So, you have decided to start a website or a blog. Congratulations! The first question that you will need to answer now is what the address of this website is going to be. Let’s decide what’s best for you!
How to select a perfect domain name for your personal webpage or blog
- choose domain name that serves your website’s purpose best;
- consider using your name, industry, or occupation as a part of it;
- explore different top level domains (TLDs) or domain zones to find the best fit;
- make your domain name easy to read, spell, and share;
- proceed to registration with a trusted provider;
- use domain name as a part of website’s title as well;
- share a link to your website across all of your online profiles.
Why Domain Name is Important
Domain name is a unique identification string that defines a website. The address that you type into the search box when trying to access any website — that’s domain name.
Your visitors will appreciate if this name is easy to remember and type in, so a rule of thumb here is to use something really similar to your blog name and / or purpose.
- Website’s title: John’s Blog About Dogs
- Domain name: mypersonalblog.com
- Website’s title: Moreen’s Johns Personal Blog
- Domain name: moreenjohns.com
Ideas to consider when picking a domain name for your blog or a personal webpage
When using your name is the best choice
People often ask me if they should use their names in website addresses, or better try to make it keyword-reach, and I always say: think about purpose of your website.
If it is a personal space where you plan to share some information about yourself and your career along with links to your social media profiles, publications, and awards, then your best choice would be a combination of:
Hint: Domain zone or top-level domain, which is .com in the examples I listed above, doesn’t have to be .com only. More on that in a minute.
Even if it is a blog about some particular topic that you want to be strongly associated with, it’s a wise choice to go with your name as a domain name, or a combination of your name and topic.
A combination of your name and industry maybe?
And that was another question about domain names that are best to use for personal marketing that landed in our Inbox on Facebook (don’t forget to send yours wherever it’s convenient for you, we also have LinkedIn and email firstname.lastname@example.org!)
So, Nina asks if she should include the industry she is working in in the domain name. Let’s say it’s ninafitness dot com
I think it’s a good alternative if your firstnamalastname domain is already taken, or if you expect people to google you mostly using your first name only. Fitness can be exactly the industry where it works!
Alternatively, you can use your industry’s TLD (top level domain). There are literally hundreds of them along with good old .com for you to choose from, .fitness or .dance among them.
As to other domain zone / TLD options, you can consider:
- your regional TLD, such as .ca for Canada;
- occupational TLDs, such as .author, .doctor;
- topic related TLDs, such as .coffee, .golf;
- and as mentioned, industry TLDs, such as .marketing, financial.
Find a full comprehensive list of TLDs and their types on Wikipedia: List of Internet top-level domains.
Using your company or brand name
If the purpose of your personal website is to promote your business, and you run it under its own brand name, not your personal name, in some cases it might be appropriate to use this name as domain name, but you better think twice about visitors’ expectations: it’s more natural to expect to find a corporate website under the brand name, not its owner’s personal blog.
Speaking of TLDs again, if you go with your business name for a domain name, the best domain zones to use are: .com, .net, your country / region TLDs.
So, you have a lot of options to choose from, but always think about your website purpose and visitors’ expectations first!
Some no-no’s for your domain name selection
There are some restrictions as to the symbols you can use for domain name creation. Symbols allowed are as follows:
- letters (Latin or some other alphabetic systems such as Cyrillic);
- hyphens (not allowed at the beginning or end of a domain name).
Also, I would recommend you being conservative with your domain name spelling.
- Try to keep it simple and easy to read and type after hearing it just once.
- Avoid using more than two similar symbols in a row (“booze” is okay, but “booooozzzzze” would be difficult to reproduce).
- Consider if you really need to use hyphens because it makes a domain name harder to spell.
- Avoid substituting letters with numbers (“logos” is okay, but “1og0s” is not, though domain registration tool will probably accept it.)
How to register a domain name for your blog
Now you know a lot about domain names and you are ready to register one for yourself! In order to do so, you will be provided with a convenient tool if you are using WordPress:
What are the next steps?
- Think about an eye catching website title and include your domain name there as well!
- Read further to decide whether you want to start a blog on your newly created domain, or go with a personal webpage.
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