What tech marketers need to know about brand domains

Choosing a domain name isn’t always as simple as it sounds. Tech companies need to keep a few considerations in mind to ensure their website is branded effectively, achieves good SEO, and doesn't infringe on someone else’s intellectual property. Like most things, the trick is to get the basics right; e.g. a domain name should be short, easy to type, and memorable. Too many words, letters or numbers can be confusing and make the website hard to find... or even worse, it may send customers to the competition.

Consider your target market. Are they mostly Kiwi customers, or do you want to achieve a global reach? A .co.nz extension may be all you need if you're just planning to sell locally, but if you want to appeal to an international audience, you're best to go with a .com domain. That said, it’s not a bad idea to buy both; it not only stops your competition from using the domain, but it also gives you a broader reach, ideal for the tech solutions you want to sell worldwide.

It’s important to try and be as original as possible. This is where you need to get your Google on. Search for your domain name and anything that closely matches it. Even if it is legally acceptable, you may still encounter problems. For instance, movie names are not trademarked but typically there are difficulties if someone tries to use them. Simple phrases in our lexicon, such as ‘Hula Hoop’, are in fact, registered trademarked names. Do your research and if in doubt, don’t use it. If you have to change your domain later, you risk losing goodwill and customers.

So, those are the basics. Let's take a look at some of the specifics.

What's in a domain name - the things search engines love

There are about 341.7 million domain name registrations out there - and that number is growing all the time. Finding one that makes you stand out from the crowd is a tall order, but we've got some tips to help you craft one that's unique.

  1. Stay on brand - your business name and what you sell should stand out. If you're occupying a niche, find a way to include it as this will help boost organic traffic to your website.

  2. Include keywords - if you can add a keyword or two, you'll benefit from an SEO boost. We'll drill down into how to choose keywords later in the blog.

  3. Don't be vague - the trick here is balancing a name that's clear and easy to remember but also catchy and memorable.

  4. Consider using a domain name generator - take some keywords and brand-related words you've come up with and pop them into a domain name generator, which will then give you a list of available names to choose from. There are some good options, such as:
  1. Move fast - once you've decided on a name, don't dilly-dally when it comes to registering it. New domain names are being registered all the time; don't risk the chance that someone else might get there first.

Put these tips into practise, and you'll come up with a well-thought-out domain name that will boost your SEO and rankings, as well as providing your target market with a clear idea of what to expect when they land on your website.

What is Organic SEO?

It's about using white hat SEO strategies to boost your website traffic. What's white hat SEO? In a nutshell, it's SEO that align with the terms and conditions of search engines like Google. The idea is to improve your search rankings while maintaining the integrity of your website.

Organic SEO is about using natural practices, such as:

  • Content creation
  • Technical enhancement
  • Outreach

Organic means you're using natural SEO methods and paid tactics to improve your ranking on a search engine results page (SERP).

How to choose an SEO-friendly domain name using the right keywords

The use of the right keywords is essential. Your SEO visibility increases if you can use a relevant keyword in your domain name, as it will help to generate organic traffic to your website.

However, think carefully before using an exact match domain (EMD), e.g., ‘wheretobuycheapwine’. While this may seem like a good way to get on the top of search results, Google is making it harder for these sites to stay on top.

So, although keywords are crucial, don't go nuts - remember what we said about keeping your domain name short and sweet. Do some keyword research as this will help direct your domain name, and look for ones with low-medium competition, as this improves the chances of ranking higher.

How to change over your domain

This isn't something that happens often, but when it does, it's usually because:

  • You're rebranding your business
  • You've come up with a better name
  • A competitor has chosen one that's too similar to yours

If you are faced with the need to change your name, it's not difficult. Here's how to do it seamlessly:

  1. Choose your new name - register it and assign it to your existing website.

  2. Update your marketing materials - logos, letterheads, email signatures - anything that has your website address on it.

  3. Redirect traffic - get in touch with your web host about this. It might be something they need to do, or they'll tell you how to do it yourself.

  4. Communicate the name change - using social media, email marketing and any other communications tools you have, let all your contacts know you've changed your domain name. Explain why you've decided to make the change.

Changing your domain name is easy, but you need a very good reason to do it, so don't make the decision to go ahead lightly.

Keep all these tips in mind, and you'll find that choosing the right domain name for your tech business doesn't have to be a long or complicated process. As you research keywords and brainstorm, remember to keep your brand and niche firmly front-of-mind, and you're on your way to crafting a domain name that will become an important business asset.

Want to know more about SEO optimisation? Read our client case study on how SEO resulted in increased website performance. Reach out to us if you’re considering switching over your domain, we’ll be happy to help you.

Updated November 2022

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