Domain Name of a Website – 10 Steps to Choose the Right One

Tina Zennand 15 November, 2021

Over the years of developing complete solutions for websites, we have had many questions from MotoCMS customers on finding the best hosting providers and choosing a domain name for their online presence. As this question deserves to be thoroughly discussed, we thought about a cheat sheet article on selecting the right domain name. Hopefully, this post will answer most of your questions on this subject and help you to determine the best domain name for a website.

Domain Name

With each day, it is becoming harder and harder to find a laconic, easy-to-spell, memorable, and available domain name that wouldn’t cost you a pretty penny. We hope these simple yet indispensable tips will help you avoid difficulties searching for and registering a domain name.

Choosing a Domain Name for a Website: Contents

  • Tie the domain name with your brand
  • Don’t choose a domain name for a website based only on keywords
  • Make it simple and short
  • Choose the domain name that doesn’t need an explanation
  • Avoid hyphenated names and numbers
  • Think about the extension (.com, .org, .net, etc.)
  • Think about copyright issues
  • Use domain generators to search for available domains
  • Choose a good domain registrar
  • Register your domain for the maximum available period
  • 7 tools for choosing a domain name
  • Conclusion

Connect Domain Name With Your Brand

On average, most business websites (small and medium), which are in the TOP 10 in SERPs with industry-related keywords, place in the TOP 10 rankings with branded keywords. That means when people are looking for your website, they are first trying to enter your business or your product’s name. Some people really think about the idea of using some generic names like “shoes.com” (e.g., if a person sells shoes) for their websites (we can only imagine how much those domains would cost:)) But the truth is, if you are looking for shoes online, you might already have some brands in mind. Probably, you would more likely try some branded names like “ugg.com” or some well-known companies’ names like “zappos.com” or “myntra.com”, rather than “shoes.com”. That is why it is essential a domain name matches your brand.

Build Brand

What if the domain name you want is owned by someone else? The answer would depend on how important it is for you to get that particular name. You can try to purchase the domain from the owner. Look up that domain’s “whois” info and contact the owner to find out if he is willing to sell it. If the domain is for sale, you should be aware that the owner might want to charge higher than you would typically pay for that name if it were new. On the other hand, if you are just starting up, you might consider a cheaper alternative or name your website after obtaining the desired domain name.

 Don’t Choose a Domain Name of a Website Based on Keywords

Tips for Choosing Domain Name

Keywords, especially long-tail keywords, are excellent, but they don’t matter as much here as some think. So, don’t be obsessed with using your primary keywords in the website’s URL. Another thing is if your website name contains an industry-related keyword. If you can get a short, memorable version that includes both your website name and primary keyword, that would be perfect. However, you should never forget that the main keyword in your domain name is not the key to high ranking. Choosing a domain name with your primary keyword is only one factor among many others. Thus, the best solution is to think of an easy, memorable, brand-related, and available domain name without paying a fortune.

 Choose Simple and Short Name

Name for Your Domain

When choosing a domain name, try to avoid the following:

  • hard-to-spell words,
  • long and too clever words,
  • double letters,
  • numbers,
  • other complexities.

You surely don’t want to be a company with a great website that no one can remember. People won’t be able to tell others about you when your domain name is hard to spell. Try to find a name with only one possible spelling. Choosing a domain name with such spelling will make it easier for users to reach your website. While your domain name can be up to 67 characters long, try to use up to 10 consecutive characters. In fact, this is the case where shorter is better.

 Intuitive Name

Domain Name of a Website

While choosing a domain name, make sure the selected name doesn’t require much explanation when you speak it out loud. Imagine your domain looks like “designglimpsed.com”, and you are trying to tell it to someone: “D-E-S-I-G-N then G-L-I-M-P-S-E-D dot com”… Not that easy, huh? Especially, it is true when you have to explain it to a person who is not so good at English spelling. So, make sure that your domain name doesn’t need a complex explanation, particularly when you are pronouncing it at some noisy place or over the phone.

