How to choose the right domain name for your business
When it comes to choosing the right domain name for your business you have a few different options to choose from.
You can go with your business’s name in URL form. So if your company’s name was Silvertone your domain name would be Silvertone.com. We call this a branded domain name. You see these quite often. Think Walmart.com, Target.com, BestBuy.com, etc. You know exactly whose website you are visiting when you go to them.
The second form you will find are business’s that use a keyword in their domain name. So let’s say that your company Silvertone was a financial investment company and their primary keyword was “financial investments”. You might go with a domain name like SilvertoneFinancial.com or SilvertoneInvestments.com. This includes your company name and a keyword. Domain names like this might not include your company name, but would contain one of your primary keywords.
The final form is what is referred to as EMDs. EMDs stands for “exact match domains.” These domain names only contain your primary keyword. So for the example above Silvertone’s domain name would just be FinancialInvestments.com.
So what form is right for you? Well, let’s look at their individual SEO and marketing impact.
Branded domain names
Branded domain names are the most suited for conveying your company’s brand. Walmart might be known for cheap prices, but if you told someone to go to CheapPrices.com they would not automatically think, “I’m going to Walmart’s website” without first visiting it.
So for marketing and branding purposes it is usually best to go with a branded domain name. This usually also works best for brick and mortar stores or local restaurants. That way, if you want to look up a menu from MinYun’s Chinese Cuisine you can easily search for and find it.
Also, in my opinion, I believe branded domain names carry more of a weight to them. But again, that’s just my thoughts.
Your domain name is one of the most important ranking factors that your website has. So if you were trying to rank for Jacksonville Orthodontist. Then having the domain name, JacksonvilleOrthodontist.com would bring a lot of relevancy to your website with the search engines.
The fact that you have your keyword in your URL tells the search engines, “This website is about Jacksonville Orthodontists.” It brings a level of trust and increased relevancy because you can’t really do much else with that website other than being an Orthodontist in Jacksonville.
One of the downsides of having an EMD is that it is much easier to over-optimize your website and receive a search engine penalty and actually lose keyword rankings. However; if you know what you’re doing than an EMD will bring your website a competitive SEO advantage over another company that uses a branded domain name.
Partial EMD / Keyword in URL
A third option exists that can bring both of the above together. By using your company name in conjunction with your full keyword or part of your keyword you can get benefits from both of the above. However; it will usually not give you all of the benefits and will likely not be as effective.
Where it will excel is with shorter company names that would benefit from an additional word in the domain name. By placing both your company name and a keyword, you will be recognized as your company and still receive the SEO benefits of having your keyword in your domain name.
In the end, though it all depends on what you are trying to do. What kind of business you are building. Where that business will be primarily established. And what marketing methods will be deployed.
These are just a few thoughts to help your understanding in domain name selection.