How to choose a blog name?
Choosing a blog name right is important when starting a blog. You need to put some thought into it. Once it becomes a brand, it is very difficult to change your blog’s name. Changing it later down the line has a lot of serious implications. It will affect your branding, search engine ranking and so the traffic to your blog. So it is important that you put some time into figuring out what your blog name will be.
You want to start a blog.
And now you are figuring out the name for your blog.
Do you think all the best domain names are taken?
There’s still plenty of ways to get creative and decide on a perfectly good domain name.
But remember we are not aiming for the perfect domain name, but an appropriate domain name.
Let’s look at a few things to consider when choosing your domain name.
1. Think long term
What is your intention with the blog?
Do you intend to make money with your blog? Or you just want to share your opinions on the internet?
Do you want to become famous and want a big fan following?
The name of your blog is going to become your brand eventually. In the long run, what do you want to do with your blog once it is fairly successful?
Some people want to sell their blogs to others and make money out of it that way. I know a few people who are into website building around specific niches and then sell on sites like flippa.com
2. Have the end goal in mind when choosing a blog name
For me, I like to make money, first and foremost, make a passive income out of this blog and teach.
I want a lot more free time on my hands, which directly affects the quality of my life.
It is good to think about why you are starting the blog and what the end goal is. Is it a means to an end? If so what is it that you are looking for?
Knowing this will calibrate you to what to expect out of your own work and will keep you motivated.
If you want to make money, then the calibration would be to be patient and consistent and not worrying about making a quick buck.
If you just want to share your opinions, the money does not matter, you can just publish whenever you want and share.
So if you want to sell the blog eventually, it won’t be appropriate to brand your blog with your name.
Or maybe you want to promote a product. Do you want to sell home appliances? It might not be a very good idea to include your name in the domain name, in that case either.
With that said, let’s look at a few different approaches and tools to help you choose the near perfect domain name for your blog.
3. Use your name
Many bloggers don’t know what they want to write about or are just experimenting with what they are writing.
Choosing your name is good in this case because that does not tie you into a very specific thing to write about.
You never know when your content will get saturated.
If you write about SEO, there is only so much you can write about SEO tools and keyword research. A few years or a few months you may find yourself running out of topics to write about.
Many top bloggers use their names in their domain name. Markmanson.net, jamesaltucher.com, tim.blog are good examples.
You can write about pretty much anything here, and then later invest more effort into areas that you enjoy writing about and/or give you the best results.
James Altucher says – “Use your own name. It’s the best way to spread the word about what you are, who you are about, and what you stand for. Look at Huffington Post. The most successful blog ever (whether one likes it or not- it started as a blog) was built on the back of one person’s name. Someone should make a libertarian version of the Huffington Post although lewrockwell.com is doing a good job.”
4. Do you want to write about something specific? Choose a name that relates to the content you intend to create.
Do you want to talk about a specific topic, like a breed of dogs, or a specific product or a service?
Are you ‘Niche-ing’ down?
Pick a name that relates to the topic that you are going to write about.
For example, a top personal financial blogger chooses makingsenseofcents.com as her domain name.
It is quite obvious that the blog is about finance.
And obviously, don’t pick a name like travelingjane.com and talk about gardening.
Look at these ones. Neverendingfootsteps.com talks about travels. Smartblogger.com talks about blogging.
These names are obvious in conveying what their content is going to be.
5. But I can’t decide whether to Niche or not niche?
As said above, niching will tie you down to a specific topic.
It may help you to gain readers quicker than a broader blog since some of your readers will be only interested in one section of your blog and not the others.
If you have a broader blog that covers travel and talks about your pet, readers who are only interested in stories about pets will soon get tired of the other content that comes in your newsletter and that will cause them to unsubscribe.
On the other hand, if they are interested in you as a person and your lifestyle, they won’t care about just one section of your life, they are more interested in you. They probably consider you as a trendsetter or someone they can copy.
When writing, a broader name, especially when using your own name, allows you to cover a lot of ground and keep your enthusiasm up. If you get bored of writing about one topic, you have the freedom to write about something else.
Both have pros and cons.
6. Stick to .com
There are many domain extensions out there these days.
These extensions are called TLDs.
Stick to .com always. Because even if there are others to choose from .com is very easy to remember.
I often mix up popular blogs with the wrong extension.
It is easy to remember the .com extension.
7. Use common language and avoid jargon – Be Joey
Just because you know in-depth about a subject and think it is common knowledge, the words you use might not make sense to another person.
It is better to stick to commonly spoken words.
I am sure you have met people who speak in jargon you find hard to follow. Like they speak at some other level.
Do you know the episode on the TV show Friends where Joey tries to write a letter for Monica using a thesaurus?
Ditch the thesaurus and just be Joey.
8. Think about synonyms of the word that you want to use (No jargon again)
Use a tool like a thesaurus to look up synonyms for the keywords you want to use.
Use an online thesaurus.
Go to thesaurus.com and put in the word, hit search.
Now pick from one of the words it provides or use it to come up with even better names.
9. Brainstorm keywords with google keyword planner
Use Google’s keyword planner to get more ideas for your domain name.
The keyword planner gives you popular keywords that people search for in google. And having one of these keywords in your domain name will improve your SEO ranking.
SEO is search engine optimization which simply means optimizing a website to rank better in Google’s search results.
10. Avoid these things in the name
- Hyphens make a domain name look ugly. And many times I have forgotten hyphens in some websites and ended up in totally different websites.
Savvytraveller over savvy-traveller
- Acronyms. They are hard to remember and not SEO friendly at all. No one is going to search for SML to get to Shoutmeloud blog. Even if they do, it is unlikely to come up in the results.
- Numbers. Again the same thing. They are not easy to remember.
- Do not use words that are frequently misspelled
11. Pick a name that is short and memorable
Allow two or three keywords to be in the domain name, and try different combinations of them.
Put them through the thesaurus.
Play with it, see if you can come up with fun names.
Use an online tool to do this to save time.
Your domain name must be easy to remember, easy to spell and easy to type.
Look at competitors’ names for inspiration.
Use the ubersuggest tool to see what keywords your competitors are using and then use these as a base to build on
12. Use domain name generator tools
There are also many online tools that you can use to generate a blog name.
Some of them are,
- Leandomainsearch. It will give you a lot of popular and meaningful words attached to your original search word.
13. Check the availability of the name in social media pages
Before choosing a name check if that name can be used to create social media accounts like facebook pages, Instagram and Twitter profiles.
See if they are taken already.
You will want to create these later to promote your blog, so it is best to stick with something that is available.
14. Don’t infringe any copyrights with your blog name
Do not include any trademarks in your domain name.
Use the USPTO website to search for any patent on the domain name that you have chosen.
15. Will it fit in your business card?
Choose a short and sweet domain name, if it is too long you wont be able to fit it in a business card.
The name of this blog did not fit into a business card design I really liked a while back.
16. Shoutmeloud phone test
I came across this one reading a similar article here
Basically don’t choose a name that you can’t tell someone over the phone. If you think there will be a lot of confusion in explaining it, spelling it out etc. Don’t choose it.
17. Finally, Don’t overthink
These are all guidelines, don’t overthink and get stuck.
Don’t try to get it perfectly right.
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