A blog’s domain name is the first thing the audience encounters when they find the site. Therefore, it’s a crucial part of it, so focusing on picking the ideal one is essential. This guide offers all the information you need to know on the matter, including what you should and shouldn’t do, what to do if the one you want is not available, and much more.
What Is a Domain Name?
Domain names are an essential part of your blog. If you want to run your own website, coming up with the most convenient name for your domain is one of the most crucial parts of the process.
Essentially, domain names are what’s between the “https” and the “dot com” – this means that they’re probably what people remember when they first enter your site.
Initially, domain names did not exist. Each specific website was associated with an IP address and various numbers, for example, 184.108.40.206 – clearly, this was very problematic when millions of people started using the internet.
Using a domain name is much more straightforward and easy to remember than trying to recall a string of numbers. Thus, domain names are a crucial part of running a blog.
The Job of Your Domain Name
When beginner bloggers are trying to think of domain name ideas, they sometimes believe they need to be overly witty, clever, cool, or poetic. You might think you need to come up with the perfect domain name – something that matches Google or Amazon.
However, that is not the job of a brandable domain name. Instead, the purpose of a great domain name is to spark a personal and meaningful conversation with your potential readers.
At this point, you might be wondering how you might be able to do that. The answer is simple: you need to show your readers that they’re in the right place, and that’s only possible if you choose the perfect domain name.
Why It Matters
When you’re coming up with a brandable domain name, you might believe it’s only crucial due to its effect on search engines or because it’s your blog address on the internet world. However, it’s much more than that. Here are some reasons why it matters:
Domain names make a blog stand out from the competition. If you want a personal brand that’s different from all others, you need to pick the right name.
Your Domain Is the First Impression People Get of Your Brand
First impressions are important, especially online. You might not get a second chance, so your domain name must catch people’s attention, so they want to come back to your site again.
If you don’t have a straightforward domain name, your audience might forget it. Thus, they may not be able to go back to your site even if they want to. To find a way around that, you must make sure domain names are easy to find and remember.
What if You Don’t Know What Your Blog Is about?
On some occasions, people choose the wrong domain name simply because they don’t know what you should focus on when you’re writing. If you want to run a successful blog, you must make sure you have a plan and follow it.
Knowing what you want to write about is, on many occasions, more important than thinking about possible domain names. You can look at it this way: if you don’t know the angle of your blog, you can’t choose the perfect name for it.
Steps to Get Started
Since you shouldn’t try to pick any domain names before knowing the angle of your blog, there are a few things you should do first. Here are the basic steps to begin:
Choose the Perfect Niche
Firstly, you need to choose your niche. In simple terms, this means picking the topic area that you will focus on when writing.
Picking a niche might be a lengthy process for some, while for others, it’s relatively quick. It depends on the options you have and what you want to achieve. Overall, your niche should combine your passion and the possibility of monetization.
Decide Your Topic and Angle
After picking your niche, you must narrow down things a bit more. You can, for example, determine the unique angle you want to give to your content.
In many cases, people use their unique skills, experience, and knowledge to think of a one-of-a-kind angle to give to their blog. This is one of the best ways to succeed as a freelance writer!
Choose Your Target Audience
Generally speaking, you want to know who you will be talking to before buying your domain extension and choosing your web hosting service.
Your target audience is an essential factor to determine because it can change many things about your branding, including its colors, the logo design, etc.
Make a List of All the Words You Can Think of
If you already know who you want to write for and what you want to write about, you can start jotting down ideas. Choosing the best blog name is often a job that takes time, so you better get your creative juices flowing and list all the words you can think of.
To choose the perfect domain name, you should write down all the words you can come up with, but you shouldn’t write random terms. Instead, list numerous words that have something to do with your brand.
List Out Some Examples You Love
In this step, try to find at least 10 blogs within your niche. Write down the names and try to see which ones are interesting to you.
When you choose a blog domain name, it’s crucial that you check out the competition. There’s a lot to learn from what bloggers around you are doing, so try to see what you can take from their sites.
Start Coming Up with Names!
By now, you should be ready to start making a list of potential domain name ideas. Remember that this doesn’t have to be the final list – what’s important is that you get started.
Five Potential Mistakes of Choosing Domain Names
Brandable domain names stand out from the competition and also attract potential readers. Therefore, choosing the ideal one requires you to understand what to do and what to avoid. The following are some things you might want to evade:
Trying to Be Too Clever
A good domain name is straightforward, and people can quickly remember it. Being witty might be a fantastic skill in some cases. However, on this occasion, it can hinder your progress.
