Want to buy a name for your website that will give your brand-new business a boost? Think of this as your all-you-need-to-know website name education. Here we run through everything from how to buy a website domain names, to working our way through some tips for website/business name coherence.
Seven fast tips for buying a website name
- Start by choosing a powerful business name
Your website name and your business name MUST align (ideally they should match EXACTLY). If you’re struggling for inspiration, read our guide to coming up with a catchy business name.
- Keep it short, keep it simple
Forget about creating a brand-new word for your business name (even if your initials would look really cool merged together). Adopting this approach to your branding can mean that you need to sink significant budgets into getting your name out there and ensuring that it sticks in the mind of your target customer.
You should also only combine two words where some meaning is still clearly retained (think Compaq (computer and pack); Verizon (veritas and horizon); Netflix (Internet and flicks) and Amtrak (America and Train tracks).
Go for a maximum of two words and two syllables (research show that the vast majority of the world’s most profitable companies are those that follow this golden rule).
- Avoid slang terms
When buying a web name avoid slang terms. Just because a word may be commonly used, doesn’t mean that the entirety of your target market will recognize it (this is especially true if you’re marketing to multiple countries, where slang terms may not easily translate).
- Forget about hyphens and numbers – they’ll probably confuse
www.confusingdomain.com or www.confusing-domain.com? www.1gooddomain.com or www.onegooddomain.com?
When it comes to hyphen and number use in your website name, strictly avoiding them is advisable, as recalling whether a domain has or doesn’t have a hyphen, or has a written or character number, is an easy way to frustrate your visitors before they’ve even landed on your site.
- Don’t buy a domain name that’s intentionally similar to an existing website
Don’t even attempt to gain online traction by opting for a minor alteration to an existing website. Doing so will only taint your brand before you’ve so much as bagged your first customer (and yes, that includes website names that just add an ‘s’ onto the end, such as copying www.greatwebsitename.com to make it www.greatwebsitenames.com).
- Opt for a .com
After a massive addition of website extensions, you have more choice than ever before as to how your website address ends – from .accountant to .zone.
So which should you choose? We’ll make our answer simple – .com.
.com web names instantly command trust and authority and will never be mixed up by confused past visitors who try to return to your site only to enter .co.uk, .net or some other extension.
- Check for trademark conflicts before buying your website name
Just because you can buy a website name, doesn’t mean that it’s legally OK to use. If you buy and use a domain with a registered trademark, you could quickly find yourself in legal trouble. To check whether a domain is trademarked, undertake a search at the Trademark Electronic Search System.
Key question: How do you check website name availability?
If you want to know whether a domain name is available, you could simply run a search on a domain registrar website. Such sites will return either an ‘available domain’ message or, if the domain is unavailable, it will present alternatives. These alternatives to your preferable site name will either include different word/letter combinations in the website address and/or different domain extensions.
For example, you check whether a web-site name is available by typing in www.isthisdomainavailable.com. As it isn’t available, you might be presented with the following options…
And so on.
Key question: how to buy a website name?
You have several options for buying a business name…
- You could purchase your domain name from the company that hosts your website
- You can use a domain registrar
- You can purchase from a domain marketplace – such as brandnic
So which is the best option for buying a web name? While choosing a site name from your hosts could save you a few minutes, you should also consider what will happen in the future if you need to move hosting (which is an all too common occurrence, as many business owners discover their hosting to be problematic). You’ll also be restricted to domains that aren’t as yet registered, as opposed to aged domains that could give your business a powerful kickstart (learn more about buying aged domains here).
For these reasons ambitious business owners often turn to domain marketplaces to find their website name – it cuts out the limitations to the domains that you can choose, as well as the never-ending searching.
The final benefit of buying your business-boosting name from ourselves ties in nicely to our closing tips on how to come up with a catchy name.
How to come up with a good website brand name
While we’ve created a step-by-step guide for coming up with a business name, you may want to save yourself some time and a lot of frustration. Brandnic is a hub of snappy brand names, which are packaged with a visually striking logo, domain and trademark protection (applicable for brand names priced above $1500).
So the savviest owners will by-pass our website name tips, and simply cut to the chase – buying their business name in one rather clever move. Ready to discover your brand? Search by industry and then by niche (we’ve even saved you a few clicks – jump straight to the names you need)…
Business & Finance Domains
Accounting | Business | Construction | Consulting | Financial | Marketing | Organization | Real Estate | Sales
Dating | Event | Feedback | Film | Fun | Multimedia | Music | News | Production | Shopping | Social | Sports
Health & Beauty Domains
Animal | Beauty | Energy | Fashion | Fitness | Food | General | Green | Health | Manufacturing | Medical
Arts & Design Domains
Apparel | Art | Auction | Blog | Community | Crowdsource | Design | Education | Photography
Travel & Construction Domains
Adventure | Automobile | Children | HR and Recruitment | International | Latin | Operations
| Reference | Travel
Tech & Web
Collaboration | Hardware | Internet | Mobile | Network | Search | Security | SEO | Services | Technology | Telecom
4 – 5 Letter Domains