Why is it important for your consulting business to have its own domain name on the web? To put it simply, whether your expertise runs to management, finance or IT, your clients will not only expect you to be online, but also to have a modern and professional-looking presence on the web.
Having your own domain name helps you project the right image and take more control over your online presence. A domain name like TaxConsulting.co.za comes across better than TaxConsulting.freewebsite.com or TaxConsulting@gmail.com.
In this article, we’ll discuss how to select a domain name that’s perfect for your consulting business.
Seven tips on how to select a domain name
Your domain will anchor your consulting firm’s online identity for years to come. Use these tips to avoid the most common pitfalls.
- Keep it simple.
- Try to stay “on brand”.
- Consider all your options.
- Include keywords.
- Make it memorable.
- Make sure people can say it.
- Do your research.
Before we launch into naming best practices, let’s touch briefly on what a domain is.
First thing’s first: What is a domain name?
This is a quick way for people to find something online (website, document, file). The main aim of the domain name system (DNS) is to help users get to where they want without having to remember a complex series of numbers (or IP addresses). Think of it like a saved contact in your smartphone. You don’t need to remember the contact’s number, just their name.
How to select a domain name
The name you choose for your business website will probably be around for a while. Ideally, you should check the availability of domain names before naming your business, since they should match. Here are some thoughts on how to select a domain name for your consulting business.
1. Keep it simple
Since it will serve as your web address, it’s best to keep your domain name simple.
Simple domain names are easier to type and remember than those that are complex or use slang. Avoid substituting words with letters or numbers (like ready2go or helpUgrow).
This can lead to confusion and is generally less professional in appearance, unless it’s the actual name of your business (e.g. Consultants R Us).
2. Try to stay “on brand”
If you’ve put any thought into coming up with your own brand, it’s important to factor it in when contemplating how to select a domain name. Trying to include all or part of the name of your business in the domain is usually a good place to start. You might need to get creative, though, if the domain you want is already registered to someone else. Which brings us to the next point.
3. Consider all your options
For many years, the preferred domain extensions for South African companies have been .co.za and .com. Other domains like .net and .org are also well known. However, new domain extensions like .consulting open new choices for domain names for your business. Here are a few examples that might work for your consulting agency:
Since these new domains are more descriptive than the old ones, everyone who sees your web address will know what you do.
4. Include keywords
If the name of your business isn’t available in a form you want to use, another option you can consider is using keywords that describe your business or the area you service. What terms are people using to search for consultants like you? Those are your keywords.
For instance, if you provide marketing consulting in Bloemfontein, you could go with BloemfonteinMarketing.consulting or BloemfonteinMarketing.co.za. Keep in mind that keywords in your domain should also appear in the words on your website for better results.
5. Make it memorable
One of the main reasons domain names exist is to make it easier for people to find resources online (and remember where they found them so they can go back when they need it again). Making a domain memorable makes it easier for current and future customers to get to your website.
6. Make sure people can say it
Having an unpronounceable domain name can also lead to a potential loss of free word-of-mouth advertising. You might say to yourself, “People are going to visit my site using a link I share with them or that they find online anyway”. That might be true but having an unpronounceable domain name places a definite roadblock on word-of-mouth referrals.
7. Do your research
You’ll want to make sure the domain name you choose won’t cause legal problems for your business down the road. Copyright and trademark claims can cause the loss of the domain name, not to mention the other penalties they carry.
Next step: Register your domain name
Hopefully, the wheels of your mind have been turning as you’ve read through this article and now you have some great ideas for your new domain name. Now what? The answer: click here to see if the domain name you want is available for purchase. You’ll have an answer in seconds.