Your domain name is your app’s unique website address, but it’s also much more than that. It helps to set your product apart and define your professionalism. For these reasons, your domain name is important, and choosing one requires careful thought. Here’s what you need to know to pick a domain name for your app that’s a strategic one.
Tips for Choosing a Good App Domain Name
Since your domain name plays such a central role, take care to find one that will help move your business forward. Here are four tips that will help guide you.
1. Select a Memorable and Unique Name
Your domain name will be based on the name of your app. While it may include additional words (TheNameApp.com, for example), you’ll want to stick a branded domain name that’s short and easy to remember. The domain should also be unique, not easily confused with another popular product.
2. Make It Easy to Type
Your domain name should be easy to spell and easy to understand when people hear it said. If your prospective users can’t figure out what to type in the address bar of their browsers, then you’ll miss out on potential customers. Also, avoid dashes in the domain name if possible, since the default of most domains is dash-free.
3. Keep It Simple
The shorter the domain name, the better, since many people will be typing your domain address into their smartphones. You don’t want to dissuade anyone from visiting your site. Steer clear of long or complex words.
4. Choose a .com Name if Possible
There are many options for your website’s domain name extension, including .net, .org, or country codes like .au (Australia) and .ca (Canada). If possible, choose a .com extension, since it’s the most popular and easiest to remember.
Tips for What Not to Do When Choosing a Domain Name
On the flip side, there are a few things you should avoid when choosing a domain name in order to prevent confusion. Be sure NOT to:
- Use a name similar to another site
- Pluralize an existing site name
- Include numbers (unless your brand uses numbers)
- Use hyphens or other punctuation
- Include misspellings or wordplay
4 Steps for Picking a Domain Name for Your App
Want an easy, step-by-step process to help you come up with a domain name? Here’s the process we recommend.
Start with the name of your app as the foundation, and then begin brainstorming. If the .com version of your brand name isn’t available, are there short words (like “the,” “app,” or “online” that you could add to your brand name to land a .com address? Consider various word order arrangements as well. Write down all your ideas. If you’re stuck, domain name generators like InstantDomainSearch can help. Enter the primary word you’d like to include in your domain name to see alternatives that are available.
2. Solicit Feedback
Once you find a few options that resonate with you, gather opinions from people who fit your target user profile. Is the name clear to them? Is it memorable? Will there be any potential for confusion?
3. Check Availability
Next, take a look to see if the options you’ve chosen for your domain are available. First, search a domain name provider like GoDaddy, which will tell you if the domain is already owned by someone. If the domain isn’t available, search the domain in Google to see what comes up. Sometimes, hosting companies or other third parties will purchase a domain for resale, so you may have the option to purchase your preferred domain at an increased cost. (These domains are called premium domains, and we’ll share more on this option in our next post).
4. Make Sure It’s Not Restricted
Once you’ve verified that you can purchase a domain, you should also check that there are no trademarks or copyrights restricting use of the name. You can search the United States Patent and Trademark Office. This step will help you avoid cease-and-desist notifications (and headaches!) in the future.
Ideally, your domain name won’t change, so be sure to choose a name that’s easy to remember, easy to type, unique, and unrestricted. Choosing a strategic domain name now will prevent confusion and save you money down the road.
Want to talk about your app idea? Get in touch, and we’ll schedule a call.