When creating a website, one of the first things you need to do is register a domain name for your business. It will become the address of your website that users will use to access it online.
What’s more, a domain name is an effective tool for building credibility, brand visibility, and increasing your search engine ranking.
This article will explain what a domain name is exactly and how it can impact your site’s SEO.
Let’s get started.
A domain name is the second level of a domain hierarchy. It’s a convenient way to point people to the place where they can find your website.
In the examples below, the domain names are bolded:
Because there are millions of domain names out there, finding a domain name that suits your branding and is available can be tricky.
Luckily, there are tools like domain name search Hostinger that can help you check whether the domain name you want is still up for grabs. If it isn’t available, the domain name search tool will usually provide you with great alternatives you can use.
Search engines do see keywords in domain names as one of their ranking factors. However, Google has been moving away from ranking exact match and partial match domain names better than those that are not. Instead, they focus more on anchor texts on your website.
To put it simply, don’t over-optimize your website to rank high on the search engine result pages, as that can affect the overall quality. And quality is always the priority when it comes to business websites.
TLD, also known as the top-level domain, is the last segment of your domain name, like the .com or .co.uk. There are multiple types of TLDs, but the most commonly used are generic TLD (gTLDs) and country-code TLD (ccTLDs).
Many people would recommend you always go for .com as your TLD simply because it’s the most used and memorable one, with around 52.5% of websites using it.
Users are more likely to type in .com after typing a domain name than other TLDs just because it’s the first thing that comes to their minds. Of course, this can help improve your SEO.
However, you’re not limited to just using .com as your TLD, as sometimes using a ccTLD can be more beneficial for your ranking. For example, you might want to use .uk if you’re based in the United Kingdom. Doing so will help you attract a local audience as search engines favor local websites before global ones.
To ensure that your domain name appears on search engine results and attracts more traffic, try to apply these SEO practices:
Your domain name is the first impression of your website. Thus you should make sure that it’s memorable and can easily be shared with other people.
Your domain name shouldn’t be difficult to understand. Instead, it should represent your business at first glance. So whenever someone types the name into the search bar, it’s the first suggestion that appears.
Make sure your domain name is not too short or too long. Ideally, it should be around 15 characters long. If it’s longer, it will make it harder to remember. Try to create something that’s brief but doesn’t take away from your brand name.
In most cases, a lot of the short domain names are already registered. If you can’t find any short options that would fit your niche, the following point below will explain how to get around it.
A brandable domain name means a name that will be uniquely yours. It should sound catchy, be memorable, and trustworthy.
For example, when you think of Coca-Cola or Pepsi, you’ll immediately know what they are. Both names sound catchy, are memorable, and have built themselves a recognizable reputation.
While coming up with a brandable name is more challenging than using generic words, if you’re able to pull it off, you will be able to rank high on that specific word.
It’s good practice to keep your domain name simple, easy to spell, and memorable. You should not use any special characters, like hyphens, numbers, and doubled letters, to achieve that.
Including them in your domain name will only make it more confusing and increase people’s chances of mistyping, misspelling, and making it harder to pronounce. This can result in unnecessary loss of traffic.
For example, hyphens and numbers are misspelled pretty often. When people memorize your domain name, they won’t know if they should use numerals (9) or spelling (nine). People also tend to misplace or completely forget dashes.
As I mentioned before, including a relevant keyword in your domain name will give a boost to your website’s SEO. You should only use one keyword in your domain name because using more than one could result in the search engines deeming your website unreliable.
Including more than one keyword can also cause your domain name to become generic, which will make it harder for your target audience to differentiate your website from your competitors.
When you’re inserting a keyword into your domain name, try placing it at the beginning of the name to increase your website’s chances of ranking higher. Afterward, add other words to make your website unique and brandable.
Now you know about domain names and their impact on your SEO.
Remember that domain names are an essential part of your website, and they help make the first impression when users first visit your site. You should take your time and conduct thorough research when coming up with suitable options to be able to narrow down your choices to the very best one.
Keep in mind that your domain name should be short, easy to spell, memorable, brandable, and preferably include a keyword.
If you’re ever stuck coming up with ideas, you can always use one of the many available domain name generators to come up with great name alternatives for your website.