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The 10 Characteristics Of Good Domain Name

Domain names are like the real estate property of the Internet. You invest in them wisely overtime and it can yield you profits. But if you really want to see your domain name as a good investment then you must know how to choose a good domain name. That is why this post will be helpful for you to understand what are the elements of a good domain name.

Characteristics of Good Domain Name

Characteristics of Good Domain Name

They have a .com extension

This is for me the most important characteristic of a good domain name. There are so many blogs out there that are suffering because they do not have a .com extension. Moreover, most people hardly type extnsions – they press “ctrl+Enter” after they type the domain name which automatically adds a .com extension.

Example: One of the prime example which illustrates the importance of .com extension is the unfortunate case of “zenhabits”. Leo Babauta is one of the smartest bloggers on the internet today. He created zenhabits.net to form a 10k readers blog in a span of six months. But he does not own the .com extension of his domain name. As a result the guy who purchased zenhabits.com is living the internet lifestyle thanks to the misdirected web traffic who think Leo’s blog ends with a “.com” extension.

It is a gist about the site

A good domain name can tell the visitor in a gist what the site is about. It helps further your credibilty. It is ideal to have a site name which is a really descreptive to your niche.

Example: The best example I can give you about a domain name that speaks about the site niche is – “dailyblogtips.com”. Daniel Scocco runs this blog and his blog is exactly what his domain name says – blogging tips for you daily.

It is Short

Now I will be practical here. Short domains are all taken. In fact, all 4-letter domain names are exhausted and the 5-letter domains are also quickly becoming unavailable. Considering that a short domain name can be defined as one which is easy to remember. Perhaps by combining two words or two well-known slangs. The benefit you get from a short domain name is that it becomes easier for a visitor to recall your website.

Example: A good example of a short domain name is – “www.music.com”. However, it is impossible for you to find such domain names. So that is where short domains name like “www.youtube.com” and “www.facebook.com”, come in handy.

Easy To Spell

Do not consider everyone on the internet as highly talented as you. Some domain names will always force an error out of most typists. Avoid losing out on valuable visitors because William Shakespear suggested a word for your domain name. Use simple words to create an good domain name.

Example: Most sites are examples of an easy-to-spell domain names such as “www.allseotips.com” whereas, it becomes difficult to spell for a person when there is a name such as “www.1stwebdesigner.com”. Also such names become long and winding for an user.

No Hyphens

This is a very important characterics of a good domain name. Blogs who have a hyphen are usually signing their death wish. People think that hyphens are the quick fix solution to an unavailable domain name. Its not that they are impossible to use, but with hyphen your life as a webmaster would be much harder than it would have. People will generally forget to put the hyphens in between the word and end up somewhere else.

Example: More than 2.5 million users visit “www.techie-buzz.com” every month. Now if you forget to include the hyphen, then people will end up at “www.techiebuzz.com” – which is a parked domain name (having zero content) having an Alexa rank of 298,517 – this Alexa rank is higher than sites that have a lot of content in them.  The rankings are high because of all the misdirected traffic that should have reached the original “www.techie-buzz.com”.

They contain related keywords

A domain name containing the related keywords that you intend to target will also help your search engine rankings. Google places a lot of importance to keywords that exist within the domanin name. A site which may not be having a lot of backlinks but still contains the keyword would be ranked higher on the search engine.

Example: If you happen to search for the keyword “blogging tips”, the site which is placed first in Google is “www.bloggingtips.com”. After that, it is Darren Rowse’s (God for Blogging Tips) site – “www.problogger.com”. Now if you  analyze the backlinks to both the sites, “www.bloggingtips.com” has 64767 backlinks and “www.problogger.com” has 434143 backlinks to it. Now there is no comparison of “bloggingtips.com” with “problogger.com” SEO-wise but yet, Google ranks “www.bloggingtips.com” higher than “problogger.net” for the search term “blogging tips”.

Its Not Your Name

Alright, this one can be a tough one to explain to you. It is great if you want to register the domain name for your name. Something like “www.adamsmith.com”, but you should remember that, if you are planning to make money out of your site, either from selling, blogging etc.- then you should use a no-proper noun domain name.

Example: Your name as a site does not look professional unless you are Matt Cutts (www.mattcutts.com/blog) or Guy Kawasaki (blog.guykawasaki.com).

It Is Sociable

Considering what the internet is today, a good domain name does not en with its usability. The domain name must also be socially usable. You have to check whether the domain name you choose has Twitter handle, Facebook username etc. This will boost the value of your domain name.

There should be no doubt in your mind, this point is one of the lowest priorities as compared to the above points.

Brandable

Now when you follow the above tips, more often than not you will end up with a pretty brandable name. Brandable domain names are name that are really catchy and simple for your visitor. It sticks to your mind. There is a reason why Google is great domain name – it is simple and interesting.

Example: I feel when it comes to coming up with brandable and good domain names Neil Patel is the man. He is a genius blogger and entrepreneur. His blogs “Quicksprout” and “www.crazyegg.com” are examples of brandable domain names.

Finally…

Make sure that YOU like the domain name, even if you have to skip a couple of points from above. There is something about a domain name that you really love. The level of attachment is something else.

Example: There is a secret behind the name of my site “www.collegefallout.com”, it stands for my decision to almost drop out of college to pursue entrepreneurship. But the name is rather covert and most would not be able to derive the name, yet, I am happy with it. Another popular example is Harsh Agrawal’s extremely popular blogging tips/technology blog – “www.shoutmeloud.com”.

I hope this post has been the ultimate guide for you to choose a good domain name. I would love to read your views below.

About Vivek Krishnan

I am the Founder-editor of Collegefallout.com. I started this blog in 2009, while in college with a lousy internet connection. Today this blog receives over 30,000 page views per month. As a person, I am a wanderer, dreamer and part-time pessimist.

6 comments

  1. Short – yes
    Easy to spell – yes
    Related keywords, can help with minor SEO – yes

    .com – what! really? What about .co.uk and .org and .net?
    hyphens are a no no – honestly?

    My top level domain name is http://www.christopher-roberts.co.uk/ and that isn’t really suffering from not having .com, and from using a hyphen.

    I have three sub-domains, .blog./, .technology./ and .philosophy./ – all of which are doing pretty well.

    I see what you mean, .com is easy to remember, and hyphens can be easily missed, but 1) are there not exceptions? 2) How many people type out a web address anymore? I don’t very often, searching or favourites is where I go to.

    Apart from my few points, a very good article :)
    Christopher Roberts´s last blog post ..Thought for the day 3rd of January

    • @Christopher- Yes, I agree that hyphens and the extensions do not really affect a domain name’s effectiveness. This post tries to deal with an “ideal” domain name characteristics. Thanks for your valuable feedback Christopher.

  2. Right, ideal… I see what you mean, I like my christopher-roberts, but its probably because I am used to it. I am not sure wether the domain was taken without the hyphen when I origionaly got the domain, but I am not going to change it now :)

    Thanks for the quick reply :)
    Christopher Roberts´s last blog post ..Mini Supercomputers of the Future

  3. What about a name like Eve’s Ecstasy ? is that a good brandable name?

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