How to Name a Website and Choose the Best Domain Name

3 tips for choosing the best website name for your media company, blog, portal or subscription website

Over the past decade or so, I’ve had the privilege and downright fun of getting to help name a few hundred websites. Most of the names I’ve helped generate have been for portals and blogs like Bible History Daily, one of my personal favorites. Occasionally, a client asks me to help name his entire company. American Lantern Press, another of my favorites, has now been going strong for more than a decade.

Here are three strategies that may help you name your website if I’m not around to lend a hand.

Keep it short and memorable

Of coarse, I feel that Mequoda Group is some of my best work. It’s pretty hard these days to come up with a seven-letter URL and a name that is easy to remember, if not to pronounce. As many of you know, Mequoda is a shortened version of “media quote daily.” Sekada.de Is another example of this strategy that I like very much.

A website by any other name

While the above strategy has the advantage of giving you a short memorable URL, it does nothing for you in terms of findability. If you want to create a website name that helps you get found, you’ll probably need to come up with a phrase that’s three words long. If were talking portals, you may be able to get the word you want into a two-word title, like Knitting Daily. When we launched the site back in 2007, a search for “knitting” would have revealed our homepage at about position 467, give or take a few listings. Today, the site shows up on page 1. Having one of your super keywords in your domain name is a good thing.

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Combine a color, a noun and a keyword

When I was launching Blue Dolphin Magazines, I was racking my brain for a better name. My colleague and advisor Bill Sahlman told me to stop looking for a better alternative because one did not exist. In the school of naming websites and domains, a three-word phrase, which includes a noun, a color, and a keyword that defines your space, offers both memorability and findability. It doesn’t get any better.

The cynics among you may be saying, “but all the good stuff has been taken.” And to you I say nay. With about five minutes of research I discovered that any among you could choose to rename your company White Pig Media, and get the two and three word versions of the domain name. Say what you may, but the name is memorable and says what you do. I mean the “media” part, not the “pig” part. All kidding aside, I think you get the idea.

How to Name a Website: Combine a color, a noun and a keyword

Website naming is fun

There is probably nothing a wordsmith enjoys more than the opportunity to create a nameplate, name a company, or choose a domain name. The process is fun, challenging and results in birthing a brand that could last for decades or even millennia. I ask you, what else could you do that would be more fun than this?

I do love my job!

PS: Here’s a great resource for choosing the best place to host your domains (http://www.top10domainhosting.com/) once you chosen the ideal name for your website.

Comments

    Very insightful post. Definitely interested in acquiring some top domain names soon and I’ll definitely come back to this article when I do so. I could use your points to buy aged domain names at DomainKa.com like a pro!

    Reply
    Linton

    My personal style is to “dotcompose” a name that tells what the site is about or what someone searching is likely to type in. The truth is that with enough advertising almost any name can become memorable . “Yahoo” “Bing” and “Google” might have been the giberish a baby would utter when learning to talk but for the power of advertising dollars . The “dotcom” extension also is expected, anything else is an impediment.

    Reply

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