Why a good domain is Important for Optimization :
As you know perfectly well ,the domain name is what you type into the browser to get to your site. You already know lots of domain names of popular sites. It would make sense that mimicking them is good for SEO, but it actually isn’t, for various reasons we shall explain below. Choosing a domain name is one of the crucial aspects of your campaign if you’re just starting to experiment with your online business. Thinking in advance about it is just as crucial.
Many times it has been proven that domain names affect the ranking of your web site in search engines. With most other parts of your website, you’ve probably learned that it’s good to somehow include keywords in order to rank higher in search engines. That might be true, but to achieve the balance between a domain name you can drive traffic with and a domain name that can rank you higher , you will have to make some hard choices. To prepare you for them, here’s a list of the most common advice for people who are just about to start choosing a domain name.
Steer clear of hyphens and numbers :
Recent (and not so recent) research has shown that this is not a good practice. Hyphens are hard to remember by people who would want to come back to your site. Numbers are basically the same way, so if you don’t want the user to sit around thinking “was that site auto-tires6.com or auto-tires7.com ?”, you’d best avoid them.
Much talk has been going on as to using several keywords chained with hyphens in your URL, but it has been found that this tactic, albeit being used very much by SEOs in the early 2000s , is not as effective as one would think, and does more wrong than it does good.
Avoid having a similar domain name to a popular site :
Unless you want all the traffic to actually go there, it’s not recommended to take a domain name similar enough to drive people there by mistake, because really, that process works the other way around too. And guess where the visitors would go if they can’t clearly remember – to your site, or to a domain they’ve heard quite a lot of more times ?
Branding is crucial :
Though using keywords in your domain name is an ok idea, SEO-wise, you might not want to name your site bathroom-sponges-and-utensils.com , even if that’s what you sell. Indexing might happen relatively easy, but that’s too generic for anyone to remember, let alone type fast.
The best recipe will be to use your brand name + product, like VastcoInsurances.com (not sure if there’s such a domain name, I used it only for an example). This way you’ll benefit from branding and inserting a keyword for the search engine alike.
Building your brand also has other benefits in terms of SEO, since it becomes its own keyword which is very useful for large corporations who want to make large leaps in optimizing for search engines.
However , do not choose only the brand name or quirky title for your domain name. It might have worked for Ebay or Amazon , but they probably poured thousands of dollars into brand building.
Shorter is better, at least here:
A short URL has the undisputed advantage of not giving the ability to make many typos. It’s simple math that when you have more characters, more things can go wrong. Easier to type is an important feature for your users, but for search as well, since in the SERPs , sites with too long URLs are often avoided, probably due to some yet unexplained psychological phenomenon. One reason might be that users think that most of the good sites they use commonly have short URLs ( like google.com or facebook.com)
Do not keyword stuff:
Probably the worst mistake , which sadly many people make, is to stuff their domain name full of keywords. Now if you want not to look reputable, go ahead and add all your keywords into a domain name that makes no sense . A good SEO chooses a reasonable compromise of one , at most two keywords, that would logically fit into the domain name.
Finding the balance between branding and SEO is perhaps the paramount thing of choosing an SEO-compatible domain. But don’t go into either extreme, or you risk failure.