Keywords in Your Domain Name

Use Keywords in Your Domain Name?

There is a popular view that including keywords in your domain name can improve your position in search engine results for that keyword.  Is that true?  Should you build your domain name out of keywords used by people who want to find you, or should you base it on your company name?  This issue tackles these questions, gives you recommendations, and also points you toward some free tools to help you get it done.

Domain Keywords and Search Engine Results Position

I can tell you based on repeated personal experience that today, keywords in the domain name can definitely improve your position in Google search engine results.  In fact, for a small business, I believe that the quickest path to page one of Google results for a given query keywords is by incorporating that keyword into the start of the domain name.

The Question
Now, given the benefit of incorporating keywords into the domain name, should you base your domain name on popular keywords, or should you base it on your company name?  If you are British Petroleum, and you’ve spend millions popularizing your trademark, BP, then there’s little questio for you.  You’ll use BP and get your search engine results position some other way.  But for a small business, your trade name may never get very popular; so do you want to go after the name or keywords?  A strategy that can give you the benefits of both is to name your company based on important keywords.  Such as the company “Web Marketing Advantage”, for example!
Being in your business, perhaps with many years of experience, you may believe that you know the keywords that searchers will use to find you.  But bear in mind that you’re inside the business, and when talking with your peers and your most sophisticated customers you need to make fine distinctions about your offerings that prospects who are searching for you may not make.  So your prospects may use different terms entirely.
The good news is that Google makes a free tool available to find keywords that are actually used by searchers, the Adwords Query Tool.  Use it to find terms that are popularly used.
Once you have the terms you want to incorporate, the job of building domain names from combinations of these terms and searching to see which are available can be burdensome.  So there’s more good news–there’s another free tool available, BustaName, that you can use to put together combinations of terms and find out which domains are available.  And even purchase a domain name.
The Bottom Line
Consider a keyword-based domain name.  Or even a keyword-based company name!
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