According to Business Insider, there were over 644 million active websites in existence as of March 2012. Amidst this sea of sites, getting noticed in the online world is half the battle, so deciding on the right name for a site is crucial. This means buying a domain name will require doing a little research on how best to describe a business in a clear, succinct way, so potential customers are sure to click on your link and visit the site.
Choosing a Domain Name
Buying the right domain name can go a long way towards attracting potential buyers to a site. Choosing the right name has as much to do with the specific words used as it does the type of business it represents. Much like the search terms online surfers use to find what they’re looking for, an effective domain name will contain one or more of these same search terms.
For example, someone looking for hiking gear may enter the words “hiking” or “hiking gear” when using a search engine, such as Google or Bing. In effect, a domain name that uses these terms has a good chance of showing up within the first three pages of search results. This virtually guarantees a business will get noticed in an online search.
Not only does the site get noticed among hundreds or thousands of other sites, but it also gets free advertising. So if 300,000 people search for “hiking gear” in any given week, that’s 300,000 free views simply because your site is one of the first ones that come up in the results. The key rests in finding the most popular terms for a given search and using them in the website’s domain name.
According to?Ebusiness2Day, website domain name registrations increased by seven percent or 13.3 million new sites in 2010 and exponentially increased each year. And while website extensions come in a range of different formats and letters, .com domains remain the most popular. These domains were first introduced by the U. S. Department of Defense in 1985. Today, .com domains are managed by VeriSign, a prominent domain registry company.
Businesses looking to sell a product or service online will definitely want to use a .com extension in the domain name. The extension .com is intended to denote a commercial site, though it’s used for all types of sites just the same. The .com extension also gives the impression of a solid business venture instead of an affiliate page or sales page.
Not only is the .com extension popular, but the majority of people searching from a browser address bar will assume a specific site ends in .com and enter it at the end of a domain name. This means a web address, such as gonefishing.com will get some of the traffic intended for gonefishing.net when people search directly from the browser address bar. The same goes for any other variations on the domain name, such as gonefishing.info or gonefishing.biz.
Other Top-Level Domain Name Options
It’s always a good idea to use a name that comes as close as possible to the actual purpose when you buy domain name websites. And while .com extensions are the most popular, there are other top-level domain name options worth considering. The .org extension was created for community service, charity, or any other type of non-profit venture. The Public Interest Registry organization handles registry management for .org extensions.
Other variations on extensions include .biz, .net and .info. The .biz extension was initially offered as a way for trademark business owners to establish their sites. Over time, .com became the favored extension in terms of respectability and authenticity, though many sites today still use .biz. Businesses operating a network of sites may want to consider using the .net extension in their domain name. As of 1993, VeriSign took over managing the .net extensions, originally owned by Network Solutions. The .info extension works well for businesses wanting to provide an information resource for visitors. Currently managed by the Afilias registry company, the .info domain was the first addition made to the Domain Name System after .com.
For websites founded in countries outside the United States, each country provides a second-level extension, such as .au for Australia and .uk for the United Kingdom. Second-level extensions appear at the tail-end of a domain name, so gonefishing.com or gonefishing.info would appear as gonefishing.com.au and gonefishing.info.uk.