Domain names are distinctive web addresses. Just like actual physical addresses, a domain name is the way a customer can find you online. Customers search for you on their Search Engine of choice like Google or Bing. A good SEO friendly domain name helps you to stand out and turn up in the results page for the relevant search term. So, choosing an SEO friendly domain name is a serious business as it can help determine the amount of traffic to your website. With that in mind, here is a list of seven best practices that will help you make sure that you choose an SEO friendly domain name:
1. Make it Catchy
Brevity, lucidity, readability, and most importantly, memorability are the four yardsticks to test whether a domain name is catchy. The names that are short, easy to remember, easy to type, and easy to pronounce are often preferred over rather difficult ones. This is particularly important in word-of-mouth marketing. It is advisable to stay away from those names which have more than 15 characters or are deliberately misspelled or spelled incorrectly. Always remember that the easier a domain is to read, the better it is for search engines as well. Names like Ai.club, Poker.club or Emerald.club are extremely catchy and make it easy to understand what its about.
2. What to avoid
- Long Meaningless Numbers – Mostly domains with numbers are associated with spammy websites. They use the numbers to make their website stand out or be remembered easily, especially in countries like China, where numbers carry more meanings. While in the remaining parts of the world, too many numbers without any sequence are considered or perceived as spam websites. Keep your numbers short like club or 0.club or 8.club, which are short and easy to remember.
- Ambiguity (Multiple meanings) – Words with multiple meanings could confuse both the search engine and people as well. For example, the word ‘bar’ could mean a place that serves alcohol or could also mean a counsel of attorneys or even a piece of candy or gym equipment.
- Choosing a name that is difficult to read and remember – A longer and complicated domain name is prone to be misread. Ensure that your name is short, easy to read, easy to type, and spelled correctly. For example, Coupon.club and Jazz.club are good examples of short and easy names to type and remember.
- Excessive use of hyphens – Hyphens in a domain name may reduce the credibility of the website. It is also hard to properly say the name aloud if you have to include the hyphens, but if you don’t include them, you risk the web address being mistaken for the same name without hyphens.
3. Forget Domain Age
It is not necessary to worry about how long a domain has been registered (its domain age). What matters is the relevant quality content that is on your website with the domain. Your original relevant content assures top performance points. Domain age does not matter so much according to the new search engine algorithms. Constant updating of relevant original content, on the other hand, is much more important for SEO.
4. Be wise in using Subdomains
The risk in adding subpages lies in the point that there’s no guarantee of transferring the ranking ability of your root domain to your subdomains. It is more functional to add link-worthy content in subfolders rather than subdomains. A subdomain is a divisional part of the primary website name that is used to arrange the primary website into separate website categories, for example, marketing.primarywebsite.com. On the other hand, a Subfolder is the primary website’s subsets of contents in separate folders in a website server. For example www.primarywebsite.com/SubFolder/. Moreover, a strong ranking performance is generally acquired when you keep content together on a single domain.
5. Redirects/ Moving Domains
- Limit redirects (The shortest redirect string is recommended):
Never try linking to a page that has a redirect on it. It will only lead to multiple redirects that will frustrate your web site visitors. For example, do not direct site 1 to site 2, which also redirects to site 3.
- Mobile visitors to your website or domain should be taken into consideration:
The time spent on following a redirect is most noticeable on mobile devices, especially when they use a slower network. (Browsing speed, accessibility, UX, etc. will be affected)
- Domain Authority is Important:
When a domain redirects to another, there is a greater possibility the destination domain’s authority will be considered suspicious.
6. Choosing a TLD Extension
In the case of your domain extension, it is good to embrace generally trusted and accessible TLDs like .com, .club, .online, .shop, blog, etc. for a reliable and trustworthy user experience. Avoid using TLDs that are often associated with spam and are connected to low-ranking sites. It is also important to keep in mind that your TLD of choice won’t negatively influence your SEO ranking directly. Yet your TLD is of great importance considering its potential implications for UX and SEO. DomainSearch.club and Names.club are great sites to find good domain names with extensions that may be perfect for your business or organization. Using an extension that adds meaning and relevance to your domain name can also be beneficial for organic SEO.
7. Brandable TLD’s
Google uses ‘brand signals’ to pick out high quality and low-quality websites based on the source, so you don’t have to think twice before using your brand name in your domain name. The brand stands for your uniqueness in cyberspace, which makes your domain name even more memorable. And combining your brand with a meaningful keyword and domain extension makes it even better. For example, a book club using the domain name book.club, adds instant brandable and SEO value.
We hope these seven best practices help you choose the best possible domain name for you or your business.