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Are you starting a new blog but not sure how to come up with the right domain name?
Then this detailed article is just for you.
As you know, I currently run a number of sites and have run many others in the past. Choosing the blog name and domain is always my favorite activity.
At the start of my blogging career, I used to sweat over it for hours. But with time, I’ve developed a process through which I come up with catchy blog names in a matter of minutes.
I’ll share the full process with you in this article.
Choosing A Blog Name – Why Is It Important
Seriously, why should you even care about choosing a blog name? Just choose anything from the top of your mind, right?
If you consider blogging a long-term and serious business and want to make millions from it, you must choose a blog name carefully.
It’s the foundation of your blog’s branding strategy and will play a crucial role in determining whether people take your content seriously or not.
I’ve personally seen that even if the content of a site is great, people sometimes avoid sharing it and don’t take it seriously because of an awkward or plain spammy name.
On the contrary, an attractive blog name immediately makes an impression convinces the users to click on it in the search results.
For example, which site would you visit if you see them Google Search results against the keyword “weight loss tips”
Site 1: AmazingWeightLossTipsForWomen.com
Site 2: FitnessDiva.com
The second one, right? Because it sounds more legitimate.
That’s called the Halo effect, human psychological behavior in which we tend to make an overall judgment about someone or something based on just one of their traits.
For example, it’s a known fact that physically attractive people are considered more intelligent as well, although there’s no real connection between the two.
Similarly, when people see a poorly worded or irrelevant domain name, they mostly ignore it even if it has better quality content than its competitors.
In short, you need to take this part seriously.
How To Choose A Blog Name – 7 Important Things To Consider
There are certain things you need to remember when choosing a domain and brand name for your blog. Every point in the list below is important, so read carefully.
1. Your Blog Name Should Be Relevant To Your Niche
The perfect domain and brand name for your blog needs to be relevant to your niche. It should immediately remind people of your topic and give them a general idea of what it is about.
This sounds pretty basic but it’s amazing how many bloggers get this part wrong only becuase they’re more focused on finding keyword-rich domain names that include high traffic search keywords.
If you’re making that mistake, I’ve got news for you
Keyword-rich domain names are dead in 2020 and can get you penalized if you overdo it. So instead of wasting your time these outdated techniques, come up with a relevant brand name that helps people identify you.
For example, if your blog is about veganism and its benefits, brand names like VeganJoe, PainlessFood, GreenMeals do a great job since you can immediately guess what they’re about.
2. Resonates With Your Target Audience
This point is very important.
You need to consider your target audience, their language preferences, and their style when choosing a brand name.
For example, if you’re starting a blog that targets boomers, you’d want to avoid words lovely fancy words or terms that they might not be familiar with. Similarly, you’d want to avoid words that might offend your target audience.
Ideally, use words that are a part of your audience’s daily conversations. For example, I aw a blog about cryptocurrencies name “HodlKing”. As someone who knows nothing about cryptocurrencies, I thought this was a misspelled word.
But apparently Hodl is a pretty common term used by Bitcoin investors. So the blog owner did a good job of using the words that their audience is familiar with.
3. Sounds Like A Brand Name
Your brand name should actually sound like one.
Even if your brand name is relevant and uses the language of your target audience, it won’t work well if it reads like a normal phrase or a general terminology.
For example, if a blog about sleep disorders is named MySleepingProblems.com, it doesn’t sound like a brand name. In comparison, names like HappyDreaming or DreamingOfSleep are much more brandable and also address the core topic of the site.
Think of how someone interviewing you in a podcast or a blog post would say your brand name.
“Hey today we have Joe from MySleepingProblems.com” – Very generic, doesn’t sound great.
“Joe runs the site DreamingOfSleep.com” – Much better.
4. Is Aligned With Your Blog’s Voice And Writing Style
What’s your blogging voice and tone going to sound like?
Is it very formal and follows all the writing conventions or more informal conversational, cheeky, and not very specific about writing rules?
Your writing voice has a major say in your brand name becuase it is really an extension of your brand. You can’t name a formal corporate blog CopywritingBitch (trust me, I’ve seen this domain).
There’s a really good informal blog about freelance writing called CreativeRevolt, perfect naming in my opinion. There’s another one called TheWriteLife which is more formal and targeted towards journalists.
Both the names are tailored for different audiences and cover the same niche in completely different styles.
