Table of contents:
- Using keywords in domain name
- Best domain extensions for SEO
- The best domain name length
- Domain name with or without hyphens?
Choosing a SEO friendly domain name is the first step that you need to consider when starting a new website.
Whatever you try to sell or promote, your domain name will affect your brand and image.
The domain name is very important and that’s the reason why, various companies have changed their brand name into the name of their domain names.
Using keywords in domain name
If you are not looking after a brandable domain name, it’s better to choose a SEO friendly domain name.
A SEO friendly domain name is a domain that contains chosen keywords for which you want it to rank in SERP (search engine results page) in its structure.
Or, you can even choose a domain name that combines SEO with a brand.
For example, let’s assume you own a furniture company (called Wood Masterpiece INC) and you want to choose a domain name for your website.
A fully SEO friendly domain name would look like furniture.com.
A brandable domain name would look like woodmasterpiece.com
While a combined domain name would look like woodmasterpiecefurniture.com
A SEO friendly domain name will rank easier than a domain name without keywords (assuming that both domain names are newly registered and have no backlinks ).
Best domain extensions for SEO
All those who seek to lay the foundation of an international brand are looking to register a .com domain name.
The “com” is a generic top-level domain and its name is derived from the word “commercial”. The .com extension has currently the the largest number of domain names registered.
Another advantage of a .com domain is that it’s easier to remember. If a client won’t remember the exact URL of your site, the probability is greater that he will first try to access yourcompany.com, rather than yourcompany.net or yourcompany.org.
Some people even believe that .com domains do best in search engine results. Personally, I can’t argue with this, because it’s true, the .com domain names rank very well in search engines, but in the same time it can be only a simple coincidence due to to the high number of registered domain names with this extension.
If you want to promote your company / product locally in a particular country, go for a domain name with your country extension. While a .com domain will rank better for Google.com, a domain name with your country extension will rank better for Google in that country.
The best domain name length
Even if you are looking for a domain name for your brand, or you are looking for a domain name that will contain your wanted keywords, stay away from too long domain names. In general domain names can be up to 63 characters long, but I do not recommend you to choose a domain name above 25 characters.
A very long domain name will leave a feeling of unprofessionalism to your customers or visitors and will also be very hard to remember. Because of this you can lose confidence and traffic.
Do not imagine that if you choose a domain name that contains 10 keywords will do better in search engine results. It’s true that in the past search engines were paying more attention to the keywords within the domain name, but nowadays, their algorithms have changed dramatically in the attempt to reduce spam sites and promote only those that offer high quality content.
Just because a domain name is keyword rich does not necessarily mean that it will be displayed on the first page of search engine results.
Also nowadays, Google tends to rank better short domain names in detriment of the longest ones.
Domain name with or without hyphens?
Hyphenated domain names can hurt your the traffic of your site. People usually get confused with the dash and they often forget to add it when accessing the URL directly.
Although they are easier to read, domain names containing hyphens are more difficult to be brought to the top of search engines results using SEO.
Use of hyphens also correlates highly with spammy websites. Hyphens detract from credibility and can act as a spam indicator.
However, if the domain without hyphen is not available and you yet choose to register a hyphenated domain name, make sure that you won’t use more than a hyphen.
Neither for brand names, hyphenated domains are not very good, because visitors will forget about hyphens and your website will lose traffic.
So, if you want a SEO friendly and professional looking domain name, I wouldn’t advise you to go for a domain name that contains hyphens.
Now that you know how to choose a SEO friendly domain name, in the next post I will teach you how to optimize the navigation menu of your website.