(This is a contributed post)
There should be no debate about the importance of a website for your business. Everyone knows why you need one, and you should all be aware of the benefits it brings. But, there’s one aspect of a website that sometimes gets overlooked; the domain name.
What is a domain name?
We’ll save all the technical mumbo jumbo and go for the simplest definition possible here. Basically, a domain name is the name of your website. It’s what everyone sees in the URL bar at the top of your site, it’s what shows up in Google searches, and no other website will have the same one as yours. Now, believe it or not, but this simple thing has massive consequences for your business. In fact, it’s crucial that you choose the right domain name for your company. Why? Well, here are a few things you should know about the importance of domain names:
Websites with a professional domain name will have a better brand image than those that don’t. A professional name is basically one that relates to your company and makes sense. For example, www.yourbusinessname.com is way more professional than www.randomjumbleofwords.com. Realistically, you want your company name to be your domain name. If this isn’t possible, then make it as relevant to your business as possible. When you stray off track, that’s when your image suffers. Consumers notice domain names more than you think, so try your best to make it your company name and improve your brand image.
Of course, when people are searching for your business online, you need to ensure your domain name matches up as closely as possible. Yes, you can still achieve a good SEO ranking with a domain name that’s not an exact match for your business, but it will help if it is. So, when people search for your company name online, you will appear as one of the top search results. Also, when your domain name doesn’t match your company – or isn’t close to it – then it can confuse people who are searching. Either way, if you want to give your SEO a boost, then choose your domain name wisely.
A simple reason to pick the right domain name is that it’s hard to change it. You can do it, and it isn’t technically that difficult, but what happens after is problematic. A new domain name means that you have to carry out SEO migration to ensure that your site continues to rank for all the right keywords and maintains the same exposure. However, this often doesn’t happen as Google struggles to process domain name changes, and your ranking will slip. Not only that, but people get used to searching for your website, then suddenly have to change. It causes a lot of stress that you simply don’t need. But, if you had the perfect domain name to start with, then none of these things become issues.
A lot of small business owners don’t really understand the concept of domain names. So, your nearest competitors might not have proper domain names. This is excellent for you as it means you can improve the way you look compared to them. When you have a suitable domain name, it makes your business look modern and updated. It’s clear you know a thing or two about websites and digital marketing, so you look like a forward-thinking company. If we relate this back to the first point, you can say that it helps improve your brand image even more. People are more likely to give you a shot because you seem up-to-date on new things and aren’t living in the past.
The bottom line is that domain names help people identify with your business. Sure, you can chop and change them whenever you like, but this creates issues with SEO and your brand image. You wouldn’t change your business name over and over again, so don’t do this with your domain name! Therefore, you need to make the correct decision when you set up your website for the first time. Think long and hard about the perfect domain name for your business website. Get advice from other people, run a few names by them and see what they think, etc. Then, you will have a name that reflects your business, builds brand identity, and lets you work on improving your search engine performance.