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Domain Name Do's and Don'ts

By Candice Pardue
Posted Friday, November 19, 2004

For newcomers to the Web, I'll give a brief definition of a domain name.

Your domain name is the same as "(". It's also known as your URL or Website Address.

For example, ( is my site's domain name or my web address.

The domain name must be registered and approved before you can call it your own. The reason it works this way is because two websites having the same domain name cannot reside online at the same time. If someone types in (, he/she will go to my website and no one else's.

Registering your domain name and awaiting approval gives the registration company opportunity to check with every other company around the world to be sure no one else has already applied for your domain name "first."

It normally takes 2 to 3 days to receive confirmation of your domain name.

If you haven't registered your own domain name yet, please take the following tips into consideration before doing so.

Your domain name can affect the number of repeat visitors to your website.

Here's How:

1. Visitors will only remember your domain name for a future visit if it is easy to remember.

Which of the two domain names below would you more likely remember?

( or (

Probably the first one. The shorter the better. Visitors will see the domain name, remember it, and hopefully visit again in the future if the domain name is simple and to the point.

2. Your domain name should be directly related to your offer or information available at your website.

For example, ( is directly related to web design training. In monitoring our website statistics, I've noticed that we have many visitors each month who arrive at our website by simply typing in the domain name instead of arriving through search engines, other links, etc. Of course, this was not so at the start. But, as visitors began coming, they began memorizing the domain name and repeating their visits in this fashion.

3. If possible, use a generic name that people might would type in without ever hearing about you.

For example, ( is very generic, and I'm sure many people simply type this name in to see what's available in the web design field.

Other "very" generic names I can think of are:


Although many of the most popular generic names are reserved, it would be wise to search for the most generic name possible in your field that's easy to remember.

The three above tips will help you choose a domain name that will tremendously increase your repeat visitor rate. A website must first be designed, and then built upon a solid visitor flow. A simple, easy-to-remember domain name is a great start to reaching your goal!

About the Author
Article written by Candice Pardue, editor of Web Design Weekly. Subscribe today to receive free web design updates, resources and more by email. Go here to subscribe ... (


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