Choose your domain name

If you read my last post you will now know how important it is to start a web site business about something that you are passionate about. There’s no point trying to do something you know nothing about or are not interested in, you will most likely become bore and quit after a few weeks.

So you have your topic sorted, next up is the domain name. Picking the right domain name is one of the most important choices that you make when starting your web business. It’s also one thing that is becoming more and more difficult to do. With the internet continuing to grow more and more people are registering popular domain names in the hope that they will sell them on for a profit. Indeed there are companies that do just that. I cannot tell you how many e-mails I have had from people trying to sell me domain names that relate to my financial trading site that I started. I just ignore them as I have no interest in paying more than I need to for domain names.

It’s important that you get the right domain name for your chosen subject. If you want to get your website noticed then you will need to submit it to be indexed in the major search engines. The most important one at the moment and most likely for the foreseeable future is Google. Love them or hate them Google is responsible for over 80% of all web searches and if you want to get your site noticed over the millions of others out there then you will need Google on your side. While you would think it would be simple to win the affection of Google it can be a bit of a mine field. Believe me my trading site was on page one for a host of highly competitive search terms until Google released their Penguin 1.1 algorithm update then almost 80% of my traffic dropped over night as I was de-ranked for these search terms.

There’s a practice called search engine optimisation or SEO for short. Good SEO is basically doing everything right that will match with Googles latest algorithm for ranking websites. If you can get it spot on then you will hit the top spot for your chosen search terms in no time. Get it wrong on the other hand and you will be left scratching your head on where you went wrong. I’ll be writing more on SEO as this blog progresses but the basics are simple. Google likes well written, unique content that will be useful to readers and is updated regularly. Sounds simple enough, think again. Google also takes into account the number of links that point to your site or web page, how they are linked (followed or noFollow) and the anchor text used when the link has been added. The penguin 1.1 update also took into account where the link comes from (i.e. is the website that links to you a spam website?) While bad inbound links to your site should do you no harm they will also do you no favours.

Anyway more on SEO etc in another post. Back to the domain name. So you need to think carefully about the domain name you choses as this will affect the whole look and feel of your site. Do you want to design a logo too? The domain name will have an affect on this also. You will also want to think about what search terms you would like to rank for in Google as the right domain name will help with this too.

So you’ve decided in which domain name you want, next up is what suffix do you want. Usually you want to take the suffix of the country you are in. If it’s US, then .com if it’s uk and so on. Now all you need to do is find the right place to buy it. (You can’t actually buy a domain name but you do rent it on a yearly basis.) One of the cheapest places I have found for domain names is UK Cheapest but there are plenty of other sites available all with different offerings.

So there you have it. Choose your right domain name as tomorrow we look at web hosting for your website.

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