 No Hyphens and Numbers

Domain For Website

Although search engines distinguish your keywords with hyphens better, we would suggest you not to use a hyphenated name (if the situation allows avoiding that). When users are typing your domain that they have heard from someone, they will probably not type the hyphens. As a result, people may end up at your competitor’s website. Besides, when you are speaking out a domain with dashes loud, the flow of a potentially good domain will be spoiled: “i-design-for-free.com”  – “i dash design dash for dash free dot com”.

Using numbers can also make the domain harder to use. Moreover, it can be confusing and cause mistakes. Tell someone your website is “greendesign7.com” and the confusion is guaranteed. So, choosing a domain name with numbers is not a great idea.

 TLD Extensions

Good Example of Domain Name

There are around 157 million .COM, 13,6 million .NET and 10,4 million .ORG domains on the web as of October 2021. Overall, .COM is highly recommended as it is the most widely used top-level domain (TLD) in the world. Moreover, most people who use the internet still assume that .COM is the only possible choice. So, make sure you will not lose traffic from those guys who think that .COM is all that’s out there. Besides, choosing a .NET or .BIZ can be interpreted by some people as if you simply lack the business acumen to find an appropriate .COM for your business (please no offense if your domain is .NET or .BIZ:)). The .ORG domains are really good for choosing a domain name for organizations and non-profits.

Domain Statistics

If your business cannot benefit from an international audience, it makes sense for you to get a country-specific domain when choosing a domain name. For instance, if you provide such services to the local community as pizza delivery or taxi business, you’ll greatly benefit from a local domain name. Precisely, it can become a part of local business marketing for you.

The advantage of having a local domain is the awareness of customers. People in your country who are potentially interested in using your services will know that they are dealing with a local company. In fact, that is what they actually need. All in all, if a recruiting agency operates in, let’s say, the UK territory, the clients will most likely prefer using services of the company with a UK domain rather than with an international one.

 Copyright and Trademark

Brand Name

When choosing a domain name, it is crucial to ensure you are not infringing on anyone’s copyright with your domain name. Visit copyright.gov and investigate the situation before purchasing the domain. Do not consider names with brand-related keywords like “facebookthemes” or “adobehelper”. Some large companies are serious about suing businesses for using their branded keywords in the domain names.

That said, you should still search a premium quality domain that aligns with your market niche and brand identity, as you could find one that not only sidesteps copyright concerns but also makes your site easily discoverable.

How to Check Available Domain Name – Use Generators

Domain generators (search engines) allow you to really easily find out if the domain name you are interested in is available. Besides, you can not only check the domain for availability, but you can also find relevant and worthy domain name suggestions or variations for your business. You can use websites like FREE Business Name Generator, Lean Domain Search, Domain Name Search, Nameboy.com, LOGO.com Business Name Generator, or NameBounce to choose your domain or even a name for your company. We will give you a longer list of good tools that can help you to determine your domain name further in this post.

Choose Domain Name of a Website

After you have decided upon the domain name you want, we suggest you check it for possible domain abuse. This is in case you are going to buy the domain from an existing owner or you have found a good deal on a recently expired domain. Check existing backlinks in Google (“link:www.yoursite.com”), define whether it’s safe on Safeweb.Norton or use a service like Wayback Machine to make sure the domain name is clean.

 Reputable Domain Name Registrar


Deal with a reputable domain registrar only. Do not purchase domains from companies that are not recognized enough, because you will be at risk of losing your domain if the registrar goes out of business. Most large registrars (like GoDaddy, or NetworkSolutions, or Namecheap) provide decent services at a low cost.

Since you are (most likely) a current (or future) MotoCMS user, we recommend you to use the BlueHost service. If you choose our templates, you get free hosting and SSL as well as a free domain name for a year. The MotoCMS developers in collaboration with QA experts have found Bluehost to be a very reliable provider in terms of business ethics, plus it is fully compatible with MotoCMS.

 Max Expiration Period

If you are planning to stay online with your business for a long time and you like the chosen domain, register it for the maximum possible period (which is usually around 10 years). According to some experts, the websites registered for a long period of time have a solid benefit in search engines’ eyes. Most search engines do not trust much of the domains which have been registered for a year or so. And you know that trust means high SERP results. So, you may want to take care of that, too.

