Creating a new website consists of many different concepts. What style to use? What colors? What about the biggest decision of all? The domain name could be the most important of all these elements. When it’s time to choose a domain name you have two general approaches. One is to try and create a domain name that matches what people are searching for when they look for a product or service. The other is to create a brand identity with a domain name. We will discuss both approaches and the pros and cons of each.
Lets suppose that we want to create a website for a company called Henderson Auto that provides auto repair in Dallas, TX. Let’s say we did keyword analysis and discovered that when folks search they use “dallas auto repair” when looking for that service. We could use a exact-match domain or use the business name for our domain choice. If we assume we’re not restricted to a .com choice, then combining a geographic position with a service works great. The address www.dallasautorepair.com is sure to get noticed for that phrase. In this case, since our domain name exactly matches a search, the customer website will see an increase to their search ranking. This is due to the relevance in the domain name searches being performed. Of course there are many variables used to determine your page position and this is only a single component.
There are also negatives associated with domain matching a search phrase or term. For one they’re somewhat limited to the audience they gain. “If a customer with a matching name wants to expand and the new service may not make with the existing name,” says Francis McEwan with a NJ SEO Company. “It’s also not possible to create a brand name with an matching domain.” Also, domain names are sometimes associated with sites that display advertisements.
The choice also exists to create a non-matching branded domain name. For a company named Tiny Treats, the obvious choice is tinytreats.com, the name of the company. This creates a clear brand name for a customer who visits the site or wants to visit the site again. Think of companies who have huge branded domain names like Amazon or Google. These names have nothing inherently associated with the services they provide, yet they create a clear brand image. There are also methods of overcoming the non-matching nature of a branded domain name. Typically, a customer may create internal search-matching URLs. For example, tinytreats.com/nyc-cupcakes. Here the URL can still provide some search benefit but the domain still creates a brand name.
I think most people would want to use a branded name as a domain but often choose a matching name to help their on-line visibility. A site will certainly see a positive gain in the search results from doing so. While these gains might be short-lived due to other search factors, it’s evident it helps to some degree. Customer will also find that the obvious domain names are already taken and be forced to create a branded name or risk a silly URL as a result. Ultimately, the domain name should fit a customers needs regardless of which approach.
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I hope that you enjoyed reading this article.
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Reginald Liggins is an internet marketing trainer and coach who resides outside of Portland in Beaverton, Oregon.
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