Choosing a good domain name is becoming harder and harder. So many times you think of the perfect name only to find it is already taken.
What makes a good domain name? The best names are brandable and contain keywords.
A Brandable Domain:
When choosing a domain name also consider how you’re going to brand your business. A short easy-to-remember domain is highly valued. If you can’t get the .com version of your domain, you may want to reconsider your decision; people often assume the extension is .com and may end up at a different site.
I do regret how long my email address. “dandelionwebdesign.com” is a good name but many people misspell dandelion with a y!
Check out Twitter and other social media sites and make sure your preferred username is available so you can keep your brand consistent. Brand building may trump the use of keywords in a domain.
SEO Value of Keyword in Domain:
My experience is that there is a lot of value to have keywords in a domain. My site is on page one for “Web Design Toronto”. I believe that having Web Design as part of my url has helped. Even if Google dials down the value in the algorithm there is still SEO value in continuing the practice, and that value comes from anchor text linking.
Anchor Text Linking Value of Keyword in Domain:
One important reason to use keywords in your domain name is because of anchor text linking. Anchor text is the visible, clickable text in a hyperlink. “Click Here” is a poor way to create a link… it doesn’t tell the search engines what the link is about. We know that search engines give weight to the keywords used in a link. Often when other sites and blogs link to your site they will use your business name or your domain name as anchor text of a link. Having keywords in your domain will add value to that link.
In this video Google’s Matt Cutts argues for the importance of going with a brandable url. He also announces that Google is going to give slightly less weight to keywords in a domain.