7 Tools for Choosing a Domain Name

Tips For Searching Domain Name

Here is the list of good web tools with a variety of features, which we hope will help you find a good domain name for your business. Of course, this is not a full list of all the tools available for choosing a domain name. Also, please note that the tools are placed randomly on the list, so it doesn’t mean that #1 is the best and the last one is the worst. You can just try them out and choose a tool (or some of them) that fits best for you.

Looka Business Name Generator

It helps you brainstorm ideas by using your keywords or industry so if you don’t even have a company name and can’t create it on your own, it’ll help you. For example, we tried to check “food order” and got lots of unique names, then chose YumBig and found out its search volume, social media availability, then alternative domains, and even ready logo ideas. A genuinely impressive toll, don’t you think?

Brand Name Generator

Great for blogs to enter a keyword and select a niche to view relevant domain name ideas.  Double-check the availability of the name and Twitter handle by clicking on your preferred name.


With this tool, you can explore the top-level domains of other owners which have become popular. Furthermore, you can also search for TLDs that are available, which is vital for choosing a domain name. This tool checks domain registries directly in real-time and shows you which one is taken, the domain name for sale, and available ones.

Bust a Name

This domain finder with a set of useful features will help you to find words similar to your search, sort your search results in a number of ways, and save them for later use. While choosing a domain name with the help of this tool, you can enter your keywords with company name, and see the results of their combinations, also choose the domain name of a website from such options as adding prefixes, suffixes, plurals, or hyphens t achieve better results. If you don’t want to combine certain words, this amazing tool can help you with this, too.


This interesting tool will suggest names for your website by combining beginnings and endings automatically. You just need to enter words in the left box and enter some endings. The tool provides you with suggestions for names, so you don’t have to come up with all the names on your own. If you like a name, you can check if it is available right there.


The Domize search engine is a clear and easy-to-use tool for quick search of available domains. You can install their widget on your website so that your visitors can use the search engine right from your website.

Buy Hosting

Choosing a Domain Name – Conclusion

Choosing a name for your website is a creative process, that involves proper solutions to definite issues. Approach the process of choosing a domain in a rational strategic way and you will definitely succeed in finding an elegant, memorable, and successful name for your website.

If names are not correct, the language will not be in accordance with the truth of things.  ~Confucius

11 responses to “Domain Name of a Website – 10 Steps to Choose the Right One”

  1. Mark says:

    http://namemesh.com is also quite powerful 🙂

  2. Victoria James says:

    I agree with the points mentioned here as the right way to find
    the ideal domain for your website. I wish I had read this before starting off
    my search for a good domain name for my website.

    I used the domain registration and hosting service from http://www.bigrock.com for finding the ideal one for my website. I had looked up quite a few domain registration and web hosting
    companies before I landed on Big Rock’s website. As far as I can see, Big Rock
    offers ideal domain name registration and web hosting for the clients. So,
    after searching for the ideal domain name, I would suggest people opt for Big
    Rock for registration and hosting.

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  5. Very nice analysis. every webmaster should read this.

  6. NicholasRedro says:

    These are the helpful techniques. If you want to create a website but don’t have expertise,no problem. We offer custom control panel alongsdie cPanel. You can easily create website,subdomains,,ftp accounts,add e-mail accountsand access site statistics.

  7. PK Domain says:

    Probably, the best article i have read. Very useful tips, one tip that i have get i feel that is best one is “Don’t Chose a domain based just one keyword”.
    What you say about this domain name?

  8. jerryperes says:

    Your tips are very good for purchasing a new domain name. I will follow the tips when I Purchase new domain name. Thanks for nice information. Read More http://bit.ly/2arhXa5

  9. Thanks so much for adding my Blog Name Generator to your article.

    A great overview of how to name a website.

    Naming seems like such a simple process, but its so important when you consider that its the first thing that people experience when they interact with your brand. The tendency is to come up with a name that means something to you not your prospective customer and that’s a big mistake.

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Tags: domain name marketing tools web development
Author: Tina Zennand
Tina is a writer who has been working with MotoCMS since early 2010. In her articles she covers various aspects of web design and web development. She is also a marketing guru for MotoCMS websites. You can follow her on Twitter.