How to Uncover the Best Domain Name for Your Business
A domain name is essential for anyone conducting business online, so ensuring you make the right choice is vital. As the number of registered sites continues to grow, however, it becomes harder to uncover your preferred URL. The typical process is to brainstorm ideas, check their availability, and register the new domain, but other options can have their advantages. By using all the possibilities available to you, it is possible to find a domain that is right for your business.
Alternative Ways of Finding a Domain
Aside from finding a new, unused domain, there are a few options available to you. Each and very day, numerous domains expire after their owners decide not to renew them. These expired domains are available at the same cost of a new one, dependent on the domain extension, and might have been authoritative sites in their previous incarnation. Using tools like DomCop or Fresh Drop, you can find quality, relevant domains for a low cost, basing your decision on the site metrics of your choice.
Auctions are another option, with prices usually higher for the best domains. Auction sites, including examples like Sedo and GoDaddy, frequently update their domains, allowing you to filter for your preferred site. Auctions are essentially the same as expired domains, but they are often of a higher quality. The domain name itself will usually be desirable, often with a limited number of characters or a potentially brandable URL.
The final option is to buy from a marketplace or private seller. A site like Flippa offers auction facilities, but there is usually also an option to buy at a fixed price. Buying in this manner can provide you with an established site that, in some cases, is already earning revenue. This option might be more expensive, but it reduces the amount of work required to launch the site.
Reasons for Using These Options
These options might not suit every purpose, but there are very convincing arguments why they are worth considering. An established, older domain should come with authority, assuming you research before you buy. Authority is important for SEO, particularly as the search engines are taking longer to index and rank sites that are new.
Established sites can also receive traffic. Older sites usually have links from across the web, so a site in your niche might provide some relevant traffic immediately. This traffic, assuming it is relevant to your site, can be used to make some immediate income.
Finally, a carefully selected site can give you a branded identity and reputation. A good brand can have a distinct name, but it could also be based on a prime keyword. Good keywords and phrases stand out in search engines and paid advertising, giving you an instant reputation.
Before purchasing a domain, it is important to carry out due diligence. One common problem is finding out too late that a domain has a spam penalty. If a site is active, search for the URL in Google to ensure it appears in one of the top positions. If the site has expired, don't expect it to be indexed, but you can use the Wayback Machine to check for any suspicious activity. Also, check for any irrelevant anchor text in the backlink profile. These are signs that there could be a problem with the domain.
When buying a site based on authority and quality metrics, ensure you have analyzed the site data available to you. Page Rank is no longer the best metric to use, but Trust Flow from Majestic and Domain Authority from Moz are fairly accurate. The data should be used to give you a rough guide, making the buying decision a more informed one.
If you are purchasing an existing site, make sure you get access to accurate traffic and income data. Without this data, working out a fair price will be difficult. A site owner should have no problem giving you this access, so ensure you are informed before buying. You can also get access to site data from sites like Alexa and SEMrush.
Finally, check that you are not infringing any copyright with the domain name. It could be that the name is a registered trademark, but the site has been moved to another URL. You could be forced to take down the site at a later date, so it is better to do the research in advance.
Your domain name will come to represent your business, possibly for many years, so it is worth spending time on your decision. There are numerous domains available for purchase, but your choice will be dependent on your business focus and budget. Consider how you want to get traffic, how much you can afford to invest, and whether you require an existing business. By following the right plan, finding the right domain will be a smooth process.