These days, any business that hopes to gain favor and succeed in building a name for itself must have a website. So, when you think about starting a moving company, you’ll need to think about creating a website as well. And choosing a domain name for your business is one of the most important things you’ll do when setting up your website. It affects the first impression you give your visitors, defines your brand, and even impacts your SEO. That is why it’s important to get it right from the start. In order to do that, you’ll need to know about the best and worst practices of choosing domain names.
Why is choosing a domain name for your business so important?
Your website is the key to your online presence. While you will almost certainly need to set up social media accounts and advertise on a variety of websites, your own domain is where you want customers to end up (especially if you’re doing business on your website by selling things or setting up appointments). Almost all brand development strategies for movers these days rely on a solid online presence centered around a website. Having a good name for that website is, therefore, crucial. Your domain name will, in many cases, be one of the first things people learn about your business. As such, it needs to reflect your brand and leave a good first impression. And while it is possible to change domain names later, you run a risk of negatively impacting your SEO. So, making the right choice from the get-go is essential.
Four tips for choosing a domain name for your business
Choosing a domain name is a process that can take hours and even days. During this time, there are certain things you want to keep in mind as guides. Here are the best practices when picking a domain:
1. Try to incorporate keywords in your domain name
Keywords are essential for SEO. You’ll use them on your homepage, when creating content, advertising your moving business, and more. So why not use them when choosing a domain name? The right keyword in the domain name will tell Google exactly what your website is about and thus help you rank higher.
If you look at the best moving company websites, you’ll notice that they all have some reference to moving, movers, or relocation in the URL. You should try to follow that example. Of course, it’s very hard to find a domain name with the most popular keywords that aren’t already in use. So you’ll need to get creative. Just don’t stray too far from your brand name – the website should, after all, be associated with your business above anything else.
2. Keep it short and easy to remember
According to past research, domain names that consist of 15 characters or less perform better than the ones that go over 15 characters. And this is a trend that the majority of websites follow. The reason is simple: shorter domains are much easier to remember and much harder to misspell. So, if you want people to regularly visit your website, you should choose something pretty short and to the point as your domain name.
3. Make it pronounceable and easy to spell
You may not think of your URL as something that requires pronunciation but it undoubtedly will. Imagine if someone calls your customer service – the representative must be able to clearly provide the URL to your customer over the phone. Perhaps even more importantly, if someone recommends you to their friends or family, they’ll need to direct them to your website. To do that, they need to be able to pronounce your domain. So choose words that are easy to enunciate clearly to avoid any confusion. Stick to things that are easy to spell as well – you don’t want typos to be diverting traffic away from your website, do you?
4. Keep it simple: use your brand name and a popular extension
The best way to create a domain name is to combine your brand name with a widely used extension (like .com, .org, .net, or .us). This ticks all the boxes: it’s short, to the point, and easy to remember. If your brand name is too long or the URL for it is already taken, don’t worry. You don’t have to match your URL to your brand name exactly. Our website, for example, uses the URL moversdev.com even though the full name of our business is Movers Development. It’s still close enough to our brand name to be recognizable and the fact that it’s shorter actually makes it easier to remember.
What not to do when choosing a domain name for your business
In addition to all the things that you should do, there is a whole slew of things you should most definitely not do when choosing a domain name. You need to be aware of these pitfalls so you can avoid them. So here are all the things that you shouldn’t do when picking your domain name:
Don’t use non-standard spellings unless it’s the name of your brand
Deliberate misspellings are a popular way to get creative with brand names. They can even help when choosing a domain name because misspellings are less likely to be taken. However, creative spellings are harder to remember and are often indistinguishable in pronunciation. Most people will assume the correct spelling which could divert traffic away from your website. So use standard spellings unless you have no other choice.
Hyphens are another thing that increases the odds of misspellings. People will often forget where exactly the hyphen goes which can lead them to a completely different website. Not to mention, hyphens are often used by knock-off and spam websites specifically trying to emulate legitimate brands. So they’re immediately suspicious.
Avoid partially copying others – aim for authenticity
There’s no risk of choosing a domain name someone else already has – that’s not possible. But you can still choose a domain name that’s close to something in existence. This is a bad idea for a number of reasons: users will have a hard time distinguishing between the two businesses, users may assume that you’re trying to copy or steal from another business, and you may get in trouble for using someone else’s trademark. So before you choose your domain name, do your research. Look up whether the phrase is trademarked and whether other websites are already using it. If the answer to either is yes, don’t use that domain name.
Always research a domain before buying it
Before you settle on a domain name, do your research. Check if the domain name is already in use. Then check whether it’s been used before – if you’re purchasing a used domain name, you’re also purchasing its history so it’s important to know what you’re getting yourself into. Finally, decide on whether you just want to purchase the domain name or if you want to buy hosting along with it too. If you’re starting a new website, you may want to splurge and get hosting as well – it’ll pay off in the long run. But research your hosting options first.
After choosing a domain name for your business: tips for setting up your website
Albeit very important, choosing a domain name for your business is only the first step to building your website. If you opted not to purchase hosting along with your domain, now is the time to look for hosting services. Look for something scaleable that allows you to grow and expand. Then, you’ll need to design your website. Keep it slick and simple; this is easier on the eyes and allows users to absorb content faster.
Finally, you’ll need to populate your website with content optimized for users and search engines. Create pages about your business and services and implement a content strategy. Even after your website is up and running, your work is not over – you still need to maintain it because an online presence requires constant work.