Picking a cool website name that fits your business or service can be both nerve-wracking and fun.
It can also be somewhat difficult, especially if you aren’t that creative or are just simply having some decision paralysis and can’t pick between some great options.
To that end, we’ll take a look at some things you should consider before picking your website name, so that it not only matches your needs but also helps grow your business into the future.
Length and simplicity
The first thing you’ll want to keep in mind is that websites with long domain names suffer. Not only are they harder to remember, but people might also sometimes get a letter wrong.
There’s also the possibility that a competitor might have a similar name, or might even try and grab a similar one in the hopes of attracting any potential visitors that would have come to your site, so make sure to grab your domain name quickly.
Similarly, you’ll want to keep the domain name simple. There is a propensity for people to want to pick unique and interesting sounding domains, which is understandable, but sometimes that can be to their detriment.
This can be especially problematic if it’s an attempt to do a play on words that some might not get, so don’t assume cultural understanding or native proficiency of the language.
So to sum it up: you should keep your website name easy to remember, pronounce, and spell.
Brand and keywords
Another important factor is figuring out what your brand is, what it stands for, and how you’re going to market it. When you do, it’s going to help you figure out a cool name for the website, even if it isn’t exactly the name of your business.
The truth is, it’s likely somebody owns the domain that you’re thinking of, so always make sure to see if and who owns the domain. This will help you avoid stepping on toes, or using a name that is too similar to a competing brand.
You will also need to consider things like keywords and how they relate to your brand. There are a variety of ways to do keyword research that can help not only give you more traffic when your site is up but also to help you figure out what name you should go for.
Again, the focus isn’t necessarily on using your exact business name, but to find something similar enough that is a popular keyword and can attract lots of visitors.
And once you find a domain name you like with a good keyword, act quickly on it. According to Freshbooks, you should expect to pay $10 to $12 to register your domain name for a year. That’s a small price to pay for a domain name that will essentially become the name of your online brand.
Avoid hyphens and double letters
One thing that should certainly be avoided is using hyphens in any shape or form. Not only are they incredibly prone to typos by a lot of people, but website names with hyphens have some history of being spam websites, and you don’t want that associated with you.
In a similar vein, you should absolutely avoid double letters, especially in consecutive words, although double letters in a single word can also be problematic.
To give you an example, something like pressstart.com would be a nightmare to not only type out but to also remember, not to mention it just looks weird, and that’s not the type of memorable you want.
Use prefixes and suffixes
While it’s generally a bad idea to use any hyphens or double letters, there’s no reason why you can’t modify your domain name with a prefix or suffix, especially as it applies to your niche.
This can help you stand out compared to the competition, while still giving you a similar website name to your business or brand, so it’s a win-win situation.
Also, consider adding a modifier to your domain name. For example, there’s a difference between Samsung.com and SamsungElectronics.com. Both domain names are for the same company, but one would give you the impression that it’s the organizational website, while the other is clearly about their electronics.
You can add that sort of modifier to your domain name too, although you should try and keep it as general as possible to keep your options open down the line. If you’re having a hard time doing that, consider using a website like Thesaurus.com to come up with synonyms that might fit.
Use a domain name generator from Zyro
If you’re still having trouble coming up with a good website name, you can always use Zyro’s domain name generator.
It’s pretty easy, all you have to do is enter a few keywords related to your brand name, and the AI will automatically come up with a few simple suggestions. It will even let you see what it will look like with different TLD extensions so you can get a feel for it.
Once you’ve picked one you like, you can pay for it right then and there and go on to create your very own business website. You can also use Zyro’s premium plans that provide you with a free domain name and includes a website builder to make things much easier for you.
And as web developer and online marketer Gary Stevens from Hosting Canada notes, once you have a domain name selected you’ll have essentially set the foundation for your new website.
General tips for website names
- Consider local or non-traditional TLDs. While it’s generally a better idea to go with a .com or .org TLD, it might not be available for the domain you want, so consider some of the other TLDs, especially ones that might fit your niche, such as .space if you deal with a lot of space-related content.
- Leave the opportunity to expand. If your website name is too specialized or exact, you might have a hard time expanding into different niches once you become more successful. Always try and be as general as you can.
- If your business is using the website to specifically sell a product or service, consider making the name a call to action or just active in general. Take for example something like FashionNow.com or VacationNow.com, both of these either call to action or are immediately reminiscent of the industry they work in.
- Avoid using colloquialisms, or cultural-specific names, unless they relate to your business. Oftentimes these can be hit or miss, and they can definitely contribute to typos and missed opportunities.
- If you’re going to use a phrase, make sure it’s a short one. Again, having a long domain name can be very problematic, especially if it’s not immediately memorable.
- The most important thing is to run your website name through a spellchecker, and then proofread it again to make sure. There’s nothing worse than making a typo and then having to live with it forever.
- Finally, keep in mind that it’s not important that you get a perfect website name. You might end up chasing that perfection for so long that you miss out on a great domain name, or maybe even never get started in the first place, so try and avoid the trap: good enough is good enough.