domains vector

If the recent mishaps of politicians not registering their domain names are any indication, registering your domain name is crucial. So how do you find a domain name that best suits your business? In this post, I’ll answer some of your domain registration questions to assist in finding a domain that best matches your business, and sets you up for success in online marketing.

Why You Need to Register Your Domain Name

Quite simply, you need to register your domain name to avoid someone else buying it and damaging your brand or reputation. Take the most recent example of Carly Fiorina. She announced her plans to run for President, but failed to register her domain name. Someone bought and decided to use it to show the world how many people she laid off at Hewlett Packard. News media picked up the story and amplified it to expose her domain name blunder to millions.

You can avoid this mistake and give your business a consistent identity at the same time. Besides helping you avoid domain hijacking by unfriendly foes, registering your domain name will provide a critical component to your overall business identity. Since many people begin the purchase process via the web, you need to register a domain name to have a memorable address which reflects your brand AND makes it easy for customers to find you.

How to Find a Domain Name

There are two basic pathways for finding a domain name, depending on whether or not you already have a business name.

You already have a business name

If you already have a business name, check the availability of your brand. If you’re a Webs user, go to the top of the site builder and click the ‘Dashboard’ link. Then, click the ‘Domains & Email’ tab and enter your brand name along with a top level domain (TLD) selector such as “.com.” If your domain name is available, the ‘Check Availability’ button will change to ‘Purchase Domain.’ Start domain name registration by clicking that button.

Webs Domain Registration Screenshot

You should then check the availability of alternative TLDs such as “.net” and buy those to prevent someone from impersonating your brand. The Fiorina campaign owned, but failed to secure the “.org” TLD. To go the extra mile, think of variations or misspellings of your brand and buy those as well to build a defensive domain arsenal.

If your business name is unavailable, see the next section.

You don’t have a business name (or domain is unavailable)

If you don’t already have a name picked out for your business, now is a great time to choose one!  Take your time, be creative, and come up with a captivating moniker and logo that sum up the essence of your business.

As a first step, list key characteristics of your business: who you are, what you do, and what you offer. For example, let’s say your business is a coffee shop in Seattle. Your list might look like this:

  • Who you are: Seattle-based coffee shop
  • What you do: Provide fresh coffee and a welcoming experience to local patrons
  • What you offer: Coffee, tea, and a local gathering place

Next, you’ll want to research how people search for these activities and offerings. Begin by searching for some of the keywords from your list to see what suggestions arise. Starting at Google (or search engine of choice), begin typing “Seattle coffee shop” or “coffee shop Seattle,” then observe suggestions. If you see your keywords show up, then you know you’ve hit on a popular search phrase.

Google Search Screenshot

Next, take these same terms and enter them into Google’s Keyword Planner to get an estimate of search volume.

Google Keyword Planner Tool Screenshot

Settle on a few of these keywords and determine if there’s a way to tie your brand to search phrases.
As an example, if your brand is “Jill’s Coffee” you might consider checking the availability of domain names like “”, “”, or “”.

If you get stuck coming up with ideas, try Estibot’s domain brainstorming tools. They offer nine tools specifically for domain brainstorming in addition to many other domain-related tools. In particular, their ‘Domain Idea Tool’ helps you generate domains based on keyword data and search results.

After you’ve narrowed down a couple domain name ideas, check availability using the instructions provided in the You already have a business name section of this post. Then buy your chosen domain name, additional TLDs, and variations.

With these techniques, you will be on your way to owning a domain name that matches your business and sets you up for online marketing success!

Need a domain name? Create a premium account today and get a free custom domain name.

About the Author: Anthony Long is the head of SEO for Webs. He leads the organic search strategy and execution for both Webs and Pagemodo, with an emphasis on data-driven optimization that balances proven SEO tactics with emerging search trends.

7 Responses

  1. Reply
    May 15, 2015 - 08:56 PM

    Useful info. Lucky me I discovered your site unintentionally, and I am stunned why this accident didn’t came about earlier!
    I bookmarked it.

  2. Reply
    May 17, 2015 - 04:47 AM

    v niceeeeeeee

  3. Reply
    May 18, 2015 - 05:35 AM

    First of all I would like to say fantastic blog!
    I had a quick question in which I’d like to ask if you do
    not mind. I was curious to know how you center
    yourself and clear your head prior to writing. I’ve had a
    difficult time clearing my thoughts in getting my thoughts out.
    I do take pleasure in writing but it just seems like
    the first 10 to 15 minutes are generally wasted simply just trying
    to figure out how to begin. Any suggestions or tips? Appreciate it!

    • Reply
      Deanna Zaucha
      Jun 16, 2015 - 10:03 AM

      Always great to start out with an outline! Helps you collect your thoughts and create an organized piece.

  4. Reply
    Mark Branson
    Apr 12, 2016 - 02:26 AM

    Well said Anthony. Choosing the right domain name for website is little difficult because your website is often the very first impression on customers. Domain name should be unique and easy to understand. So, think wisely before choosing domain name for your business.

  5. Reply
    Geny Marsh
    Aug 09, 2016 - 02:59 AM

    The post is somewhat bigger but is filled with good information about getting a good domain name. It’s not always required to have a .com domain name. Many other domain name values can be increased that depends upon always the quality of content and if traffic to your site wants to come back again and again.

  6. Reply
    Nov 03, 2016 - 04:22 AM

    Finding the right name for your startup can have a significant impact on your success. The wrong name can do worse than fail to connect with customers. A must read for all who are searching for a domain name.

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