Search Engine Optimization (SEO) 101: Part 2 - Domains

Posted by
in SEO on 03 January 2013, 17:39
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) 101: Part 2 - Domains
Please read Search Engine Optimization (SEO) 101: Part 1 before proceeding, if you have not done so.

Domain Names

Even though Webpin provides a free sub-domain, if you are serious about ranking in Google, you should get a Top Level Domain (TLD), such as a .com , .mx , .es , etc. You can search for domain availability right here at Webpin.

Its easy to think that all the good domain names are taken. Sure, the easy and obvious ones have been snatched up years ago, but that doesn't mean there still aren't any good .com domain names left that are perfect for your business or blog.

The starting point, however, is to realize that you do need own your own domain name. Most businesses have figured this out already but some businesses and bloggers haven't. That's because it takes a bit of work and some small fees. 

If your blog is nothing more than a personal diary then the free Webpin subdomain may be all you need. But if you're looking to build an audience, sell a few products, or make a name for yourself, getting your own Top Level Domain name is the way to go.

Whether you're a business, a blogger, or something in between, selecting your domain name can be a trying process. Those of you who have searched for the "perfect" domain name know what I mean. You go through dozens, if not hundreds of different options looking for just the right one. When looking for domain names for your business or blog, here are a few guidelines:

Keep it short

Short domains are the hardest to find. But that's not to say you can't find just the right short domain name for you. You don't need something as short as three letters, but I wouldn't go much longer than three words. Your own mileage may vary but keep in mind, the longer the domain name is the more difficult it will be to remember when being passed along via word of mouth or in casual conversation. 

Make it memorable

You want your domain name to be something that can be remembered easily. When looking to get a short domain name many people try to cut corners with abbreviations or clever spellings. The problem with that is clever spellings have to be explained when passing the site on verbally.

Imagine if you were reading right now instead of Or maybe you shop at instead of Or perhaps you are browsing Now imagine telling someone about it. Each would require a little extra effort that most people won't take.And even when it is, its easily forgotten or the hearer is confused. Not a great way to grow your business or blog.

There are some instances where clever can be memorable and easy. is a good example. Notice though the simplicity of this, but if they had called it it would have been a different matter entirely.

Use keywords if possible

Without going too long and still keeping your domain name memorable, try to find one that uses your primary keywords. It's not always easy to find domains with your primary keywords still available, but keep looking. Just avoid the temptation to load up your domain with all kinds of keywords. could have just as easily been Not quite the same impact. Do you sacrifice keywords for simplicity? In most cases yes.

When to use local (country specific) TLDs (top-level domains)

In my opinion, having a local TLD is the best one way of showing Google that a website is intended for a specific geographical target. 

So if you want to set up a Mexican website, for example, you’re likely to find it quicker/easier to get this indexed and ranking in Google if it’s located on a .mx domain. Also, when thinking of the website as a brand, a local domain is likely to be more recognisable to that country’s audience. So you may see an increase in click through rate from searchers and possibly an impact on conversion rate too! So those are additional considerations beyond achieving rankings.