How and Why to Choose a Domain

Search bar on virtual screenDomain names serve two purposes.  One, to point people to your online presence, and two, serve as an additional marketing tool. To make this month’s article really easy to read and learn from, I’ve created this chart of some fictitious (hopefully!) domains and critiqued them.



Rating: good

It is short, to the point, and most people have grown accustomed to this format. It is the most popular and people are most likely to use this format (name as one word, short, and .com).
Rating: good
Also short and to the point, this domain will be easier to read on a business card or printed material, and is great for search engine optimization purposes.  If you can get this domain along with the non-hyphenated version, it will be ideal.  Point the non-hyphenated domain to the hyphenated domain’s hosting.  This is called “parking.”  Another perk of having both is that when you have to verbalize the domain in either your ads or networking, you don’t have to say the hyphen.  I’m finding that many people don’t know what a hyphen is or where it is on the keyboard.

www.myentirecompanyname.comRating: tolerable
While on the long side, this domain will work in a pinch, but is definitely not preferred because of its length.  This is representative of formal company names and not the for-branding-purposes d/b/a’s. If you can get shorter, do it.

www.myentirecompanynameinc.comRating: pushing your luck
The length may deter people from wanting to email you, or visit your site, or at the very least, earn a groan of aggravation when they have to copy it into the browser bar.  Don’t do this to your prospects or yourself. If you have to try this hard to get your company name in a domain, look at hyphenated and shorter versions, as well as revisiting whether or not you’ve got the best company name. absurd
One hyphen is good, more than one loses its appeal.  People need to be able to verbalize your domain at times, and they won’t have an easy time if they have to say “my hyphen entire hyphen company hyphen name hyphen” Once again, don’t do this to your prospects or yourself. Look at shorter domains, or at a different company name if what you like is so popular that everyone else has it. Consider this: what will happen when your company is poised to take over the US market? You’ll have patent and trademark issues all over the place.

In conclusion, choosing a domain can be a challenge, but with a little knowledge, you can get the domain you should have. Think creatively, and if you find yourself with a stumbling block, feel free to give your friendly neighborhood ad agency a call.

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About the author : Vision Advertising

Vision Advertising is a full-service marketing agency enhancing the online brand presence of business-to-business and business-to-consumer companies across the US. We focus on providing custom marketing services to address unique client needs, customer profiles, and budgetary concerns, created in-house by our team of skilled marketing specialists. This author profile is used for deattributed posts or when content is posted to this blog without comment.