Picking a domain name is no easy feat these days. With over 644 million existing websites online, sometimes it feels like all the good domains are taken. Don’t fret though; expired domain names are regularly released into the public, and there are still plenty of clever domain names that can be created with the right choice of words and domain extension. Follow these 8 easy steps and you’ll have a more awesome domain than thebomb.com!


1. Perform Market Research


One of the first things you should do when starting a new business or project is check out what already exists out there. What domain names are competitor’s using? Which taken domain names do you like the ring of? Which do you hate? The point of this step isn’t to copy what others are doing, but simply to gather inspiration and be informed of the landscape around you.


2. Use Keywords


Keywords tell customers and search engines what your website is about, and they often make it easier to remember your domain name. For example, if you own a grocery store, consider something like freshgroceries.com or localgrocer.ca. Keywords are a search engine’s best friend, so if you use them in your domain name your website is more likely to rank higher. When thinking of keywords, think of what a user would be typing into a search engine to find your business.


3. Make it Short and Simple


If your domain is long and complex, customers will not take the time to memorize it. Don’t use double letters like in webhostinggeeks.com as it increases the chances of a user making a typo and not finding your website. Numbers and hyphens are a no-no as well, as they’re usually associated with spam.


4. Make it Brandable


Although you may be selling one product at the moment, you never know if you’ll add new ones to your business down the line. By picking a domain name that will stick with you no matter what services you provide, your business has the opportunity to evolve.


5. Check Social Media Availability


Once you have a domain name, make sure to also claim the name on social media platforms. You can use a website like Name Checker to see if the name you desire is available both as a domain and as a social media handle. This will save you the heartache of finding out too late that your name is taken in some places.


6. Use “.com”


The most utilized domain extension is “.com”, so naturally businesses should lean towards it. However, there are some exceptions. For example, if you are targeting users in Canada, “.ca” will work better for you, or if you are a non-profit, you’ll most likely want to use “.org”

If you decide to use a less common extension, keep in mind that companies can charge up to $200 for a single domain extension. Domain extensions like “.tv”, “.info” or “.to” are more expensive than the more commonly used “.com” or “.ca”


7. Get the Right Price


Typically, domain names vary in price from $10-$20 per year, although some companies will try to offer them to you for a lot less while sneakily adding in extra fees or contracts.


8. Buy Several Domain Extensions


From time to time, users will mistype your domain name, which could potentially lead them to a competitor’s website instead of yours. To prevent that, you can purchase more than one domain extension, or even buy misspelled versions of your original domain name. Once you own these variations, you can have them forward to your main domain so that users land on the correct page.

Now that you know the steps you need to take to pick a domain name, why not sign up with Canadian Web Hosting and build your website today?