Godaddy is a domain name registration company (in)famous for running TV ads where women wear far less clothes at the end of the commercial than what they started with.  But for students of search engine optimization (SEO) techniques their domain search and registration page is an excellent free research tool. 

White Hat SEO Cowboys 

Howdy partner.  I hear you have a list of keywords and you want to research potential domain names that use them.  Well you just mosey on over to the Godaddy search page and type’em in.  Hopefully you’ll get an exact domain name match.  But if not, Godaddy will list domain names that are available.  Just that list of names is useful because it means someone paid money to register them.  Study that list for clues about what domains have value.  Godaddy has options for viewing what is available and those that aren’t.  

If none of your exact name matches are available you should always explore niche domain names.  Remember, you ALWAYS have at least one niche domain: it’s the place you live.  So if “pestcontrol” isn’t good and you live in Chicago then try “chicagopestcontrol”.  With Google getting more active in geolocation based search results you should always look for ways to use it.  More and more you’ll see Google search results list map locations on the first page of your search result.  If you are working for a client with a physical store location you want to be on that list of results.  It’s becoming something like an interactive Google yellow pages where one click takes you right to a map. 

If you start typing in long tailed keywords things get really interesting.  Besides the main list of available/unavailable domains you’ll see the “we also recommend” box to the right.  When that box starts showing results you get lists of prefixes and postfixes that go with your domain name search.  The variations that show up there are good to study but look at the next tab in that window, the “premium” tab.  Those are domain names that Godaddy will sell you and the prices are listed.  That is hard research data right there.  And yes, text can be copied and pasted from the “we also recommend” box for later study.  Just left mouse click slightly to the right of the “Select All” button and drag your way through the box to highlight everything.  Then you can right mouse click and copy the text for whatever tool you want. 

Black Hat SEO Cowboys 

I hear you are looking to bushwack research a competitor and see if they stupidly didn’t take Godaddy up on its offer to register six domains for the price of one.  Well belly up to the search page boys and type in your competitor’s .com domain.  Well looky there, it seems your competitor only registered and didn’t think to register  Oh look, that domain is for sale right there in that little window over there, now isn’t that something.  And you know most non-native English speakers are probably going to spell that wrong if they try to type it in.  Heck, most Amercian native English speakers can’t spell worth a damn.  I’ll bet you a lot of people will type in or some such.

What About SEO Ethics?

Sounds like a good name for a band (obscure Firesign Theater joke).  It should be noted that Godaddy itself encourages this.  Their ads are not subtle, check out I Own You. 

The idea for this article came from watching a CPC bidding war I wrote about in another InfoBarrel article.

Author’s note – no self referring links, no affiliate links and no animals were used in the writing of this article.