Think about your business long term
Buying domain names isn't as straight forward as you think and it certainly isn't like it was in the beginning.
Domains or "web addresses" have been snapped up in their millions over the years and finding a suitable domain is becoming increasingly tough. To start with and if you haven't done so already, see if your full name is available and buy it.
When I went to buy my personal domain name many years ago, the .co.uk version had gone but surprisingly they hadn't bought the .com version so I snapped it up.
I also bought domains for both of my children's names. When starting out with your online business, it is important to think about the end product...
Let's go through those...
What is your website and/or business about?
We will go into niches a little later but for now, you have hopefully got a niche in mind. Is it something with longevity that you can run indefinitely? Is it a passion of yours? Maybe it is something you are currently studying?
Think about the core purpose of your website and business and look for a domain that relates to that. For example, let's say you are in the dog training business and you want to build your online presence on that.
This is a highly saturated market so many of the domains will have gone such as:
Think long tail (excuse the pun)
Here are some other domains available at the time of writing that may work for dog training:
So you see there are a few dog training domains available. Some are cheap and some are a bit pricey but it all depends on how big you intend to grow your site.
There are no doubt other domains available for a lot cheaper than these. Have a look at GoDaddy yourself and maybe even try slightly longer or more niched down domains such as:
You may already have some sort of brand in the form of a product you are selling or company name:
If you already have branding, buy or build your domain name around that. If you don't, perhaps try to invent new words rather than settling for boring, generic names like some of those above.
Think about Apple, Facebook, Yahoo, Bing, Google, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube and so on.
Before they became big, none of us would have known what these companies do but we sure do now! That is branding and the less characters in your domain name or branding, the better.
Invent a word such as Ginksa and see if the domain is available. Note: At the time of writing it is and for a whopping £0.99p. Ginksa.com...
You may have some crazy, wild new game that you have just invented and have been thinking of a new, memorable name? Maybe Ginksa.com could be a website all about travel and Ginksa is the name of the character you invented for the site?
Perhaps they like a tipple (Gin & Tonic) in every place they visit? Maybe you are looking for a brand name for your new Gin?
The Long Haul
Before buying your domain name, think about the future. You don't want to stifle your business by using a domain that is too niche. For example, if you currently sell pool tables, don't necessarily jump for baizepooltables.com for instance (available at 99p ; )
What if one day you also start selling other pub and club games such as dartboards, Space Invader machines, fruit machines and so on?
In that case, go for something like pubclubgames.com (available at time of writing for 99p ; )
Of course, these are all silly examples but you should get the gist.
Be proud of your domain
When buying domain names, think about this. Would you be happy saying the domain to people over the phone or in public?
Would they understand it? Does it sound "phonetic" (i.e. it spells as it sounds) so people will know what to type in Google etc? Is it memorable?
Will it fit on a small business card?
At the end of the day, the domain isn't the most important part of your business but it must make sense. I also recommend choosing a .com, .net, .org or .yourcountryextension (i.e, .co.uk). Avoid the strange new breed of extensions such as .tech or .ninja.
Note: Only choose your country's extension if you are locked into that country. For worldwide domination, go for .com wherever possible.
Before moving on to the next part of the course, which you will receive access to tomorrow, do the following. Spend some time thinking about buying domain names, branding etc and buy your first online business domain name as soon as you can.
This will be your first investment into online marketing. By doing this, you have taken the first step and in a small way, made yourself accountable. The longest journeys start with the first, single step.
Now you have chosen your domain, let's move on to choosing the best web hosting services...