Before Buying a New Domain
A domain name is more than just a web address. It’s your online identity, your brand name, and your first impression to your visitors. Choosing the right domain name can make or break your online success, so it’s important to do some homework before you register one.
But what exactly should you do before buying a new domain? How can you find the perfect name for your website, avoid common pitfalls, and protect your brand online? In this article, we’ll share some tips on what you should do before buying a new domain name for your online project.
Tip 1: Check the Competition
One of the first things you should do before buying a new domain is to look at the domain names of competitors and leaders in your industry. This can give you some inspiration and ideas on what keywords, phrases, and extensions to use for your own domain name.
You can also use tools like SimilarWeb or ahrefs to analyze the traffic and popularity of different websites in your niche. This can help you identify gaps in the market, find untapped opportunities, and avoid choosing a domain name that is too similar or confusing with an existing one.
Tip 2: Make It Easy to Type and Remember
Another important factor to consider before buying a new domain is how easy it is to type and remember. You want your visitors to be able to find your website easily without making spelling mistakes or forgetting the name altogether.
To make your domain name easy to type and remember, follow these guidelines:
- Avoid using slang, abbreviations, numbers, hyphens, or other symbols that might cause confusion or errors.
- Use simple and common words that are relevant to your niche and audience.
- Keep it short and catchy. Ideally, your domain name should be no longer than 15 characters.
- Use phonetic spelling if possible. For example, use “flicker” instead of “flickr” or “express” instead of “xpress”.
- Test your domain name with friends or family members. Ask them to spell it out loud or write it down after hearing it once.
Tip 3: Choose the Right Extension
The extension is the part of the domain name that comes after the dot (e.g., .com, .net, .org). It can have an impact on how people perceive your website and how well it ranks on search engines.
Before buying a new domain name, you should choose an extension that suits your purpose and audience. Here are some common types of extensions:
- Generic top-level domains (gTLDs): These are the most popular extensions that can be used for any type of website (e.g., .com,.net,.org). They have high recognition and trust among internet users.
- Country code top-level domains (ccTLDs): These are extensions that represent specific countries or regions (e.g., .uk,.ca,.au). They can help you target local audiences and boost SEO rankings in those areas.
- Niche-specific top-level domains (nTLDs): These are extensions that relate to specific industries or topics (e.g., .blog,.shop,.tech). They can help you stand out from the crowd and convey more information about your website.
Depending on your goals and budget, you may want to register multiple extensions for your domain name. This can help you protect your brand from competitors or cybersquatters who might try to use similar names. You can also redirect all the variations of your domain name to one main website.
Tip 4: Check Social Media Handles
Before buying a new domain name, you should also check if the same or similar names are available on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn . Having consistent social media handles across different channels can help you build brand awareness and credibility online.
You can use tools like Namechk or KnowEm to check the availability of social media handles for different platforms at once. If possible, try to secure all the major ones for your brand before someone else does.
Tip 5: Avoid Trademarks
The last thing you want is to get into legal trouble over your domain name. That’s why you should avoid using names that are already trademarked by other companies or organizations. This could result in lawsuits, fines, or losing your domain altogether.
Before buying a new domain, you should do some research on trademark databases like USPTO.gov or WIPO.int to see if there are any existing
trademarks that match or resemble your desired domain name. You should also avoid using names that are too generic or descriptive, as they might not be eligible for trademark protection.
If you are unsure about the trademark status of a domain name, you can consult a lawyer or a domain name expert for advice.
Tip 6: Check Spam Score and Domain Authority
Here are some frequently asked questions about what you should do before buying a new domain name.
Q: How much does it cost to buy a new domain name?
A: The cost of buying a new domain name depends on several factors, such as the extension, the registrar, and the duration of registration. Typically, a new domain name can cost anywhere from $10 to $50 per year. However, some extensions or premium domains may cost more.
Q: How long can I register a domain name for?
A: The maximum length of registration for a domain name varies depending on the extension and the registrar. Generally, you can register a domain name for up to 10 years at a time. However, some extensions may have shorter or longer limits.
Q: How can I check if a domain name is available?
A: You can use tools like Domain.com or Namecheap to check the availability of any domain name in seconds. Simply enter your desired name and see if it is available for registration. You can also see other suggestions or variations of your name if it is already taken.
Q: How can I transfer my existing domain name to another registrar?
A: If you want to switch your domain name provider, you need to follow these steps:
- Unlock your domain name at your current registrar.
- Request an authorization code (also known as EPP code or transfer key) from your current registrar.
- Enter the authorization code at your new registrar and initiate the transfer process.
- Confirm the transfer via email or phone verification.
- Wait for the transfer to complete (usually within 5 to 7 days).
Buying a new domain name is an important decision that requires some planning and research. By following these tips on what you should do before buying a new domain, you can find the perfect name for your website and avoid common mistakes and issues.
Remember to check the competition, make it easy to type and remember, choose the right extension, check social media handles, and avoid trademarks before buying a new domain. This way, you can ensure your online success and grow your brand with confidence.