard to type, people won't. Difficult words to spell and long URL strings can be extremely frustrating to your end users. Sure, you may be able to add a nice keyword with a long URL, but if the user experience is negatively impacted, you'll ultimately suffer. - Ryan Shelley - Search Engine Land


Beware of trends

Anything that deals with something trendy will, like the trend, fade away. Stick with a classic name that will span the generations and not be tied down to a trend or fad. Deciding whether something is a trend or here to stay, is a matter of personal judgment, but it's usually not too hard to tell. - Ogi Djuraskovic - FirstSiteGuide team


Check social networks

Before you register your desired domain name, it's always a good idea to check social networks for the same name. To keep your site name constant and to build your brand, you want a name that is readily available. For example: check facebook.com/yourdomain, twitter.com/yourdomain - and secure them as well. KnowEm is a great tool to use to see if certain names are already branded on social platforms. - Ogi Djuraskovic - FirstSiteGuide team


Be Careful When Buying Existing Domain Names

As I mentioned a couple of points above, buying an existing domain name is a bit different from buying a new one. First of all, since it's not new, this means it already has a history. And you can never be entirely sure what that history is. On the bright side, the domain's history may give you a boost in Google since you're not starting from scratch - Google already knows the domain. But, on the flip side, if the domain has featured any kind of 'non-kosher' stuff (porn, gambling, spam content, email spam distribution), then it may be banned from Google entirely. Buying your domain from a marketplace such as Flippa gives you some safety, since every domain is validated at least in the most basic way. However, to make things a bit safer, you should also perform checks of your own. First, do a manual check by going to Google and searching for: site:YOURDOMAIN.com This will tell you whether Google has any pages indexed from that domain. Finding anything is a good sign. It means the domain isn't banned. Not finding anything doesn't have to be a deal-breaker, though. If the domain is blank - no website - then there's nothing for Google to find in the first place. However, if there is a website but Google can't see it (via the site:YOURDOMAIN.com phrase), this is a red flag. You can also do checks via tools such as bannedcheck.com and ismywebsitepenalized.com. But also keep in mind that these things are not foolproof. Consider them helpers. - Karol K - Winning WP


Help Yourself to Some Domain Name Generators

This is another kind of helper that you can use if you're finding it hard to come up with a cool domain name, and thus, by extension, your business name as well. These tools are very simple to use, but also surprisingly helpful. All they need is one keyword from you - a seed keyword (or a seed key-phrase) - and, in return, they give you tens or even hundreds of suggestions, full of valid and available domain names that you can register right away. The best such tools include: LeanDomainSearch, created by the guys at Automattic (also known for WordPress.com). For example, this is what you get when looking up 'coffee': LeanDomainSearch Business name generator by Shopify works similarly to the above, and also helps you build a Shopify store with the domain name of your choice. Nameboy is a bit more old-school - especially in its design - but it's still useful. This one needs more specific input, and does a better job once you have a general direction you want to follow with your name. - Karol K - Winning WP


Easy to Pronounce

As easy as your domain name rolls off the tips of your fingers, it should roll off the tip of your tongue. This makes it easier for visitors to share your domain name by word of mouth, and makes it easier for you to share your site with friends and potential customers. You can test this the same way as with the 'spelling'. Write your domain name on a piece of paper and ask 10 people to pronounce it. If more than a few people struggle to pronounce it, you should simplify it. Here's what to keep in mind: You want your domain name to be passed along easily by you and others. And the only way for that to be possible is if it's 1) easy to spell and 2) easy to pronounce. - ROBERT MENING - WebsiteSetup


Stick with .com

There are plenty of new domain name extensions available today, from the original .com, .net and .org to niche extensions like .pizza, .photography, and even .blog. We always recommend choosing a .com domain. While it can be tempting to come up with clever blog names using new extensions, a .com domain is still the most established and credible domain extension. Newer domain extensions like .ninja or .photography can be untrustworthy. Dot-com domains are also the most memorable. Many users, especially those who aren't as tech-savvy, will automatically type '.com' on the end of every domain without thinking about it. If your website is something like jane.photography, and your users accidentally type in jane.photography.com, they will end up on an error page on photography.com. It's smart to avoid that risk by sticking with .com. Not to mention, most smart phone keyboards automatically have a .com button. - wpbeginner


Keep It Short, Simple, and Predictable

So, we already talked about brandability (if that's a word), but there are also some other, more general, characteristics of a quality domain name. The big four being: short - preferably with fewer than 15(-ish) characters, excluding the TLD simple - no hyphens, no underscores, no complicated words as part of the domain, or any other punctuation just words - avoid using numbers unless absolutely necessary (for example, if it's part of your brand name, such as 9gag.com) predictable - no weird spellings (for example, if your name is Myke and you want to make it part of your domain - such as MykeBlogs.com - every single time people will mistype it as MikeBlogs.com. - Karol K - Winning WP


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