Let’s start with a statistic. As of the end of 2018, there are approximately 339.8 million registered domains worldwide. That’s quite a lot, to say the least. Although a little overwhelming, it’s an accurate representation of how competitive the online space is.
As a start-up, your name has so much to do with your brand, your marketing, and in turn, your customer acquisition. It’s your identity.
Your start-up’s domain name is just as important because it is an extension of your online brand and it is how your customers remember you and find you online. Once you’ve chosen one, it is quite difficult to change, as you become known for this domain name.
So how do you stand out? What exactly makes for a great start-up domain name? Well firstly, it’s got to be relatively short, easy to type, and easy to remember, but it’s also got to be unique, relevant, meaningful, and memorable. It also needs to sum up who you are. As in, encapsulate your services or product.
Don’t let it intimidate you, it’s actually an exciting process – a step towards establishing your authenticity. Now, let’s break that down even more.
It must relate to your brand
Your domain name needs to reflect the name of your start-up. This doesn’t necessarily mean that it needs to be the full name of your start-up, especially if you have a long name.
Don’t overthink it, there should simply be a connection between the two. Because you may not have the massive brand recognition that companies like Apple.com or Amazon.com have, you should avoid any extreme changes from your start-up name to your domain name so that your customers or future audience can easily identify you.
This means avoiding acronyms that don’t make any sense. For instance, if you’re a freelance photographer going by the name of Selena Drummond Photography, registering a domain name like sdp.net, sdphotogrpahy.com. isn’t going to be your best option.
In this case, the value is in your name. Something like dummondphotos.net or selenadrummondimages.com would work better. That’s if you can even find any unregistered versions of your name on major domains such as .com or .net of course, but a little more on that later.
Make it unique and memorable
Your domain name doesn’t have to be super short as this can make the process more complicated, often leading to unrecognizable names and therefore confusing the heck out of your audience.
Your domain name needs to be unique and memorable. Even more so, it shouldn’t look like any other business’s name. Once you have found a name that you love, you should check to see that it doesn’t infringe on any trademarks.
Once you have done that, you then need to do an extensive search on Google to see that there aren’t any similar names out there. Again, this ties into ensuring your audience don’t get confused.
You ever heard of bounce rate? Well, search engines determine the value of the content on your website by how long people stay on your site. If you have a similar name to an already established business and users keep finding your site and leaving within seconds because it’s not what they were looking for, this will lower your ranking greatly and that’s the last thing you want.
By having a unique domain name, customers will be able to find you easily which is crucial seen as though the modern-day consumer is relatively impatient. You don’t want a potential customer losing interest because it’s difficult to find you – they’ll simply move on to something else. That’s the reality of the digital age.
Choose a suitable domain extension
Ok, so now that you’ve got a kickass domain name idea, picking your domain extension is the last and arguably most important step.
Let’s go back to that statistic. Out of those 339.8 million registered domain names, how many of them do you reckon are .com’s, .net’s or .org’s? Well, the same report states that the .com and .net domains had a combined total of approximately 149.7 million domain name registrations at the end of the second quarter of 2018.
Now, what do you think the chances are that your awesome domain name isn’t taken across those? (insert rolling tumbleweed gif here).
Choosing the right domain name extension is super important for building an authentic online identity. For your start-up, you should look beyond these traditional domain names.
Our domain name is for creators and innovators that want to escape the corporate image associated with traditional TLD’s like .com. In fact, by choosing .icu as your domain extension, you’re joining a global community of individuals who have taken the path less traveled – a global community of trailblazers seeking an authentic identity in a crowded world.
Still not convinced? We’re also number 8 on the top 30 best new domains list. Plus, the chances of you being able to register your ideal domain name is much higher. Our users are building great things using .icu domains. Take a look at how .icu is changing the world.