For most entrepreneurs, starting a business raises a number of crucial questions. Where do you host Which platform will you be using? Do you accept payments on your website? Which domain name will you choose?
While all of the major questions need to be answered, we’re going to examine how the right domain name can have wider implications than most business owners realize, especially when it comes to SEO implications.
Your domain name is your online identity, so choose Wisely
Your domain name is essentially your online identity. And in general, a domain name that visitors can easily associate and remember with your business is the best choice for optimal SEO impact.
For example, Jim Fuhs and Chris Stone, the founders of Dealcasters, an Amazon influencer brand, carefully selected their domain name to reflect their business identity. They claim that their SEO for dealcasters.live enabled them to own page one on Google with their domain name showing up as the first .live listing.
Once you have imagined that perfect name but found name.com unavailable, you are not alone. Recent research by domain and hosting analytics provider DomainsBot has shown that searching for an available .com name from two words only yields exact matches 13 percent of the time. Chances are better if you want a longer domain, but you’ll need to expand the name to at least 20 characters to increase your chances of a perfect match to 50 percent. The problem is that a long domain name is harder to read and remember, can be shared on social media, and is more likely to have misspellings when someone tries to use it.
Fortunately, there are hundreds of options that go beyond traditional extensions like .com and .net. You can choose a descriptive top-level domain (TLD) such as .boutique, .cafe, and .associates. With both sides of the point, your domain name does justice to your core competency and defines what you do, such as emily.salon or holiday.rentals.
SEO starts with your domain name
We all know that discoverability is huge as it affects search rankings, which improves your online traffic and increases business success. Most people searching for one type of business online have very little information before clicking their way through to an online search by name, and so the domain name plays the most important role in search results. Domain names that contain meaningful keywords, in particular, can achieve good search results. Business owners looking to make an informed decision should take this into account when choosing a domain name.
For example, Amna Suleiman, digital marketing specialist at OneStream, wanted two clear, meaningful and effective words to describe the company’s domain. Research has shown that “onestream” and “live” are high-volume search terms for live streaming. So the company chose onestream.live, which delivered the SEO results they wanted.
While the keywords you want to rank for in your domain won’t automatically get your website on page one of search results, it can be part of a strategy that does so. If your domain name makes your website clear, then you can convince Google’s algorithms that the website is a relevant resource on the subject.
Contrary to common misconceptions, Google has no preference for certain TLDs. Google states that its systems treat descriptive domains in the same way as traditional TLDs like .com and .org
With memorable industry-specific domain names like .loans, .travel, .tours, .live, and more, businesses can create descriptive domain names that contain the primary keyword that their websites should rank their websites on in search engines to anchor a successful SEO strategy.
Move with the times
We see more and more companies switching to industry-specific, short and memorable descriptive domain extensions that can have a positive impact on SEO. TrueName, a global leader in descriptive domains, recently announced that more than 1,000 of its customers are on the first page of search results for their main keyword.
Choosing your domain name should be part of your marketing plan and complement any marketing effort. It’s a saturated market and branding is crucial. It is best to choose a suitable domain name.
Once you’ve found the most descriptive domain name for your business and implemented a full SEO strategy, you are well on your way to building strong authority over your website. And every SEO gain you earn will make the domain you choose stronger in the eyes of search engines. You may also want to consider using similar domain names across all of your online channels to increase brand visibility across all platforms.
Blake Janover, founder and CEO of Janover Ventures, has implemented this strategy with great success. He built an online network of some of the most valuable commercial real estate, multi-family and small business finance websites in the industry with memorable descriptive domain names such as multifamily.loans, hud.loans, apartment.loans and commercialrealestate.loans. Starting with descriptive domain names and using a logical organization to support with content that focuses on related keywords and strong technical SEO practices, it resulted in 1 million unique visitors to its websites, which consisted mostly of organic traffic from its target audience and business growth of 184 percent in 2020.
In today’s digital world, you should consider your domain name carefully. It will help establish your startup’s brand name, become your global identity, and transform your company into a well-known brand.
A strategy of the primary keywords in the domain, backed by valuable content and technical SEO, will go a long way in getting you to the first page of search results.