How to Choose a Domain Name

Wondering how to choose a domain name — or why you might want to buy one in the first place? Like a pin on a map, a domain name is what people and search engines use to find your website, brand or store online. And it can have a huge impact on how much traffic visits your site.

It's easy to find and use a domain name through Weebly. Your domain connects directly to your website and can be managed from a single place. Plus, you can get your new domain free for 1 year with select plans.

Once you select a domain, you can get online instantly, have full ownership of the name and opt for private registration to protect your site from hackers and scams. You can also register your domain name for multiple years, which can help boost your site ranking with Google by signaling that your business is here to stay.

A professional, customized domain name helps your site or store stand out from the crowd, represents what your business is about and improves brand recognition — so choose carefully. If you want to learn more about how to choose a domain name for your online site or store, consider the following tips:

1. Keep it short: When it comes to domain names, less is more, writes Rand Fishkin, co-founder of the marketing analytics software company, Moz. It turns out that humans find it easier to remember names that are simple to pronounce and shorter to type, he adds. That includes avoiding numbers, hyphens, underscores and other symbols that make domain names harder to say and remember. Skinny Man Gourmet Jerky, for example, chose an abbreviated domain name — skinnymanjerky.com — that makes it easier for customers to access its site.

2. Be Intuitive: Your domain name should clearly convey what your site or store offers to customers, Fishkin says. If people can instinctively guess what your business is about by reading your domain name, you're off to a good start. That intuitive connection with your business will also help people remember and share your site or store with others once they leave. Straightforward domain names such as Heather Knight's elementclaystudio.com, for example, make it easy for would-be customers to infer that she's a ceramic artist.

3. Embrace Change: It's okay to make adjustments to your domain name if the exact match isn't available. One option is to add a prefix or suffix to your domain name, such as TheGardenShop.com or GardenShopNY.com to indicate your location. Don't be afraid to get creative! You can also choose a different TLD extension for your domain name such as .net or .org — or even localize your domain with a country specific extension like .ca (Canada), .de (Germany) or.eu (European Union). Gracie's gowns, which provides homemade hospital gowns for children, chose the .org extension for graciesgowns.org to indicate its nonprofit status.

If you want to know how to choose a domain name in Weebly, simply go to the Domains tab via your Dashboard and type in the name you want to use in the search box to see what names are available. You may want to consider buying multiple versions of your domain name to protect your brand from competitors or to direct more overall traffic to your site.

A domain name is an important locator that helps customers discover your online site, brand or business — and remember how to find you again. We're proud to offer a single platform that makes it easy to find and manage domains directly alongside your website.

Ready to get online? Get your domain for free the first year with the Pre-Launch Membership: