How to Choose and Purchase Your Domain Name
One of the very first steps you need to take when setting up your business online is to choose and purchase a domain name for your website. Buying a domain name is actually cheap and easy, but there are some things to consider when choosing the best domain name for your business.
If you have a domain name that gives people an idea of what it is that you're offering, it will make your site that much easier for them to not only find, but to actually visit. For example, the name of my website is www.ClientAbundance.com, so when people come across my URL anywhere, they can take an educated guess that what I'm offering relates to getting lots of clients.
This is what makes it so important to get a UNIQUE domain name, and not a sub-domain name (for example, www.WebHostingName.com/thenameofyoursite). And a unique domain name gives your website credibility and a much more polished and professional look.
Something else that's important for you to know is that once you purchase your unique domain name, you own it. So no matter how many times you change web hosts, you, as the owner of that domain name, have the right to take it with you. If you have a sub-domain with your web host, that web host actually owns the domain name.
And just as important, if you do end up moving your website to a different host, all your marketing efforts to date will not have gone to waste because your customers and clients will still be able to find you under your unique domain name.
Your unique domain name can be any combination of letters and numbers, but it cannot include any special characters, except for hyphens (because the search engines actually prefer hyphens!). It can be as short as two characters or as long as 67. The shorter and catchier your domain name, the more likely people will remember it. Just don't make it hard to spell... :)
Another strategy for increasing your search engine rankings with your domain name is to choose a domain name that includes the keywords that your niche is searching for. That's not always possible, especially as more and more people get savvy about internet marketing and snap up those domains. But search engines do give more weight to domain names that include keywords because they have higher relevancy to what people are actually searching for. For example, www.howtobakeacake.com would get higher search engine rankings than www.sweetsandthings.com.
One of the most frequent questions I'm asked is whether or not to register any other domain levels, like .net and .org. I always strongly suggest to get a .com first. If you don't, you are losing potential clients and customers. Most people (and web browsers) will default to a .com first. Remember, you always want to make it as easy as possible for people to find you online.
But, in addition, you should also consider buying the .net and .org domains as well, just so you're not losing traffic to another site with the same name but a different extension. And since domain names are so cheap, there's really no reason not to.
Another tip to consider is to purchase common misspellings of your domain name as well. For example, for my name (which I also recommend you register), I own www.aliciaforest.com and www.aliciaforrest.com.
Once you've decided on a domain name, you can check to see if it's available at www.powerpipe.com. If it is, you can register it there and park it for free for $7.99 per year. I've been using PowerPipe for over 5 years and find them to be not only extremely competitively priced, but also to have excellent customer service. They also offer a free domain name brainstorming tool in case you need it. (I don't get anything for recommending them; I'm just a happy customer).
So now you know what to consider when choosing your domain name(s), and you have an excellent resource for registering them. So don't wait any longer to claim your space on the web!
The Top 10 Web Hosting Companies
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