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What's Good For A Domain Name?

Author: Richard Lowe

 

I have purchased a lot of domain names for many different

reasons. Sometimes the domain name is for a business purchase,

such as an ecommerce site. I have purchased many domain names

for simple personal reasons, and occasionally the purchase was

just to keep someone else from obtaining the name and abusing it.

 

 Personal Domain Names

 

There are many reasons to get a personal domain name. Sometimes

it's vanity, sometimes it's a hobby and occasionally the purpose

is more serious and purposeful. No matter what the reason, it's

important to get just the right domain name to portray exactly

the desired image. Remember, the domain name is one of the first

things seen by your visitors, and it tells a lot about you.

 

Many people like to purchase their name as a .COM address. My

friend James Huggins (http://www.jameshuggins.com) has done

this, as have my wife (http://www.claudialowe.com) and myself

(http://www.richard-lowe.com). This is a a fantastic way to get

people who know you (or know of you) to your site. They simply

know your name.

 

If the .COM version is not available, you can check for the

other domains: .NET, .INFO, .BIZ, .ORG, .US (for US citizens) or

.WS. There are also many country codes available (.TO for Tonga,

for example), and occasionally these are available to anyone

without restriction. Other times, they are only to citizens of

those countries.

 

In my case, I tried to get the .COM version of my name, but some

scum domain name scavenger had purchased it. He would happily

sell it to me, he said, for the small sum of $350. Yeah, right.

I went ahead and purchased the hyphenated version instead.

 

A new option which is pretty cool is the .NAME domain name.

These are intended for names only, in the format first.last.name

or last.first.name. I went ahead and purchased the names of

myself (http://richard.lowe.name) and my wife

(http://claudia.lowe.name). This makes it very easy to find our

personal web sites.

 

You can also purchase domain names which describe your interests

or hobbies. For example, we purchased

http://www.lowefamilychristmas.com to describe our Christmas

experiences, and http://www.claudiasrecipes.com to show off

Claudia's recipe collection.

 

I had an idea last year to get something special for my wife on

our anniversary (in addition to jewelry, of course - I am not

stupid). I decided to purchase some domain names for her -

http://www.iloveclaudia.com and the .NET, and .ORG versions as

well. I loaded the site with other pages and things that had

been made for her over the years. A very unique present.

 

 Business Names

 

So you've been working hard on your web site making it perfect.

You've surveyed your market, analyzed their requirements,

designed and coded a killer site, and now it's time to cut it

loose on the world. It's time to do some promotion. After all,

it does not matter how good a site is if no one visits.

 

An important part of your promotional plan should be the

purchase of domain names. You will need at least one, as it's

considered extremely unprofessional for a business to have a

presence on the internet without one. And with domain names

available for $8.95 a year, the lack of one cannot be justified

financially.

 

What kind of domain name should a business acquire?

 

The business name (of course) - The simplest thing to do is to

simply get the name of your business as a domain name. If you

cannot get the .COM version, check for the .NET, .ORG, .BIZ or

.INFO versions. This is the domain name that would typically be

used for marketing and branding purposes.

 

Hyphenated business name - You can also get the hyphenated

business name, if the name is two or more words long. You should

only get this if (a) the name is not available in it's

unhyphenated version or (b) you bought the non-hyphenated

version as well. It's not a good idea to get only the hyphenated

version, as this is not something customers normally type in

URLs. It is, however, a good idea to purchase the hyphenated

version in addition to the non-hyphenated version as sometimes

people do type in the hyphens.

 

Keyword domain names - Another option is to purchase domain

names which are keywords which match search engine keywords. For

example, if your site sells candy, you could get the domain name

candy-chocolate-lollipops.com, candychocolatelollipops.com or

something like that. Some search engines do use keywords within

domain names to boost the ratings of a site. Some companies like

these types of domain names - personally, I feel they are a

little tacky and unprofessional.

 

Product Names - One possible strategy is to purchase domain

names for each different product or product classification that

you want. You could then set up separate, distinct sites for

each of these.

 

Product Lines - If you company sells distinctly difference

product lines, you might want to create different sites for each

of them. In this case, you will want different domain names for

each one.

 

Business Units - I've seen some companies which purchase a

domain name for each of their different business units.

 

 Other Reasons

 

There are other reasons to purchase a domain name.

 

Keeping others from getting the name - Sometimes it's important

to purchase a domain name just so someone else will not get it.

In this case you might want to purchase "yourcompanysucks.com"

and variations of the same (AOL found out the hard way about the

importance of this some years ago).

 

Search Engine Optimization - I've heard that some people

purchase a lot of different keyword-style domain names with the

objective of linking them all together. This serves to convince

search engines link Google that the keywords in the domain names

should appear higher in the listings. This is a gray area, as it

may be considered search engine spamming.

 

 

About the author:

Richard Lowe Jr. is the webmaster of Internet Tips And Secrets

at http://www.internet-tips.net - Visit our website any time to

read over 1,000 complete FREE articles about how to improve your

internet profits, enjoyment and knowledge.