Choosing and Registering a Domain Name

 

When you’re absolutely certain you can overcome the challenges of blogging and you’re ready to begin, the first semi technical step to get started is to choose your domain name and to have it registered.

Choosing Your Domain Name

Bloggers have a variety of reasons for the domain names they choose. Most have personal considerations influencing their choice. Those who have been online longer however and those who are more or less acquainted with the ropes of online publishing choose names with one or both of these considerations in mind:

  • keyword match for easier search engine optimization (SEO)
  • strong potential for branding

SEO Considerations

If you’ve found this post without reading my previous posts on market and keyword research, it’s best to go read those posts first to help you understand the importance of incorporating keywords in web pages and blog posts.

There is currently a common belief that if your domain contains keywords that are frequently searched for by members of a market, it stands a chance of ranking better in search engine results pages.

For example, because my domain contains the keyword “blog guide”, it stands a good chance of appearing on search engine results when someone searches for the phrase.

Keep in mind however that the inclusion of keywords in a domain name is only one factor and is by no means the biggest determinant in getting sites to appear on search results. Also, because SEO is an ever changing field, keywords in domain names may or may not remain determining factors in search results in the future.

Domains For Branding

There are also bloggers that snub the use of keywords in domain names and choose their names based on branding considerations. This simply means they want a name that is so unique that people will eventually be able to quickly recall and associate it with their business.

Domain Registrar

Whether you choose a keyword-based domain name or one that carries your brand, you need to get it from a registrar. There are many registrars out there. Two of the most popular ones are Namecheap and GoDaddy.

There are a couple of points you need to consider when choosing a registrar:

  • Accreditation – Pick a registrar that is ICANN accredited. This will ensure that you’re with a registrar that complies with good business standards and policies.
  • Reputation – Needless to say, a good registrar has a good reputation online. Search for reviews or even complaints on a registrar you’re considering to find out its reputation.
  • Terms – You’d want to know if registrars have restrictive contracts or difficult policies for transfers should you decide to leave.
  • Fees – Aside from the cost of the domain, different registrars slap different fees for such extra services as privacy protection.
  • Dedicated Business – Some companies offer both hosting and registration services. There are those who advice however, that it is best to have separate companies handle your registration and hosting. This is simply to ensure that if something happens to your host’s company, your domain has the chance of remaining intact.

Domain Name Extensions

Which extension should you go for? A .com, .net, .info, .biz, .org, etc.? I would personally go for a .com because this is what most people commonly associate with website addresses. When people talk about websites and blogs, what is foremost in their minds is .com. It’s also cheaper than some of the other options.

Then again, there are instances when a geo targeted extension would make better sense. For example if you own a business in Australia, it would make sense to have a .com.au extension.

Ready to buy your blog domain? Start researching for options now.

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One Response to Choosing and Registering a Domain Name
  1. Ella Pearson
    August 29, 2012 | 3:40 am

    Another tip: if you already have a domain name you want to purchase, do so. There are domain flippers, who track searched domain names and instantly purchase those to sell at their own price. Price of domain name will increase and you might lose your chance to purchase especially if you are within budget.

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