Blogs’ domain extensions should be easy to remember. If you go for something too complicated, people might not even know its meaning.
There’s a quick way to find out if you’re trying to be too clever. Talk to a few of your friends or loved ones, tell them the blog domain name idea you have, and ask them what it means.
If they don’t answer you in the first five seconds, it’s probably not the most convenient blog domain name. Alternatively, try to come up with something simpler.
Making Up a New Word
New words are fun, but most bloggers who use them for their site’s domain usually don’t have good results.
Inventing a new word means that anyone who reads it has to try and figure out what it means. Consequently, they may have to spend some time thinking it through. By the time they’re done, it might be too late – you’ve lost their attention, and now they’ve left your site.
Using the Subdomain of a Blogging Platform
Domain registration is a serious deal when you’re a blogger. Writers who use the subdomain of a platform risk not being taken seriously and losing all their information if the site ever goes down.
Beginner bloggers often want a free domain name, which is why you might think a platform’s subdomain is a convenient idea. However, it shows that you’re an amateur who’s not committed.
At the same time, if the platform crashes or changes its policies and decides to take your site down, you might lose it all.
Choosing the wrong domain name also means trying to be overly technical. Unfortunately, using abbreviations usually means only some people might understand what your name is about, and you don’t want that.
Overall, having an audience that understands what you write about sounds attractive. However, if you’re building up your blog, you shouldn’t limit yourself – you should try to attract as many people as possible.
Hyphens make domain names much more complicated to remember. In most cases, your potential readers will forget to use them if they type your site’s name in. Therefore, they might either not find anything when they look for your blog, or worse – they can go to a competitor’s website.
The Best Types of Domain Names You Can Choose
Now that you know what you shouldn’t do when you’re coming up with blog names, it’s time to take a look at some of the suggestions you should follow. Check out the next tips:
Name the Advantage
As was mentioned before, you need to cater to your blog niche. Your domain name must tell your people how you can help them.
Blogs like ‘imakealivingwriting(.)com’ are a fantastic example of this. It’s a straightforward name, and it quickly tells you what the blogger can aid you with.
Mention Your Audience
One of the best ways to cater to your audience is to mention them in your blog domain name. In other words, try to incorporate who they are into your site’s name.
Aspiring bloggers who randomly find sites like ‘problogger,’ might quickly understand that the website can help them go pro with their writing.
Name the Topic
Another fantastic way to appear in your potential reader’s Google search is to include the site’s main topic on your blog URL.
Domain names are tools, and you must use them to your benefit. If you include your blog’s theme in your URL, your site immediately has better chances of appearing in your potential audience’s search results.
All the tools you use for your blog have a purpose. In this case, a domain name that incorporates the topic of your blog guarantees that only the people in your target audience will stay on your site to see what you have to offer.
Choose Your Own Name
This tip is self-explanatory. A potential domain name is to choose your own name and use it for your blog’s URL.
There are advantages and disadvantages of using your name as your blog name. On the one hand, it’s the ideal strategy if you want to brand yourself and bond with your audience.
However, this process takes a long time. Furthermore, you can never sell it to anyone because it’s tied to you.
Mention What You Do
This is the opposite of naming the benefit. Instead of telling your readers what they can find when they enter your site, you describe what you do.
If you, for example, are a chef, try to incorporate that into your domain name. When you tell others what you can do for them, they might come to you because they need your services.
Brainstorm Fantastic Domain Name Ideas
To find a good domain name, you need to think about a few ideas. Once you know what to avoid and incorporate into your blog name, you have a clear path to finding the ideal option.
You should always remember that the best domain names are the ones that state the mission of your blog to the people it serves.
Ask yourself “what would my audience call themselves if they were a blog?” – then, come up with as many options as you can and try to see if it’s available on domain registrars.
Tips to Get the Best Name
Your blog name is one of the essentials of your site. Regardless of whether you want to make a living writing, get more traffic, find the most convenient business name, or become a blogging wizard, the following tips can help you:
Research Your Domain Name
All the tips and tricks you get to come up with ideas might help, but to get the best domain name, you need to do some research.
There are millions of domain names, but finding an available one might be tricky sometimes. To avoid issues, do some research and find your competitors – what names do they use? If you’re able, avoid coming up with something that’s too much like those.
Instead, think of a unique and memorable name. Make a list and check domain name availability, which gives you an idea of what you could use for your site.
