Domain Name and URL Selection Done Correctly Can Bring More Traffic to Your Website

November 24, 2011 by  Filed under: Domain 

What’s in a name? A name is really just a word or set of words by which a person or company is known. This is your identity. Your reputation, good or bad, is embodied in your name. It’s who you are.

When a husband and wife are about to have their first child, they spend days, weeks and sometimes months picking out just the right name for their little baby. Picking out a domain name should be no different. It’s your little baby, and if you want it to grow big and tall, make sure it has a name it can be proud of.

Now, I’m not suggesting that a website can actually be proud of its domain name. But, selecting a good domain name can really increase your site’s popularity in the search engines. This, in turn, brings visitors – I have to assume you WANT visitors.

Now before we go any further, we need to make sure that we are on the same page by defining a few terms. A domain name is the website address that people will either type in or click on to go to your website. Your domain name is also known as your URL. URL stands for Uniform Resource Locator. Don’t ask me why they call it that. It’s just a technical way of describing your website’s address.

Let’s take a look at the components of a good, quality domain name. Assume that you wanted to post news from France on your proposed website. It would be a good idea to include either the word “France” or “French” along with the word “news” in the URL. A great example of this technique is found in the URL, www.french-news.com. Anyone searching for French news on the Internet would have a much more likely chance of finding this website due to the key words “french” and “news” found in the URL address itself.

Let’s use another example. If your website was about kid shoes, be sure and include the words “kid” and “shoes” in the URL. All things being equal, the search engines favor websites whose domain name includes the key words that are being searched. While this is certainly the case for key words, search engines give no special treatment or preference to domain names that end in .com, .net, .org, .biz or any of the other multitude of URL extensions. Google, Yahoo and other search engines are, for the most part, blind to the URL extension of your domain name.

However, whenever possible it is important to pick an URL extension of .com because that’s what most people will remember when trying to go to your site. I know, I have a .net domain name. And, while it works just fine, it would certainly work better with an extension of .com. This really only applies to your customers who try to go to your website by directly typing in your domain name address. The search engines find it just fine, but your customers may not. My experience in this area is not one you should duplicate. Use .com whenever you can.

There is one other important aspect of picking a domain name. You want to make sure that the key words that you pick to use in your domain name get the most mileage possible. What do I mean by that? I mean that if you intend to sell shoes for kids on your website, you might consider using the key words “baby shoes” or “toddler shoes” as opposed to “kids shoes”. Why?

Here’s why. The key words “baby shoes” has about 5,610 searches and “toddlers shoes” as about 5,400 searches each month. The key words “kids shoes” has only 330 searches each month. Obviously more people are using the terms “baby shoes” and “toddler shoes” when looking on the Internet. Play the odds by selecting a domain name that incorporates effective key words.

So whether you’re selling floor mats, seat covers or baby shoes, the principles are the same. Use high quality, relevant, carefully selected key words in the URL address of your domain name. That means you’ll have to do some research prior to buying the domain name. But careful planning now, will pay great dividends later. So choose wisely.

Choosing the proper URL is the first step to operating a successful website. The key is common sense and research. There is no substitute for either one. Don’t get emotionally involved with a cutesy name just because it sounds good. Unless that’s already the name of your business, then you should consider one that is more keyword enhanced. Assuming that the rest of your site is properly optimize, the URL you pick for your website will help drive added visitors to your site every month.

What’s in a name? In a word – traffic. And traffic means customers. So get out that baby book of names and pick out a name for your new baby.

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