5. It’s Short, Easy And Memorable
The best brand names are short, easy to pronounce and spell, and memorable.
Now considering what I’ve just said, do you think these domain names fit the description?
They’re all pretty bad domain names becuase they’re either too difficult to spell for most people or too long to remember.
Make sure your domain is made up of 2-3 words max., doesn’t use any hyphens, and isn’t confusing to spell.
Think of the most popular brand names in the world like CocaCola, McDonald’s, Pepsi, Tesla, Amazon, all plain and simple words that are unique, easy to remember, and easy to spell.
6. Allows You To Expand Your Blog’s Scope
Choosing a relevant domain name that represents your niche is really important as I’ve already mentioned.
However, make sure your domain name still leaves room for you to branch out into other related niches. It shouldn’t be so specific that it binds you to a very narrow niche becuase this could ultimately hurt your earning potential.
For example, a domain name like GiftsForMyOldMan.com, for an affiliate site limits your scope to the very narrow niche. If you want to branch out into other closely related niches like gifts for moms, for siblings, for children, etc. you can’t do that with this domain.
So be specific but still leave some room for growth.
7. Doesn’t Confuse Your Audience
Okay, the last point is really important.
You need to make sure that your domain name does not confuse your audience and the search engines with some other product category or well-known brand.
Make sure the words you choose for your brand name have only one meaning. This might sound unnecessary but you don’t want thousands of Apple phone users storming your site if you’re ranking for the keyword “benefits of apple”.
How I Come Up With Brandable Blog Names
For me, choosing the perfect blog name takes hours. I do a lot more research naming my new blogs than the average internet marketer out there.
The idea that whatever words you choose now will have the potential to become a popular brand name is an exciting thought, isn’t it?
Mainly, it’s just personal preference. I approach new blogs with a business mentality. What do I want to name my new business? becomes a little more serious than what should I name my small side project?
But there are other things that factor into the equation of what makes a blog name good or bad, not just the name itself. I’m going to show you how I search, find, and analyze a domain name before registering it.
I’m going to take you through the exact steps that I personally take myself when I’m brainstorming for domain name ideas.
Let’s dive in…
Step 1: Find your 2 words
For me, the perfect blog name is a combination of two words. A niche-relevant word + a miscellaneous word.
The niche-relevant word will be something related to my niche. It doesn’t have to state the niche itself, but it has to be related.
For example, if my niche was web design, I would use something like “pixel” or “CSS”.
The second word is a miscellaneous word. It doesn’t need to have anything to do with my niche.
All I’m looking for is a cool, catchy word that blends well with my first word.
For example, if my first word was “pixel” then I could name it something like “Mega Pixel” or “Simple Pixel”.
As you can see (or hear), both words fit well together, and it sounds catchy.
What to avoid
Don’t make your blog name sound spammy. It’s not 2005 anymore. We’re not looking for exact match keywords for our blog name.
For example, a spammy blog name would be something like “Web Design Tutorials”. It’s not catchy at all, and it’s completely generic.
Simple Pixel is a much better choice than Web Design Tutorials. I’m sure most people will agree.
How I brainstorm
For me, the process will always start by making a list of 10 to 20 niche-relevant words.
Remember, these are words that are related to my main niche.
For example, if my target niche was personal finance, I would come up with the following list.
From there, I would make a list of miscellaneous words that I think would supplement my first word nicely.
Continuing with our example of personal finance, here are some words that I might come up with:
Step 2: Put together combinations you like
The next step is to start putting together words from your first list with your second list.
Keep a “Final Candidates” section in your notes and jot down all the ones you like best.
For example, some cool blog names would be:
- Wallet Nerd
- Frugal Mule
- Witty Penny
- Thrift Point
- Finance Edge
- Dollar Groove
It only took me a few minutes to put together these lists of words, but already I have a lot of good candidates.
All of these names are catchy, brandy, and make it obvious that I’m talking about finance.
Some helpful tools to help you come up with cool, brandable blog names
This is my favorite tool and the most useful in finding blog names that also have the .com domain names available.
I just throw in my seed keyword and it will show me an endless list of options.
If you build out a lot of blogs, you’ll probably find yourself coming back to this one.
Panabee is another good one. Rather than give you supplementary words to attach to your keyword like DomainNameBrain, it will show you cool ways of spelling out your keywords.
