This is an email I got from a reader last week. Utterly devastated she had hit a roadblock, the domain name for the brand she had just created and spent months dreaming up was taken.

 

Well guess what, it happened to me when creating Bombshell Bay and never fear! There are a few creative hacks for those who cannot get the exact domain names they are after. Have a look at the following options to overcome domain anxiety

 

Look for alternative . extensions.

 

Whats a .extension? Great question, well you know how most websites use a .com to finish off their domain name, did you know there are a few other options that you can use.

 

Look for options like .net, .org (if appropriate) .biz or even .info. If you are a local business and dont sell to people based outside your country you could go for a local domain like .com.au .co.uk or .co.nz (or whatever the . extension is for your country)

 

Avoid over the top options like .guru, because… well just because.

 

Extend your name

 

Ok so I’m not actually asking you to change your brand name here, what
I’m suggesting is to add a word or two either before or after your brand name in order to get the .com you want.

 

For example you could add a “the” to before your brand name (www.thebrandname.com) or even a descriptor afterwards like I did with Bombshell Bay when www.bombshellbay.com wasnt available. I was able to securewww.bombshellbayswimwear.com  which might be mouthful but it works, 1 because I got the .com and 2. Because the URl contains the brand name and also swimwear which contextualises it for SEO! Double win!

I’ve seen other small fashion labels add “the label” to after the brand name so they can get the .com which is a bit of a trend that may pass.

 

One more thing… keep an eye out for when the domain registration will expire and the other owner might not renew, be quick and snap it up and keep it to use as a redirect.

 

Contact the owner and see if they want to sell it

 

If the domain has been bought by someone else and isn’t in use, they may be up for selling it to you. This can be easily done but what usually happens is that they will charge you a premium for the domain name. If you are willing to pay what they are asking then it might be worth investing in the domain name from the beginning. Make sure you go via all of the right channels to ensure you are the rightful owner.

 

Need to register a domain name for your online store?

 

Godaddy  is like the McDonalds of domains and hosting. They usually have pretty good offers if you are a new customer and sometimes offer domains from as little as .99!

 

Bluehost  offer a FREE domain when you sign up to certain hosting packages. Kaching!

 

Domain.com  As the name suggests offers domains, lotsa, lotsa domains.

 

When registering a domain to avoid letting it lapse, select “auto renew” to avoid losing your domain name from opportunistic domain squatters. Trust me, been there, done that, ain’t doing it again.