6 mistakes to avoid when registering a domain name

Written on 21 December, 2015 by Verity Meagher
Categories DomainsTags domain nameonline businessonline marketing

With more and more websites being registered every day, it's difficult to secure the perfect domain name.

Trying to get around this problem can lead to creative solutions and unforeseen mistakes. Here are our top tips on how to avoid choosing the wrong domain.

1. Limiting your TLD options

While it's best for Australian businesses to register the .com.au TLD for their domain, a common mistake is not considering registering the same domain across multiple TLDs. In later years, when you're ready to expand your business, the relevant TLD may have already been snapped up. It’s also an important consideration for brand protection purposes. Capturing the .com – and perhaps .co.nz and .co.uk – versions of your domain from the start can save headaches down the track.

2. Not registering typo domains

As well as registering different TLD versions of your site, it's a good idea to get common typo versions as well. If your business name is hard to spell, if there’s a different US spelling or if people aren't sure whether or not there's an s on the end, it's a good idea to register these alternative spellings and use a 301 redirect to push that traffic to your actual site so you don’t lose it altogether.

3. Combining words

One of the most common ways to make a mistake with your website is to have multiple words combine to create a phrase you didn't intend. Business such as partnerstalking.com.au and childrenswear.co.uk have all discovered this problem. Before registering your domain, take some time to think about how it could be read, and send it to a few friends or colleagues to double-check.

4. Letting someone else register the domain

If you've never gone through the process before, you might think that registering a domain is a daunting prospect. However, by letting someone else (such as a web design agency) register your domain, ultimately they own that URL. Best practice is to register the domain yourself – that way, everything is under your control.

5. Not renewing the domain name

When you buy a domain name, you're really just renting it for a specified period of time. What this means is that you need to remember to renew your lease. If you forget, there's the chance that a competitor could register your domain once it goes back on the market.

6. Leaving yourself open to spam

When you register a domain, your contact details are made publicly available through a searchable Whois database. To minimise spam and telemarketing calls, consider investing in a domain privacy service. This means your domain contact details remain private and hidden from public view.

Getting the right domain can take a bit of effort, but once you find one that ticks all the boxes it can be a huge boost to your online presence.

Find out more about Australia’s most recognisable domain names