20 Characters or Shorter
There are no rules when it comes to choosing a great domain name, but making sure it’s 20 characters or shorter.
Short names are easier to remember, and you want this if you want to guarantee that your audience comes back for more.
Avoid Confusing Letter Combinations
A good domain is straightforward, and anyone can quickly type it into the search bar. Therefore, you should try to avoid confusing letter combinations because your audience might not be able to remember them.
Some bloggers try to come up with the smartest blog name. However, during the process, they forget that personal brands should connect with people.
To choose the ideal blog domain name for your site, avoid making things too complicated. Alternatively, go the easy way and use simple words.
Make Sure it’s Easy to Pronounce
The best domain name is usually straightforward, and pronouncing it should be effortless. Write it down and show it to your loved ones – if they can successfully say it out loud, then you’re on the right track. If they can’t, you might want to think about other alternatives.
Generally speaking, the ideal domain name sticks in people’s minds. Think about your favorite brands – you can probably remember all their names. Therefore, you must make sure that yours is just as memorable.
Never Mention Brand or Trademarked Names
Using trademarked names is one of the worst mistakes you can make when you’re a blogger. Clearly, you can draw inspiration from an existing domain, but you should never take its name or parts of it.
You can come up with the perfect name for your blog, and if you can’t, then using a domain name generator is also a convenient idea. Avoid mentioning any trademarked names because you might get legal issues. Instead, be creative and unique with your blog.
Don’t Go Hard on the Keywords
If you know anything about search Engine Optimization or domain registration, you probably want to add a few keywords to your blog name to make it more relevant in terms of Google searches.
Even though this is essential, you shouldn’t use that many keywords. Relying on too many keywords to choose your domain name is a mistake because it can make the name too complicated to remember.
If you’re able to, you should certainly add one or two keywords into the mix. However, don’t go too hard on this, and never sacrifice a memorable name for a keyword-stuffed one.
Make It Specific, but Not Too Much
As was mentioned before, your name should cater to your target audience. Anyone who enters your blog must be able to see what you can offer, and you should make things as straightforward as possible for them.
Nonetheless, this doesn’t mean your name should be very specific. Think about it like this – if you choose something too precise, you might lose the opportunity to attract some clients.
When you’re getting started, you want to attract as many people as possible. Thus, pick something that allows you to cater to your audience without narrowing it down so much that you lose opportunities.
Stay with “.com”
Dot com domains are the most successful ones out there. Although there are other options, for example, dot net or using subdomains, the classic “.com” is often the most convenient alternative.
It may be fun to come up with other extensions. However, “.com” is still the most credible one, and building your reputation as an online authority figure is important. A dot com domain might help you with that.
Don’t Forget the Keywords
You might be feeling confused. One of the previous tips was to not use too many keywords, and this one is the opposite of that.
Running away and leaving your blogging dream behind might sound tempting right now, but you should remember that online marketing is all about balance.
All of this translates into one idea – you can (and should!) use keywords, but not too much. Incorporating one or two into your name can help you rank in Google searches and boost your SEO. However, never overuse them, especially if they make your name overly complicated.
Keep It Short
Short names are people’s favorites. Take a look at some of the most famous brands out there – Google, Amazon, Zara, Gucci, Coca-Cola. All of them have something in common: they have short names.
On many occasions, the fear of not being able to include everything you want in your name might overcome the crucial parts of the process. Thus, you may end with a long name that represents your ideas, but it’s too complicated to use for your blog.
Remember that your brand should make you feel passionate about writing and online marketing. Every blogger feels afraid at first, but you must try to keep things short and make sure that the name you choose is memorable.
It Must Be Brandable and Unique
The best way to make your audience remember you is to come up with the most creative and unique name you can.
Domain names should encompass a lot of things, but when it comes to branding, they must serve one purpose: to stand out in your readers’ minds.
Keep things simple and make your name unique by choosing catchy and memorable words. It might take some time, but in the end, it’s worth it!
Avoid Double Letters
These letters and symbols make names much more challenging for your potential readers. Remember – you should try to make things as easy as possible, not the other way around.
If you don’t want to lose traffic due to typos, avoid double letters. This also makes your domain name much more brandable.
Think about the most famous brands out there. Most of their names don’t have complicated letters – they’re straightforward and easy to write and remember. You should follow this advice if you’re starting to run your blog because you want to attract as many people as you can.
Leave Some Room to Expand
Choosing a very specific domain name might be fun at first, but if you want to run a blog for a long time, you should pick something more versatile.
