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Picking a Domain for an Online Store

Picking a Domain for an Online Store
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To create a successful online store amidst the stiff competition on the internet, takes a lot of time, planning and creativity. E-commerce in whatever niche you plan to venture into is very competitive. You may have done research about the online business you want to start and what is remaining is picking the right domain name. This is what will determine success or failure for your online store.

The most suitable domain name will give your store online visibility that is necessary for building your online presence. There is stiff competition online and the main thing that will make your business get noticed is the domain name you choose. Knowing how important this is, the following information is all that you need.

How You Will Benefit From Creating a New Domain Name

The cheapest domain name is a new one. It is inexpensive since you can create it on a budget. There are many cheap online domain registrars you can utilize. You will benefit greatly from creating a new domain name for your e-commerce website and registering it with one of the accredited registrars. You will also need to protect the domain name to prevent unauthorized users from taking advantage of you. Always pay for renewal of your domain name on time to avoid losing it.

The other benefit is that you will have full control of creating the name you want. The best domain name should indicate the products you are selling on the online store to help the search engines place your business rightly. Include one or two keywords of what you will provide i.e. "petfood.com" in the domain name. This will make it easy for search engines to rank your website and customers will find your online store when they search for pet food. But, this is not as easy as it sounds. There is stiff competition for domain names and most of them especially Dot-com ones have already been taken. Be creative and take your time.

Buying an older Domain Name is Advantageous

When the domain name you want has been taken, you have other options. You can purchase an existing or an already registered domain name if it is available although you have to part with some cash which may range from thousands to hundred thousand’s. This may be worth it for some e-commerce websites which have great potential because the investment will pay back depending on ROI. Check "Whois" for domain names which are available for sale. Contact the owner but be prepared to pay more than usual.

Fortunately, there are online auction sites like SnapNames.com, Moniker, GoDaddy, DomainTools, GreatDomains, Bido, Afternic and similar sites that offer cheaper prices. The minimum bid prices on these sites of the already registered domain names which owners want to sell are much cheaper. You can make an offer, buy or bid for the available names. You can also sign-up for email notifications of upcoming sales or future listings. You may need a brokerage expert to help you acquire and transfer the domain name.

Before you register any domain name, ensure that you have not infringed someone else's copyright by searching copyright.gov. Make sure you search this site thoroughly before you buy an existing or older domain name.

It is better to acquire an existing or expired domain name, that is relevant to your business and start trading right away than to register a new domain name which will plunge the business into the unknown. In addition to this, create great content and quality backlinks and Google will rank your site highly.

Top Tips for Selecting a Great Domain Name

You can attract a regular flow of traffic whom you can convert to shoppers if you know how to select the right domain name for your e-commerce site. The following are top tips that will help you choose the best domain name for your online store.

1. Use the Relevant Keywords. Every type of business in any niche has key words which are relevant to that field. Conduct keyword research to find the best keywords that are relevant to your e-commerce store. Use these words to optimize your site for search engine optimization. Use one or more of these words in the domain name you select or create a new one that will catch the online traffic attention, like "winningdomainnames.com". Some people use several keywords to make it easy for prospective customers to track them in the midst of millions of websites that have been hosted already. Be creative and think outside the box or buy an existing domain name if you have the resources.

2. Make it Unique. Choose a unique domain name which stands out in the crowd. This name will help your online store to get noticed. Never ever use domain names that are similar to domain names of popular online stores thinking you will win their customers. When these prospects land onto your website and they find that you have misled them to the wrong site, they may leave negative comments on your website, pass word around using social media sites or tell it all to those who care to listen through word-of-mouth. These will include friends, family, colleagues, their online community and their followers if they have online sites and social media profiles. Create positive impressions on your targeted audience by choosing a unique domain name that will lead to a unique website that has a potential of earning you long-term profits.

3. Make it Short and Simple. Short words are easy to remember. If you make them simple, your prospective customers will find it easy to spell and type them when browsing the internet. When people search they key-in words that are easy for them to spell and type. Long URLs which are complex put them off if they have to crack their heads to remember them. An exception to this is when a website is crucial to them and they have visited it many times. But, if you site is new and you are striving to build your web presence, always strike a balance between your business/brand name and a domain name which is as short and simple as you can make it without compromising quality. If you have to cut-off the business/brand name on your URL then it is better to have Skylinedesigners.co than Skylinedesi.co.

4. Make it Easy to Pronounce and Remember. People are so busy with their lives that, you don’t expect them to remember every other website. They surf the internet to get a plumber, airline tickets, vacation destinations etc. the domain name you choose for you online store should be easy to pronounce and get it out of their mouth rightly when talking or when speaking to their friends and family on phone. Make the name easy for them to remember. Read it out to someone and find out if she will remember it after sometime. Ask her to pronounce it to hear how it sounds. You don’t want to lose customers when they fail to remember your e-commerce web address.

5. Dot-com Domains are the Best. The most popular domains are the Dot-com domain names. They attract the largest number of searches on search engines to the extent that most people type .com at the end of the websites they are searching almost involuntarily. That is why most people prefer to buy Dot-com domain names or create new ones and then brand them than use alternative .net, .org, .biz unless they are non-profits. In some countries like UK it is advisable to register a .com domain as well as .co.uk the fast growing favorite TLDs in the market. In other countries it is either an existing .com or any other .com.

6. Incorporate Your Company/Brand Name. A domain name which includes a brand name or its company name cuts the edge in competition. Branding and marketing play an important role in getting a business known which generates online traffic. If you use your offline company name or brand as your domain name, customers will find it familiar. Register the brand or company name as your e-commerce domain name. Later on, you can register more domain names and create relevant links in related websites to your online store.

7. Avoid Numbers and Hyphens. It is not easy to remember a domain name hyphens or numbers. Many people are used to typing without hyphens. It may be confusing when you are typing the domain URL with hyphens on the e-mail or on the browser. It is also not easy to communicate such names verbally. When customers forget to type hyphens, they may end up in competitor’s website and you lose the sale. The only exception is when hyphens are used on a strong domain name which would not have been available without hyphens. Numbers are also hard to remember and a website with a "4" in it may be typed with a "four" unless someone owns both related websites.
Next Step in Achieving Online Success

After settling down on the right domain name you need to shop around or essential e-commerce tools that will pave way for success. These include shopping cart tools, SSL certificates (or other security certificates), a site-builder, a merchant account and a gateway account (optional) to process payments. You can purchase these tools and services from one provider which makes management easier or you can shop for them from different providers. Choose wisely to ensure that you get the services you need at reasonable prices. After all you don't want to get interruptions changing from one tool to another. Instead, you want to concentrate on promoting your website and meeting customer orders.
Success does not come easily even in the online marketplace. So, select your domain name carefully to beat the odds. Make wise decisions from the start and you will be on the road to success.

Last modified onFriday, 05 April 2013 03:32
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