I was recently reminded that I had failed to write the second part of my techniques for naming my new websites. If anyone was paying attention and waiting for it; my apologies and I hope what I have to say won’t ruin any cool names you’ve come up with since then. If you weren’t waiting for it, you’re gonna get it anyway. 😀
Once I have my list (as per my earlier post What Do I Call It?), I start looking at the brandability of the name. Hmm, brandability, does not appear to be in my dictionary; but, I’m gonna use it anyway.
What do I mean by brandability?
Brandability encompasses a number of things. Rather than write a long-winded explanation, I think I’ll just leave you with a few questions to ask yourself and your friends and family when you get your name list narrowed down.
- Is your name pronounceable?
- If people can’t speak your new domain name, they will be hard-pressed to share it with others.
- Is it easily spelled?
- If people can’t spell your name, they can’t tell others where to find your site and they may end up on your competitor’s site.
- Does it have one or more sets of double letters?
- Double letters are tricky if they are at the end of one word and the beginning of another. Consider how those double letters look in print and whether or not people may forget one of the pair when typing your new domain name into their address bar.
- Are you using too fancy of a word?
- We all have different vocabulary skills. That really cool word you want to use may be totally incomprehensible to others. And if you think your site will attract visitors for whom English is not their first language, they will not likely be familiar with the word either.
- Is your name too cute?
- Del.icio.us is perhaps one of the largest sites on the Internet. I still have to think about where the periods go. Do you feel you have the money to promote your site enough to educate your visitors how to break up a word your way?
- Are you using numbers for words?
- This is one way to get a good name but it also a good way to give the person who owns the domain with the numbers spelled out free traffic.
- Are you using a trademark?
- Be careful when using a trademarked name as part of your new domain name. Some companies are very protective of their brands and will sue webmasters who include their trademarked company name or slogan in a domain name.
- When your name is pushed together like most domain names are, have you created something unexpected?
- Look carefully and what do you see; ThePenIsMighty.com, WhoRepresents.com, TherapistFinder.com, GoTahoe.com, ViaGrafix.com (the company had to change it’s name after the famous pill was launched). There are litterally hundreds of these, both real and imagined.
That’s not all of the things you need to look for but it should get you thinking more critically about your choices.
Anyone else wanna share?