Finding Available Domain Names - Buying a Domain Name
Some days finding available domain names can seem impossible. There is nothing more frustrating then finally thinking of how you want to be known to the World Wide Web only to find out that the domain name has already been bought. Internet real estate is overcrowded, but you can still find a domain name that you'll be able to remember.
Do a domain name search. Just because you have looked up a domain name and it's not showing up doesn't mean that it's available for purchase. Many people buy domains and then never develop the website. One of the easiest ways to search for a domain name is to let domain name services do the work for you. Sites such as godaddy or bluehost will search for the domain name and tell you if it's available for purchase at no charge. If the .com is not availble it will offer you the choice to buy an .info, .net, .org, .us or .biz. Be wary of this because it can hurt your reputation. Think about the last time you saw one of these extensions that ranked well in the search engines and the owner of the .com site might be angry with you for riding on their domain name.
Base your domain name purchase on keywords. This will help you rank well in search engines. If you are just starting out in website and blog building then look for a keyword with multiple words that just gets a few thousand visitors a month. Keywords let you know the order of words that people are searching for and you may be more likely to rank for an exact search engine phrase if the keyword is in your domain name. When searching for a domain name that is already taken you'll be shown additional domains. These domains might add a word like "blog" to the end or free to the beginning. Put the new phrase in a keyword tool to see if people actually search for it. Sure, probably no one has taken your given name yet if it's uncommon. However, not a lot of people will be searching for your given name either. If you are in the business of self promotion, such as a writer, or just putting up your resume online a domain name that has your personal name in it might be appropriate. If you are going with SEO targeted content and want to monetize your site with contextual ads, it's better to go with a domain name that specifically tells the customer what you're all about.
White it's important to rank well in the online world, look for available domain names that you can also use offline. You can make keywords catchy so that people can remember the phrase in commercials, jingles and advertisements. When you tell someone what you do for a living they'll probably ask for your URL. You need to find a domain name that is easy to remember, the less words the better. For SEO purposes you also need to clearly get your keyword phrase in there. If you have a longer domain name, get it printed up on business cards and fliers so you and get the word out to your offline friends.
Pull out the thesaurus. Yes, you'll be using a book for something high tech. It's a novel idea I know. Look up synonyms for your keywords and then plug those into the keyword tool. This will help you think about your niche in a whole new light and you'll be able to find different versions of your desired domain name, hopefully some of those will even be available.
Decide whether your domain name is going to be for personal use only. This will expand your options when looking for domain name availability but can also affect you in the long term. If you just want to keep in touch with family or friends and display your wit then having a keyword domain name might not be as important to you. You'll be able to make clever puns in your domain name and even go for rhymes that will be easier for your visitors to remember. This will establish your online presence but you need to decide right from the start whether you'll even want to monetize your site. You won't be able to change your domain name without starting over from scratch and hoping that your visitors and search engine rankings follow. Many bloggers get in it just for fun and as a way to share ideas and then find out later on that they have a huge audience that they can make a living off of. Plan from the start to be successful so you have room to expand.
If you are set on a domain name, wait for it to become available. You can look up the WHOIS information to find out who owns the domain and when it expires. Most registrars send multiple notices to a person before their domain name expires. You will also be able to tell how long the person has had the domain name, so don't get your hopes up if it's been around for a number of years. If the webmaster hasn't developed the site, you may be able to make an offer so they can flip the site and you can get the exact domain name you want.
When buying domain names remember the adage. "if it seems too good to be true it probably is". If you've found a short domain name, or one centered on high paying key words, be wary of it. Sure, most of the good domain names are taken, but every once in awhile you'll find a diamond in the rough. Before you press the purchase key, look up the domain name to see why no one else has it yet. You'll want to double check for any spelling mistakes. Also, break the words apart, and then look at them to see how they look together. There might have been vulgar words hidden in the middle that is why reputable businesses are staying away from it.
Finding an available domain name that is actually a good domain name takes research and a little bit of luck. However, it's worth the investment in time. A good domain usually costs just as much as a bad domain name so you mine as well get your monies worth. Look for a domain name that will rank well in the search engines but you can also brand to make your own. Your domain name is how the online world will know you so make sure that you're making a good first impression and a lasting imprint on your visitors.