The Creative’s Guide to Choosing a Domain Name for your Website in 2022
I bought a new domain name today. Yay!
Of course, it’s no big deal. But… it kind of is. I bought the domain name for a new project that I’m working on, which I’ll share more details about soon. In the process of starting it and choosing a domain name, I realised that it often goes a bit like this:
“Let’s start a new project!”
“Oh damn, we need a name”
“Oh damn, we have a name!”
“Oh damn, we need a website”
“Oh damn, we need a domain name”
“Oh damn, the .com domain is already taken”
“Oh damn, what do we do now?”
Sound familiar? To me it sure does. That’s why I thought: let me write a short and somewhat cheeky guide for my fellow creatives to choose a domain name that makes sense.
Here we go.
Step 1: Stop worrying about the .com domain 🙃
Yes, I know. This is unconventional advice.
Basically every blog anywhere tells you that .com is the most respected, the most well-known and generally: the most credible extension you can choose.
But let’s be honest: the success of your project or company is never, ever going to depend on whether you have the .com extension or not.
Still, yes. If you have the chance to choose a .com domain that looks and feels right to you: go for it.
Step 2: Start worrying about the story you’re telling 📽️
When I create a new concept, or a new brand, I think about the story that I want people to remember. I do that from the very first moment.
It’s something that I would call branding.
There’s actually a book about this, which I love, called Building a StoryBrand by David Miller. It takes inspiration from movies to help you build a brand that people will remember in the way you’d want them to. There’s a whole template you could fill out, but a nice start might be completing the exercise explained by the author in the first half of this video:
Now consider this: your domain name is part of the story you’re telling.
If you run a bookkeeping company that helps young entrepreneurs keep bookkeeping fun, bookkeeping.ninja might not be the worst idea in the world. Especially when ninjas are an integral part of your visual branding.
If, however, you run a bookkeeping company that, for a large part, advises retired people on how to invest their money in a safe and responsible way your story should convey something more responsible. So bookkeeping.org or .net might be better options here.
Your domain name is part of the story you’re telling.
In fact, it’s an opportunity to make your story more memorable, because every time you share your website with someone it could remind them of your story.
Step 3: Keep it short and simple 💋
What do you think works better? A website people can easily remember or a website they always have to Google or go through their notes for?
The first one, of course.
So when you have the chance, choose a website name that’s relatively short and easy to remember.
For example, I used to have a business called ‘The Bikery’ and I sold pancakes, so the website I chose was bikerypancakes.com. A similar story for krewcommunity.com. A good thing about these two examples is that it can help with your SEO to have a related keyword in your domain name.
I’d try to avoid much longer website names and combining more than three words. For example, worldofwomen.art is fine, but theworldofwomen.art just looks a little off and it would be harder to remember.
Bonus: Consider buying a Web3 domain as well ⭐
If you’re into NFTs (non-fungible tokens) and blockchain technology, you might have heard about Web3 domains.
These are domains are blockchain-based, which means a few things:
⭐ You don’t have to pay monthly or yearly fees: once you buy a Web3 domain, you own it forever
⭐ You can send or receive cryptocurrency using this domain name instead of a standard and hard-to-remember wallet address
⭐ They are extremely secure and censorship-resistant
They are also what many people believe to be the future of the internet, so it could potentially be a great investment.
In most cases, it should be an additional, however, because most browsers do not natively support Web3 domains yet – at least, not at the time I’m writing this.
But if your project has anything to do with cryptocurrencies at all, I would definitely consider buying your .zil, .crypto, .nft or .x (and a couple more) domain already.
In almost every other case, at least for new projects, I’d wait until your project has gained decent momentum to buy a Web3 domain name. But I do recommend keeping a close eye on the development of these domains, because they might soon become the norm.
Final thoughts 💭
I hope you enjoyed reading this short guide.
This is my view on choosing a good domain name in 2022, without feeling that you need to have that .com domain, no matter what it takes.
I’d say: just take these tips, focus on the story you want to tell and go with a domain name that feels right to you. If you feel like it’s right, others will too.
If you want to share your views on choosing domain names with me, please do so via my LinkedIn or by replying to my newsletter.
And as for the domain name I bought today: coming soon!