Choosing a domain name is fraught with traps from both marketing and legal standpoints. Assuming that all that you need to do is find a snappy, short, pronounceable, and memorable domain name would be a bad decision. You have to be careful when choosing a name that will help your business without landing you in legal trouble. Highlighted below are some of the pitfalls to avoid when choosing a domain name:
Choosing a Domain Name that Is Difficult to Say
Whatever name you choose ought to be easy to say. This makes it easier for visitors to relay it to other people. If referrals are an important part of your business, a name that is easy to say will be an asset. Difficult names are also difficult to remember. This means that you will most likely lose repeat business, especially if some of the buyers simply stumble on your website. Also, beware of words that are difficult to spell. If you are targeting international clientele, you should know that different words have different spelling in different parts of the world.
Going with an Irrelevant Domain Name
While there is nothing wrong with being creative, you should not go with just any name. Your business is likely to grow, meaning that changing the domain name later will be tricky. It is true that registering a new name is still possible. However, it is likely to mean lost business, especially if you do not communicate clearly to your clients regarding the change. Beware of narrow names, too. In case your business will expand to include other areas, ensure that the domain name you choose is adequate.
Choosing a Trademarked Domain Name
You should also be careful about existing domain names. While you can always hire a URDP lawyer in case of trouble, you will not have any claim on a trademarked domain name. Understand that in addition to losing the name, you will be subject to expensive lawsuits. If there are potential trademark conflicts, do not move ahead before they are resolved.
There are names similar to yours out there. Researching what happens in case anyone mistypes a letter or types the wrong top-level domain (TLD) extension. For instance, what will happen if potential visitors type “.net” instead of “.com?” If such a mistake lands them to a competitor’s site, it will mean lost business. If it leads them to an inappropriate page, it will be likely to affect the reputation of your business.
Mistakes with Top-level Domain (TLD) Extension Choice
There are plenty of options to choose from regarding TLDs. You should not choose just any. Be careful to choose a TLD that is perfect for your business. TLDs such as “.net” and “.com” are popular. However, they might not be ideal if you offer specified services. With the increased rates of cybercrime, you should also be careful to avoid TLDs that sound spammy. If your business is limited to your country, consider going with a country-specific domain.
Finding an outstanding, unregistered domain name would be tricky. However, this should not make you choose just any name. Most importantly, avoid trademarked names, whether you intend to stay a small-scale business or not.