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How To Guides: Domain Names

What's in a Name?
A domain name is a Web address like www.mystore.com. It is well worth the money to register your own domain name. Nothing looks more unprofessional than telling your potential clients to shop at www.somebody-elses-name.com/~mystore. Although many "perfect" names have been taken, there are still plenty out there, so don't be discouraged.

Tips on Choosing a Name
While choosing a domain name is not an exact science, here are some tips you can follow:

  1. Keep it short. Although it's not always possible, short names are generally easier to remember, and easier to type in. If your company name is long, you can ignore this tip. Using your company name is usually a good idea.

  2. Try to choose a name that is memorable, or one that is easy to say. Try saying your name out loud. If you chose sethssarsaparillasodas.com, you may want to rethink your decision. And, as you can see from the preceding example, try to find a name that is easy to spell.

  3. Consider buying variations on your domain name, like the dot-net or dot-org versions of your (hopefully) dot-com name. You might also want to purchase common misspellings of your name, if there are any. Or, if there are variations of your name available, you may want to snatch them up, too. For instance, if you are DoctorDan.com, try to get DrDan.com and DocDan.com, too. Many people type addresses inaccurately, or don't remember your exact name, and it pays to takes advantage of that. (You can have these names redirected to your site).

New Domains
With the recent additions of new domains like ".biz" and ".info", and with the temptation to use country extensions like ".tv", it would seem like the market for new domain names is getting easier. But they are not widely recognized yet. And remember, anything that makes your potential client leery about your legitimacy is to be avoided. It may take some time for people to accept these new extensions. People still equate ".com" with "commerce".

How Do I Get One?
With the deregulation of domain name registration, prices have dropped, and you can now routinely register your domain name for less than $15 year (check out IMENA.COM.UA, for one). Most sites like this will let you search to see if your desired name is available. If it is, you can purchase it then and reserve it.



 
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