You’ve finally decided that you will start a blog.

Now you need to make sure it has an address that works for you.

If you’ve decided to go with your name, it’s pretty simple.

Head on over to Godaddy and see if you can find yourname.com.

If you have an unusual name, the .com might still be available.

If not .com, then .co, .net and .me are all good choices.

Stay away from .info.  This domain extension has been traditionally associated with spammy, low quality sites.

Name Considerations

Is your name is difficult to spell? Then consider options that combine your name with a word or phrase.

For example, if you’re a writer, consider marywrites.com or marythewriter.com.

Blogging about cats? marylovescats.com.

You get the idea. By combining your first name and a common phrase, you could create a great, memorable name.

For my clients, I recommend they do both: get their name, and get their name+phrase domains.

It is fairly straightforward to set them up so they both point to the same website.

Brand Name

So you’ve decided to go with a brand name.

Back in the days of the blogging Wild West, it was enough to have a keyword on your domain name.  You could appear on the first page of google search results for that keyword.

That is no longer the case. Still, it makes sense to choose a keyword phrase for your domain name that relates to your topic.

True, nowhere in Yahoo, Google or Uber is there a hint about what these companies do.

They also have access to huge marketing budgets that you and I don’t.

Given that, choose a phrase that is memorable and is related to your topic.

Brainstorm a few options, then head over to Godaddy to see if the .com is available.

What To Avoid

We know that choosing the right domain is important for memorability and relevance to our subject area.  It should also be  cool with the brand image we want portray.

Stay away from the following:

  • Hyphens: don’t do it. Choose a different name rather than have hyphens. It doesn’t roll off the tongue, people never know if it’s a hyphen or an underscore.
  • Numbers: you will forever be saying ‘five spelled out’ or ‘five as in the number 5’.
  • Anything longer than 18 characters: shorter is always better.  It is easier to remember and more difficult to mess up. Think also about how it might fit on a logo or your business card. Keep it short.
  • Registered trademarks: your website might be about Nike products.  But you  can’t use the name Nike as part of your domain, not without risking getting sued.

Go Shop!

Now you know what to look for. Off you go to Godaddy and buy yourself a fabulous domain name.

Two final tips:

  • Google ‘godaddy coupon’.  You will probably find a promotion code that will let you buy a domain for as little as $0.99.
  • Be prepared to buy. I’ve seen searches turn up available domains, only to find them gone the following day. There might be people monitoring searches, so they can grab the domain and resell it domain at a premium.

Happy domain shopping!

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