So… I actually had a blog before this one…
Yep. It was moodaxis.com.
After a few weeks of blogging on this domain, I felt deflated. I decided that it just didn’t accurately represent what I had in mind for my brand and I ditched it…
I even left ALL the posts I had written behind! I knew that I couldn’t simply copy and paste them onto my new domain as Google would consider that copy theft and my domain would be penalized.
So I left them behind.
Thousands of words lost. Never to be read again.
Pretty nuts, I know! But THAT’s how much I wanted, and needed, the right domain name for my blog.
If you’re into the law of attraction, I’ll tell you how I manifested the ideal domain name for my blog by leaving it up to the universe to lead me to the right domain name.
I couldn’t believe I was back to the proverbial drawing board after two months of blogging.
Honestly, at this point, it felt like I was trying to jump-start a dead car. I was having serious doubts about blogging as a source of income and in fact, I almost packed it all in.
There just seemed way too much to get my head around and if I couldn’t even come up with a good blog name to get going, what would be the point of investing even more time into it?
I sat down and visualized having the perfect domain name as described here.
After finally coming up with basicallywonderful.com, I KNEW that I had the right domain name for the job.
It was general enough to comfortably blog about a wide variety of stuff, it sounded fun and upbeat, it was only two simple words long, easy to read in the browser address bar, and super easy to recall.
I found that due to this newfound confidence, my productivity went through the roof. I started writing more and more (up to three posts a day at one point!), more post ideas would fly to me, and my desire to grow the blog boomed.
John Schnobrich / Unsplash
Now, having said ALL of that…
I’m going to completely contradict myself by making the following statement:
Virtually any domain name can work well for your blog.
As long as:
- You’re happy with it (this is obviously super important)
2. It’s clean, meaning that it hasn’t been blacklisted by Google in the past. This could happen if the domain was used by spammers for activities such as spreading malware, or for selling counterfeit goods. It could also happen to someone who registered the domain and who used outdated black hat techniques to increase their rankings.
Note: Check your domain is clean with websites like DomainTools before buying as a clean domain is required if you want your blog pages to rank on Google… or avoid the spammer coming back and hacking your account to retrieve their expired domain. That happened to me once and it was crazy…
Now, I say this because there are SO many successful blogs out there with domain names that violate a lot of what bloggers and web developers usually recommend when it comes to picking a great domain name.
For example, people often say to keep a domain name short, yet there are hugely successful blogs with very long domain names and multiple words such as justagirlandherblog.com which looks hard to make out in the address bar, consists of 6 words, takes a while to type into the address bar if you’re revisiting the site, and is arguably pretty tricky to recall.
Yet in December of 2016 (the last month they published an income report), they made $41,700…
Now, if you’d like to take some other factors into consideration when picking a great domain name for your blog, read on… BUT please remember that ultimately, if you meet the above couple of guidelines, you should absolutely still be good to go!
Avoid Multiple Hyphens and Numbers
Yes, refinery29.com has numbers in it but they’ve been around for ages; they’ve long established themselves as a quality website 🙂
The reason why you don’t see many domain names with hyphens or numbers in them is because Google tends to view domain names with numbers and hyphens as potential spamming domains because they’re so incredibly easy and fast to find and register.
For example, you can pick a word – any single word, and put a 2-3 digit number before or after it and you can almost guarantee that the .com will be available to buy. Spammers aren’t interested in investing any time or effort into picking great domain names, they just want to get going and do their thing, so having lots of numbers and hyphens in your domain name may cause your blog to be flagged by Google as potential spam.
Go for a .Com or .Net and Avoid Country-Specific Tlds
The only other thing I would recommend, although this is by no means mandatory for a successful blog, is to go with one of the main TLDs (.com, .net, .org) and not a country-specific domain name, including a .co (which is actually the country TLD for Columbia).
Then again, createandgo.co is an incredibly successful blog. So again, it depends on what name you like and what’s available for purchase.
It does also depend on where you’d like to get traffic from. And this is a pretty vital point to take into consideration when picking your domain name.
Country specific TLDs may not rank as well on Google as the main TLDs in America BUT, if you’re aiming for most of your traffic to come from Pinterest, your domain name won’t matter that much.
Although saying that, do bear in mind that some readers may be turned off by country-specific domain names. My cousin, for example, when finding blog posts via Pinterest, quickly closes any blogs she loads that end in any country-specific TLD.
Essentially, if it isn’t a .com or .net, she isn’t interested.
I asked her why this was exactly and she said that it didn’t feel as relevant to her as an American blog. I suspect other people might feel the same way, and that’s fine, but just brace yourself for that sort of user behavior if you decide to go for a country-specific domain name.
Additionally, clicking onto and then swiftly off a website also increases the website’s bounce rate, which isn’t good. You definitely want to encourage people to stay on your blog a while, read a good chunk of your post and then ideally, click onto another article.
This will decrease your bounce rate, which is something Google takes into consideration when ranking sites, and you’ll receive more ad impressions and possibly clicks, which will mean more income for you (if of course, you choose to add ads to your blog).
So looking at the above, it may be worthwhile going for a .com or .net domain name 😀
Keep It Short, Sweet and Memorable
Kaboompics / Raw Pixel
Two or three short words that somehow relate to your niche would be ideal. That way, it’ll be memorable, punchy and easy to type into the browser address bar to revisit.
Consider Using Your Own Name
If you get REALLY stuck for a domain name, think about using your own name!
It worked great for Sarah Titus!
You can also blog under a pseudonym if you’re not okay with revealing your identity (which is totally understandable).
You also have the option of taking your real first name and then add a word before or after it, such as annaeverywhere.com
There are tonnes of companies that are named after their owners! Think about Cadbury’s chocolate or Johnson’s and Johnson’s toiletries and how tremendously successful they are!
Include Keywords from Your Niche
If your blog is very niche, you can include the main keyword you’d like to rank for such as succulentsandsunshine.com. It has succulents in it and that is likely to help it to rank for various search terms which include succulents.
Making it keyword rich will also instantly let people know what your site is about.
Create a Domain Name from a List of Words You Love
Jen Theodore / Unsplash
Working with words that you really like and find really engaging, pleasant and go some way to offering insight about what your blog represents might help you to put together a domain name.
Visualize Already Having the Perfect Domain Name
If you believe in the law of attraction, which I blog about, you’ll know that resistance can keep things from happening. And so this brings me onto my next point…
I manifested my domain name by imagining that I already had the perfect domain name for my blog.
After almost two months of deliberation and even going through two previous domain names as above, basicallywonderful.com came about after just a couple of days after that visualization!
Use a Domain Name Generator
I haven’t personally found these to be that great in the past. I’ve used them many times for clients when I was a web designer and never came up with anything great, but they’re free and totally worth a shot. Here are just a couple to get you going:
Don’t Give up and Don’t Stress
I know, I know. It’s hard not to get stressed out when you just want to finally find that perfect domain name and just get going!
It’s even more frustrating if you’re setting a blog to start making a little extra income that’s desperately needed…
And it can seem like everyone else in the blogosphere is doing so incredibly well and you’ve barely made a start but know that ALL of those people started exactly where you are right now.
But know that you WILL eventually find the right domain name and once you do, you’ll be well onto your exciting blogging journey.
Much love ❤️