A florist, for example, might choose the name “rosesblog(.)com” because they want to talk about roses. If they ever wish to address different flowers, the name can hinder the site’s ability to attract other potential readers.
If you want to nail your domain name choice, you should pick something that you can change if you ever need to. A flexible domain name is always a fantastic choice because you never know what can happen in the future.
You might think that the domain name you chose doesn’t exist because it’s immensely creative, but unfortunately, there are millions of people on the web.
Thousands of bloggers come online every day to learn more about digital marketing strategies for their blogs. If you want to stay on top of things and guarantee that no one else has the name you chose, you have to register through any of the domain registration companies that exist.
You should make your decision as soon as you come up with a few name ideas. To avoid someone else taking the name you thought of, register it fast and start blogging.
Should You Use a Domain Name Generator?
Using a generator for domain names is one of the most common strategies, especially for beginner bloggers. Generally speaking, it’s a fantastic option because it can provide you with various alternatives to choose from.
If you don’t consider yourself to be too creative, generators might be the ideal tool to keep nearby. You can just type the parameters in and the software does everything for you.
At the same time, people who already have an idea of what they want can use the generator to get inspired. In many cases, you might change what you had planned just because you felt inspired.
What about Using a Unique Domain Extension?
Remember that domain extensions should be straightforward as well. You don’t want to lose customers just because your audience is unable to remember your name, so stick with the better option, which is dot com.
Even though domain extensions are fun and convenient, they might not be the best option, especially if you’re barely starting to build your brand.
Extra Approaches to Choosing a Domain Name
By now, you know why your domain name is essential, what to avoid, and what to do to succeed when you choose it. However, there are a few more approaches to picking the ideal name, so here are some of the most interesting ideas you can try:
Take Advantage of a Clever Pun
Just because you should try to keep things straightforward doesn’t mean you can’t joke around. If you’re able to come up with a fun pun for your blog’s name it might be wonderful because it’s memorable and it also helps your clients connect since they might find it amusing.
Play-on words are a fantastic option if you want your name to stand out. A wonderful blog name is different from all other sites, even if the articles are about similar topics. Therefore, you should choose something that represents how unique you are.
Ask Your Friends
Sometimes, the ideal name is near you, and you just don’t know it. If your friends and loved ones know something about the blog topic you’re writing, ask them what’s the first thing they think of when they ponder on that theme.
Doing this is very helpful overall, regardless of whether or not it’s the way for you to come up with the ideal name. You’re getting input from potential readers who are near you, and the information you obtain is crucial for you to develop a content marketing strategy.
In many cases, when someone wants to register a free domain name, they soon realize that it’s taken, much to their dismay. When this happens, you shouldn’t despair.
Even though letting go of the fantastic name you had is challenging sometimes, you must be persistent if you want your blog to succeed. Instead of focusing on the fact that you can’t use that name, think about the rest of the potential options you have and try to use one of those.
Buy the Domain Name
There are thousands of domain names you can buy if the one you want is already taken. Fortunately, you’re able to acquire something if you want, so you should keep this in mind when you’re name-hunting.
Some people are in a niche so popular that it seems as though all the best names are occupied. Does this sound like you? If the answer is yes, then buying a domain name might be the alternative you’re looking for.
On occasions, people decide to sell their brands. In other cases, they rebrand their business and sell the previous name they had. Thus, you have a myriad of old names to choose from, and once you start looking, you might notice you can find hidden gems in the name pool!
Most Famous Domain Registrars and Generators
You can register a domain without purchasing web hosting, but for this, you must use domain registrars. Domain(.)com is the most famous one, and with this option, you get numerous domain names as well as tools to manage yours.
Asides from registrars, generators are programs you can use to come up with various name alternatives. Some people don’t like using them because they believe they don’t allow you to be creative, but in reality, it’s the opposite.
Using name generators is one of the most straightforward ways to get inspiration and ideas to come up with your own original names. At the same time, if you do like one of the names that the program offers you, hooray! You’re ready to register it and start running your blog.
Since generators are so popular, you should take a look at a list of the most famous ones. Here are the sites you should know:
- Codename Generator
- Cool Name Ideas
To Wrap Up
You have learned all the basics you need before you choose your domain name. All bloggers understand that this is not a straightforward process to go through. However, it can be a very fun one if you’re patient and focus on choosing something that can work on a long-term basis. Now that you know about the name-generation process, get started and pick yours soon!