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4 Key Questions to Ask When Choosing a Domain Name for your SMB

It’s no secret that small businesses have it rough in the online market. Having to compete against powerful brands and large companies that are not just more developed but also better funded is a very difficult task, indeed. 

However, despite fierce competition, a lot of SMB manage to survive and succeed in such an environment. If you’re wondering how SMBs manage that, the answer lies in good online visibility and recognition

The vital part of that visibility and recognition is a proper domain name. Yes, everything begins with something as what seems to be a simple step as choosing a domain name. Unfortunately, there’s nothing simple about it because choosing a domain name requires more attention than picking the first name that comes to mind. 

Let’s just say there are more important factors involved in the process. Therefore, the domain you choose will stick with you, at least for the time being. You can always change it, but then you’d have to build your online presence all over again. With that in mind, here are a few key questions to ask when choosing a domain name for your SMB.

Will a domain name affect my website traffic?

Yes, it will. A domain name that’s easy to understand and comprehend by both search engines and consumers themselves is generally more appealing. 

For example, you can opt for a keyword domain where the keyword is something relevant to your business. This will help generate more traffic to your website as consumers don’t have to ponder too long about what it is that your business does. It’s spelled out for them in your domain name. 

Moreover, search engines will rank your website for related search queries, which is also a good way to generate more organic traffic to your website. And, as you may already know, the more organic traffic your business gets, the greater the likelihood of scoring more conversions. 

Do extensions matter?

Yes, they do, and quite a lot actually. Believe it or not, a (dot) something extension, such as .com or .org, for instance, is more relevant than the actual domain name. 

This is why the dot extensions are referred to as TLDs or Top-Level Domains, while your actual domain name is referred to as an SLD or Second-Level Domain. That said, choosing the right extension or TLD is equally, if not more, important than choosing an SLD. 

TLDs come in various forms. For example, the .com one is the most popular, but you can choose something more specific like .edu or .info. In addition, you can choose a location-specific TLD like .us, .uk, .au (United States, United Kingdom, and Australia, respectively). 

If you’re wondering about how to personalize your service efficiently and make your entire website more engaging, you can opt for a .me TLD. That way, you not only opt for a popular TLD, but your domain becomes something of a CTA (Call To Action) for your customers.

Will a domain name affect my branding efforts?

A well-chosen domain name and branding efforts for your SMB work perfectly well with each other. Moreover, choosing a branded domain name can elevate your branding efforts and make it more seamless. 

Having the name of your brand as a domain name will boost your visibility, awareness and exposure in the online world. 

Furthermore, deciding to go with a branded domain means that the domain is most likely free since it’s unique to your business. By now, you might imagine that the majority of domain names are already taken if not reserved for someone’s future endeavors.

Should I keep it simple?

Yes, simplicity when choosing a domain name is the way to go. If you overcomplicate things, you will confuse your audience and make your website look like spam. A perfect example of this is the use of hyphenated domain names

It may seem like a good idea to use a hyphen in your domain name, especially if the domain name without a hyphen is already taken. 

However, hyphens ruin the readability and memorability of your domain, and using them is associated with spam behavior. Therefore, keep things short, just fewer than 15 characters will do, and keep things simple to make your domain name truly shine.

 

Choosing a domain name for your SMB is vital. To exist in the online world, you’ll need a proper address that everyone can recognize and remember. This is what domain names are for; to give your SMB its rightful place in the vast and highly competitive market.

Elaine Bennett is a digital marketing specialist focused on helping startups and small businesses grow. Besides that, she's a regular contributor for Bizzmark Blog and writes hands-on articles about business and marketing, as it allows her to reach even more entrepreneurs and help them on their business journey.

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