Best Domain Names
A domain name is not only a locator for an online entity, but also a marketing tool, a brand device, an email address, and a mnemonic for customers to find eCommerce organizations. Because of these multiple important factors, and because changing domain names can be costly in business continuity, choosing a domain name is an important part of setting up an eCommerce operation. This article reviews the important elements of choosing a domain name.
Choosing a Domain Name
If you have an existing storefront in the real world, you will likely want to maintain and extend the name and branding that you have already established. In this situation, your greatest concern may be to get a domain name that clearly reflects that brand.
If, on the other hand, you are starting business for the first time as an etailer with no prior existence, you man wish to create your brand with your cheap domain name. For example, Amazon.com did this, and the company is referred to interchangeably as "Amazon" or "Amazon.com."
The name that you will use in either of these cases to establish your online identity is actually the second level domain. The top-level domain, or TLD, is also an important choice, and it is the part that follows the second level domain after a period or dot, for example, .com, .net, .org, .gov, etc.
The TLD can be an important element, too, because it sends an important signal about your business. A widely used TLD that people are familiar with and fits your business could add extra punch to your domain name.
Among things to watch out for are choosing a name that is too similar to another existing name—people looking for you might end up at someone else's site; a name that is a misspelling of a popular site; or a name that can be read in a different way than you intended. If there's some subtle double entendre, you want to at least know about it (if not choose a different domain name) before you order the business cards and stationery, so ask some trusted associates what they think of your choice.
When you're choosing, remember that short and memorable are both good. If your business name is Northwest Chapter of the Original American Soap Company, Inc., you will likely do better as an online merchant if you find a catchy way to shorten that.
Domain Name Deals
There are several types of domain name deals to look for online. The two most popular are 1) signing up for web hosting and getting a free domain name and 2) signing up for a domain name and getting free web hosting. In an eCommerce situation, the first option is probably better, because the free web hosting that comes with registering a domain name is not as likely to have all the features that you need for your ecommerce site. Other deals may involved reduced rates for paying for several months, a year, or several years in advance.
Since it is possible to register your domain and purchase web hosting from the same entity, you may actually want to research the other elements of your site as you are deciding on your domain name and where to purchase it: that way, you can find one provider whom you trust and do all your business in one place. You may also want to assure yourself that you are setting up with a web hosting service that is not going to disappear overnight, and who offers web packages that can help you take your business to the next level, should your online presence take off.
Finding a Cheap Domain Name?
Cheap is not the key issue with a domain name: the most important things are for an eCommerce site is a quality name and an ecommerce package and site design that work for your business. Likely, if you focus on looking for these things, the domain name will be thrown in for free. But don't look for a cheap name at the expense of these other, more important features.Related article: Domain Names