How To Choose The Right Domain NameEver wondered how to choose the right domain name for your Internet business?

Choosing a good domain name can make us gripe especially in terms of SEO. What I mean is when you want to have your Site Concept keyword in it as well. Depending on your site’s theme, the domain name may become very long, making it difficult to remember properly.

Let’s say you target the audience of tennis, therefore your Site Concept keyword (i.e., the keyword you focus on on your site) may be tennis. is already taken, so you end up searching for a good alternative. And to decide upon that alternative may take a little while.

Here are the rules I follow when searching for profitable domain names in my Internet business endeavors…

  • If possible, include your Site Concept keyword. It shall give you a 20% ranking nudge in terms of SEO.
  • Keep the domain name as short as possible. Every character counts (more often than not!)
  • OK, I agree it depends on your Site Concept keyword, because when that is “bed and breakfast” you already have three words—15 characters—plus any additional characters that make the name fairly long already. Still, keep it as short as possible or word of mouth may not work so well.
  • Use a memorable, perhaps even remarkable name. Is it easy to remember? Or do people ask you several times to repeat the name?
  • Is it easy to spell? The more difficult it is to spell the more names you’ll need to register (in order to “get them all”.) Speaking of which…
  • How many equivalents does it “contain”? For a good live example… You do know the most popular video sharing site, don’t you? Yes, Now, did you ever happen to enter instead? I assume lots of people do. Go to and take a look at’s 3-year history graph. (Link goes to alexa; once there click on the “3y” link in the history graph.) Speaks volumes, doesn’t it? So make sure you register the “misspelled versions,” too.
  • Does your name stand out from the name crowd? Does it have some sort of uniqueness? Google was fairly unknown five years ago. Nowadays?
  • Does the name make people click through to the site? Is it “attractive”? Are they curious to know what’s behind it?
  • Is it “you”? Does the domain name describe you in some way?
  • Does the name convey a clear message? Does it give them an idea of what to expect once they clicked?
  • If you use 2 or more words, register both the hyphenated and the non-hyphenated version (using the non-hyphenated version for the content site.)
  • The best TLDs regarded by surfers are .com, .org, or .net.

Here’s an Exercise…

With three (or more) possible names in hand, ask 20 people for their opinions in terms of memorability, uniqueness, and meaningfulness.

The results may surprise you. ;-)

(It took me 2-3 months before I decided upon I had a bunch of shorter names, but surpassed them all big time.)

Using Two Domain Names?

Some folks say one could register a longer name for the Search Engines and a short “non-keyword” name for use on business cards and in e-mail.

Hmm, just imagine this…

You hand out the shorter name that has no content but simply brings visitors to the longer SE friendly name with all the content. Though, these folks may only be aware of the shorter name, so they start linking to that one. What happens?

SEs assign PageRank (PR) values to that shorter name. Although it has no content, yet still, folks link to it. (SEs seems to love honest human activities like this.)

With this in mind, I would use only one domain name in both cases so I don’t miss out on any “link love gifts.”

Bottom Line?

Keep it short. Make it memorable. Make people want to click through.

The most important of all though is to do proper market and keyword research BEFORE you register a domain name for your Internet business!

—Marcus Hochstadt

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21 Responses to How To Choose A Good Domain Name

  1. I like the idea about running the domain name by your friends in the real world first. They will oftentimes be the most honest with you, and if they don’t get the “wow” factor, then who will?

  2. blogzilla says:

    I would agree and as a domain god of sorts the 2 things that are most important is length of name, and ease of remembering.

  3. monaco says:

    hey thanks for the tip. I’m thinking of getting my own domain for my site and this post is a big help.

  4. @ AL, yes I figured that too. They may not only be the most honest with you, they may give you additional ideas beyond our own point of view. You are excited about your choices, but are they?

    @ blogzilla, ease of remembering and to remember it correctly, even after a couple weeks or months, is the key, right?

    @ monaco, glad I could be of help, and thanks for stepping by. Much appreciated.

    And thank you,, for the link love. :-)

  5. zirpy says:

    hello Marcus, thanks for the tips.. I’m looking for a good domain name right now, as I get a free for life domain name when buying my hosting package.. your writing helps!

  6. Gary says:

    I think picking a brand name is of far greater importance than picking a domain name. Flickr, Google, Yahoo have no meaning whatsoever outside of their brand. They have nothing to do with their respective categories.

    Most people do not type in domain names directly to get to content. You find content via links, searches, bookmarks and RSS.

    Most good domain names have long since been picked over.

  7.… sounds like a neat name. Let us know what your new one is going to be, zirpy! :-)

    Gary, an important thing with brand names is the marketing. If one does not market the name who will know it? Still, I agree it is an important factor when looking for a good new domain name for ones Internet business.

  8. Bontb says:

    I blog about money for few years now, and also recently I started to make some decent money from buying .coms etc.

    I like your post yes SEO and Keyword does bring traffic and you have better chances to rank with your domain “name” for certain keywords.

    Just few days ago I started project called Make Money Online Professionals. I already placed hidden blog where “Money Making Bloggers” like your self submit posts and such.

    What do you think of domain

    I think that is the best domain I ever bought “for my self” and project I am putting together.

    Hidden blog can be found at /blog :)

  9. Gamer says:

    Good advice..when I first started I got domains that didn’t represent what the site was about.

  10. Luke says:

    This is fun. I deliberately picked a cheap, unassuming domain name as a challenge. That way if it does go good, I’ll know it was not due to the domain name, but because of my skills as a blogger.

    Anyway, I was on an intention-manifestation craze that week (in December), and figured on a managable-sounding yet practically impossible goal of increasing my income to $10k/week *that week*. Now I look back and laugh, but the goal is still there in the domain name, tantalyzing me…

  11. Your .pro domain looks promising. Way to go, Bontb! :-)

  12. Bontb says:

    Thank you Marcus :)

  13. Bontb says:

    I was wondering If you would let me guest post on your blog?

  14. […] about your domain name? It should be short, sharp, and very easy to remember. Avoid using hyphens, as these are awkward to […]

  15. bleuken says:

    I have this blogs with the same firstname on its domain name (,, etc.). Recently i get a paid domain name (w/c is, i’m using it as my personal site. now my question how do search engines prioritize the sites on SERPS? on my observation, the older free blog is more prioritized than my new .com site. How much time i need to wait b4 my new domain over take my old blogs? I don’t want to erase the old blogs.

    thank you in advance!

  16. yorkteam says:

    Hello, Appreciate it if anyone can advice for a suitable project idea for this domain name

  17. Naruto Kun says:

    Most people do not type in domain names directly to get to content. You find content via links, searches, bookmarks and RSS.

  18. To choosing the domain name is the depend upon the business  we are provides the cheapest domain  registartion in India 

  19. Thanks for sharing this post. now i got the key areas to consider in mind while choosing for a domain name for my online business.

  20. While choosing a domain name you should also make sure that it should be easy to remember.

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