Domain is a virtual address in the internet world for your business. Your business will function from this address in the virtual world just the way it does in the real world from your street address.
Estimates suggest that electronic commerce along with mobile commerce is slated to cross 10 trillion dollars in the near future. Therefore, in order to ‘flourish’ your business and make it ‘stand out’ from its competitors and rivals certain pointers are essential to bear in mind. The beauty of the internet is that you can coin your domain-name unlike in the real world, where most of the times, your business has a pre-allocated address.
The following content is aimed at helping you choose and register a domain name which enhances and boosts your prospects along with creating a lasting impact on your current and prospective audience.
Precautions to be kept in mind while choosing domain names:
1. Choosing the right Keywords: To begin with having a mind – map and a road – map helps immensely. By these we mean, listing the 10 most important keywords or search words used in your business helps identify the best description for the business. It is via these keywords that your website will be searched by prospective clients and customers on the internet. Hence spending quality time in identifying these words makes a good beginning in ensuring a unique domain. Upon finalizing this list, one can try out several permutations and combinations using prefixes and suffixes. For instance, a website on patent having patent as part of its domain name renders it powerful and unique at the same time. Eg.: paritypatent.com, penapatent.com etc.
2. Infringements: One should be doubly sure that similarity in the domain name does not infringe someone else’s site. Just because the desired site is not available due to it being taken by someone else, one should not book a sub-domain or an extension of the domain. For Eg: www.trademarkcopia.com is a global dot com domain. Somebody booking www.trademarkcopia.fr could lead to violation and infringement of the original dot com site. Apart from violations, such close similarity to another domain, website could take away your valuable traffic and defeat the whole purpose of booking a domain in the first place.
3. Aim for a unique domain: At the outset, research and look up popular websites carrying similar names, prefixes and / or suffixes similar to the ones you have chosen. Nothing is more disastrous and unsuccessful than having a similar domain name as a popular trending website. Drop the similarity and try different combinations, permutations and combinations until you arrive at something truly unique and different. As the traffic grows and hits turn to sales, the effort is well worth it !
4. World-wide or Country-specific outreach: Strategise who your target audience is going to be. If you are planning to reach out to a global audience then dot com domains are the way to go. On the other hand, if you think you want to target audience in specific countries then country specific domains like dot fr, dot uk, should be your preferences.
5. Ease of the domain name: Any name that is tough to type, remember and understand is a sure no-no. Ensure that the domain name is easy to recall and reproduce, easy to look at and hear when pronounced. This adds to the appeal of the brand. Anything difficult is a sure put off and a hindrance to the outreach of the website.
Also, a lengthy name is yet another pitfall. Short names are trendy as they are easy on the mind. Hence, aim for a short name.
6. Suggestive and Intuitive names: Names chosen should be such that they are suggestive of the business undertaken and the audience is intuitively able to guess about the business fairly easily. For eg: trademakcopia.com is suggestive of trademarks, paritypatents.com is suggestive of patents. This way the audience’s mind is automatically captivated concerning the crux of the domain name.
7. Numbers and Symbols: Hyphens, apostrophes, inverted commas, Arabic as well as Roman numerals make a domain name cumbersome and cluttered and bring down its popularity. Therefore, it is best to avoid these obstacles and stick to alphabets which add to the ease of the overall look and feel of the website.
8. Traps: One should not be trapped by getting into free offers from hosting companies regarding hosting plans, booking of domains and websites etc. Genuineness and veracity of such offers must always be checked prior to booking them. Along with such offers, one should consider the technical strengths of the hosting companies such as minimum server maintenance and minimal outages along with good support systems.
9. “Please select webhosting company who gives guarantee of website availability of 99.9% and with backup support. If your website is not available you lost prospective client and also search engine can reduce rank of your website.
10. Cyber Squatting: cyber squatters and cyber pirates are to be especially watched out for. In the real world, ‘squatting’ is an act by which a trespasser ends up illegally occupying a deserted or unoccupied piece of land or building that the trespasser / squatter did not own and / or does not have valid and express permission to use.
In the virtual world, this type of illegal acquisition and retention of domain names incorporating popular trademarks is known as ‘cyber squatting’ or ‘domain squatting’. Incorporating mis-spelled versions of popular trademarks is known as ‘typo squatting’.
Such online infringement is done to sebvert traffic from one's rivals and competitors to derive ilegal gain and benifits. Cyber squatters and cyber pirates may also harass and demand the original and legal domain / trademarks owners to 'buy' these illegal incorporated domain names for a high fee leading to a lot of consternation.