When you start your own B2B business, you will need to make a lot of decisions about your website. One of the first and most important decisions will be what domain name you choose. This is something that needs to be well thought out.
Your domain name is the first thing potential customers see and it’s what determines whether their opinion of your business is positive or negative.
It might seem impossible to find the perfect and cheapest domain name, but as long as you know what makes a domain name good and memorable, you won’t have any issues.
Decide Between Branding and Discoverability
The domain name you choose should draw visitors to your website, be unique and show off your brand. To determine whether you should focus on branding or discoverability, you need to decide how you want to get traffic to your website.
If you’re working hard on drawing attention with methods such as social media marketing, affiliate marketing, and pay-per-click advertising, branding is the better choice for you. On the other hand, if you’re prioritizing SEO and working on getting organic search engine traffic, you need to work hard on discoverability.
How to Focus on Branding
Having a brandable name as opposed to a generic one means it is unique and can help your website stand out from the crowd. These names don’t have a descriptive meaning, but it is recognizable and people will instantly be able to tell it’s your website.
You can use the name of your business as your domain name, but you can also create your own word to be even more unique. Most successful websites that focus on branding made up their own names such as Google and Facebook so it can be a wise decision to learn how to pick a brand name first.
If you don’t want to make up your own word, you can use a thesaurus to come up with interesting and uncommon words that fit your brand.
Whatever you do, just don’t choose something that’s too complicated so customers can still remember it and get a general sense of what your business is about.
How to Focus on Discoverability
If you want to start a good marketing strategy that will get your B2B website noticed among an endless number of competitors, you should focus on discoverability.
The best way to do this is by using targeted keywords in your domain name, which will tell Google and other search engines that your website is exactly what your customers are looking for.
Do keyword research to find out what your ideal customers search for and try to incorporate some of those keywords into your name. Just make sure that those words flow well together and actually make sense, otherwise you’ll just be guilty of keyword stuffing.
The ideal choice for B2B eCommerce websites is to have a domain name that optimally combines both approaches by building a recognizable brand upon an easy to discover, relevant keyword.
Avoid Long Names at All Costs
It may seem tempting to create a long domain name that’s brandable and has perfect keywords, but that will actually hurt your business. When it comes to domain name length, there are many different reasons why short is always better:
- Short names are more memorable. A good domain name is memorable, and you can’t expect users to remember a name that’s too long and contains more than two or three words.
- They’re easier to pronounce. Sometimes your domain name will be shared by word-of-mouth, and it’s much more likely a short name can roll off the tip of your tongue more easily than a long name.
- There’s less room for human error. It’s very easy to make a mistake when typing something, but the chances of mistyping and making mistakes increase with the number of characters in your domain name. And if a user mistypes just one character, they’ll be led to a completely different website.
- Your website will seem more trustworthy. Most reputable websites have one thing in common and that’s short domain names. If you want to improve user experience and show your website is trustworthy, stick to a short domain name.
The most common domain names are about 12 characters long. When you’re choosing your name, try to keep it between 6 and 14 characters long.
Choose the Perfect Domain Extension
Before you settle on a domain extension, you should know that there are probably a lot more choices than you thought. The most common and most popular extension is “.com” with over 37% registered domains.
This extension would be a good choice, as it’s not only popular but also more trusted by internet users compared to less frequently used extensions. Additionally, people usually automatically type “.com” when they visit any website, especially if they’re not tech-smart.
However, just because it’s so popular, you might have issues registering your domain name with that extension, as many good ones are already taken. Since you’re creating a B2B website, you can also choose a domain extension such as “.org” for large organizations, the generic “.biz” or “.site”, or “.io” for technology businesses. If your business is geographically-limited, you may go for national extensions like “.eu” for Europe.
But this should still be seen as a plan B, since it’s best to secure a domain name with the “.com” extension. If you can’t register your name under “.com” or a relevant/local extension, it’s much better to think of a new name than register the name you came up with under a strange extension such as “.space”.
Know What to Avoid
A lot of good domain names are already taken and it will probably require a lot of creativity to come up with a good domain name you’re happy with.
It can be frustrating when you think of the perfect domain name that unfortunately isn’t available and in these situations, people often look for compromises. Making compromises usually entails adding elements that shouldn’t be in your domain name just to come up with something that’s available.
- Hyphens. Domain names with hyphens are usually used in spam domains which aren’t something you want to be associated with. Additionally, if you use hyphens to change a domain name that’s already taken, most people will forget to type in those hyphens and end up on your competitor’s website.
- Double letters. Another way to increase the chances of a potential visitor mistyping your domain is by using double letters. Not only will this type of name lose you a lot of traffic due to mistyping, but it will also be harder to pronounce and less memorable.
- Homophones. Two words that are spelled differently but sound the same when they’re pronounced are called homophones, like for instance “see” and “sea”. Use words whose meaning is perfectly clear, as homophones will also lead to mistyping.
- Numbers. Unless you’re using a very common numeric term like for instance “24/7”, there should be no room for numbers in your domain name, since numbers can be confusing. People don’t know whether to spell them out or write them numerically, so it’s best to just avoid them.
Research the Name You’ve Chosen Before Registering It
Another reason why you need to be completely satisfied with the domain name you choose is that you will have to use it for a very long time, most likely for as long as you have your website. Changing a domain name is not only expensive, but it will also cost you your SEO ranking and branding.
That’s why it’s important to do research on the name you’ve chosen, and not only to see if that particular domain name is available. Just because it isn’t registered doesn’t mean it’s a good fit for your website or to be used in general.
The first thing you need to do is find out if the name isn’t already copyrighted or trademarked by a different company. If it is and you still register it, you can face a lot of legal troubles and lose the domain name. For example, it is not legal to register domains containing“WordPress” as this is a trade name owned by Autmattic.
The next step is to check if the name you’ve chosen is being somehow used on any social media platform. To build your brand, you need to have the same name on social media platforms as well as your website, and that won’t be possible if your domain name is already being used by another company.
Register the Domain As Soon as Possible
The internet is growing at a rapid pace with over 1.74 billion websites published, and thousands of new ones being created every day. And with every new website that’s created, a new domain name is taken as well.
Domain names are in very high demand and you need to register your name as soon as you come up with the perfect one.
Another reason why it’s important to act fast and register as soon as possible is that there are bots that use your creative powers to come up with domain ideas and purchase domain names someone has searched for online. They do this so they can re-sell the name to you or somebody else later, at a higher price. The reality is, even if your perfect domain name is available right now, it soon might not be.
Choosing the domain name for your B2B website is an overwhelming process that you will probably struggle with until you find the perfect one that fits your business best. However, once you settle on a name that fulfills all of the criteria you just read about, you will have a domain name that your customers can’t forget.