Your website URL is key to your brand identity. A recent article by Forbes suggests you should ask yourself some of these questions to make sure you’re using your web address in a smart way.
Can others pronounce it? “Even though users aren’t likely to be saying your domain name out loud, pronounce-ability is still important,” writes Forbes writer Denis Pinsky. “This is because of something called fluency: The ease with which our brains can process information. Names that don’t require a person to think too hard are usually the easiest to remember, and also more likely to inspire positive associations.” You want to make sure that it is easy enough to recall that others won’t misspell it either.
Is it too long? Help make your URL more memorable by making it short–but not so short that you’re having to favor abbreviations to keep it succinct. The Forbes.com article notes, for example, “PastaScience.com” is preferable over “PastaSci.com” for that reason. Think twice about condensing your URL if your brand is not widely known by an acronym or if you’re not widely known by your initials.
Are you complying with trademark rules? You don’t want your domain name to be confused with another site or brand, Pinsky notes. (Read: Domain Too Close to Competitor’s Name) Also, make sure you are complying with trademark rules if using the word REALTOR®.
Are you trying to use a keyword gimmick? It’s unlikely that keywords in your domain name will help you in Google. In fact, it may actually hurt your brand in search results, Pinsky notes in the article. A precise keyword match in a domain won’t do much for you anymore. Some engines may even rank your site as spam or lower quality if you use generic keywords in your domain because it even sounds like you’re trying too hard (e.g. BuyMensSportsShoes.com versus SportsDirect.com).
Source: “8 Smart Tips for Choosing a Winning Domain Name,” Forbes.com (April 10, 2017)