For example, while DomainNameBrain might bring back suggestions like dogalpha.com or dogtyrant.com, Panabee will suggest things like dogific.com or dogimatic.com.
A blue heart next to the name means it’s available. A broken red heart means it’s already been registered by somebody else.
This one is similar to DomainNameBrain, except that you’re given a little more control over your selection, and are presented with just a few rather than an unlimited stream.
You enter your keyword and can determine whether the supplementary word added goes at the beginning or end of your keyword, if it is a verb, adjective, or noun and how many letters it is.
There are actually a huge list of different tools just like this one. I’ve tried them all.
These 3 are the most helpful. I found other ones more difficult to use and they do weird things like bring back only results that are all already registered.
Step 3: Check for .COM availability
The next step is to go to a domain registrar’s website and check if the .COM domain extension is available for your chosen blog names.
Unless it’s a really great blog name that I NEED to have no matter what, I always go for the .COM.
I rarely ever go for the .NET and .ORG’s.
There also seems to be a lot of newer TLD’s like .community or .ninja.
Stay away from them. Few people even recognize those as URL’s.
I like to stay with the most universally known domain extension, .COM and I would advise most people to do the same.
Likely to be competitive for your brand
Another reason I like to go with the .COM is that, usually if the .COM is available it means the .NET and .ORG is available too.
If the .COM is taken, but the .NET or .ORG is available, searching for the domain by name on Google might bring back results full of the .COM site.
That’s just unnecessary competition.
Step 4: Check Google
If you see that the domain is available in the extension that you want, then there’s one more step before you register it.
You need to check Google to see if there’s already a company out there with that name that’s eating up the search results.
This is a very important step. If there’s already a giant company out there with a huge authority, you’ll have a tough time ranking for your own brand name.
For example, here’s a search I did for “Wallet Nerd”.
As you can see, there’s already a huge company called Nerd Wallet that’s eating up the search results. Every single result is pointing to their brand.
In this case, even if the .COM were available, I would choose a different name. It’s tough enough to drive traffic from major keywords. You don’t want to have to compete so hard just to rank for your own name.
What you want to see are results like this:
There are no brands, companies, or other sites eating up this search result. If we build a new blog with this name, we can rank for the brand keyword easily.
Step 5: Check if it was ever registered before
Now before you go off and register it, there’s one last quick step.
Check to make sure the domain has never been registered before. You can use this free tool here, and it only takes 30 seconds to run a check.
Hopefully you see something like this, telling you it’s never been registered.
If it does have a previously registered date, use archive.org to quickly check it wasn’t used for something spammy. You’ll also want to check the backlink profile of the site afterwards.
Some other things to consider
Once you’ve gone through all the steps above and things look good, it’s safe to register your domain.
But if you’re being extra cautious, you may want to check for some other things before making your final decision.
Is the Twitter profile available?
If Twitter is going to be a major social media channel you’re going to be using, you may want to check if the @YOURBLOGNAME is available first.
Not a huge deal if it isn’t since you can use variations, but it’s always nice to have the exact match.
Are other social media profiles available?
If you’re using any sort of social media, it’s always nice to have your exact blog name as your user name. It just sounds cool, and makes you look very official.
Here’s a website you can use to check profile name availability: https://www.namecheckr.com/.
Simply enter in your blog name and it’ll show you which ones are available for each platform, and which ones aren’t.
Final Step: Register!
Finding the perfect blog name takes a lot of time.
A lot of times, your preferred name will be taken.
But once you do finally find the right one that meets all our criteria, it’s a great feeling.
The last step is to go and register your domain name. You can use a domain registrar like NameCheap or if you don’t have web hosting yet, or you can register for both hosting and a domain with Bluehost.
If you register for hosting with Bluehost, they’ll give you a free domain name.
Make sure to register social profiles
Once you register the domain, go ahead and register your names on the major social media outlets. Even if you don’t have plans to use them yet, it’s still very important that you have them for the future.
I love coming up with domain names that are unique, creative, and meaningful. For me, it’s the most exciting stage of planning a new website.
As you learned, there is a lot that goes into finding the perfect blog name name. Finding the right words you like is just the beginning. From there, a lot of things have to be right in order for you to move forward with it.
If you can follow the steps outlined in this tutorial, you’ll be able to name your blog with something you’re completely satisfied and confident with.