5 Essential things to know before you register a domain name

3 May, 2021

Your domain name is the URL/website address that your customers will use to find your website online. It’s something you want to get right first try!

These are the essential 5 things to know before you register a domain name – heed these and you’ll get the perfect domain… at the right price.

1. Keep it short – choose the right name

If nothing else from this page, remember this: your domain name should be short and sweet.

Shorter domains are more memorable and keep the full length of your URL’s down – which is a factor for search engine visibility. 

  • Try using an acronym for long business names
  • Identify your primary brand identifier. Eg, if your brand is called Jessie’s Catering Services, try register just  jessies.com.au. 
  • If none of those are available, you could also try 

2. Do it now. Don’t wait to secure your domain!

Even if you are months (years!) away from creating a website, register your domain now to lock it in. Otherwise, you might just miss out on the domain name you really need!

Why? Well, not only could someone else get in first, but domain flipping is still very much in practice. This is the practice of registering domains at their usual cost (less than $30/year) and then advertising them for sale at a huge markup (sometimes north of $10,000!). So do not hesitate. 

  • Register any domain you may want to develop later on. 
  • Register all related TLDs you can (eg, jessies.com AND jessies.com.au). Just imagine if you had the .com, but another business registered .com.au – how confusing for your customers!
*What happens if your perfect domain is up for sale by a domain flipper? Unfortunately, you can’t do much with these extortionists. You can contact the domain owner and see if they will negotiate, however you’re probably better off just finding another domain.

3. Get .com.au wherever possible

Domain names that end in .com.au have a slightly increased ‘trust’ factor in Australia. To register these domains, you must prove eligibility through a close and substantial link to your registered business name and provide your ABN. This is also what makes them easier to register – flipers cannot get these!

  • Use .com.au or the new .au domains for any Australian business or organisation
  • Use .net.au alongside .com.au or for directory style sites. 
  • Use .org.au for not-for-profit organisations or groups

4. Register for the longest period of time available

Albeit small, registering your domain name for longer periods (eg, 3,5,10+ years) can give you an SEO advantage. It also often comes with a discounted rate and provides peace of mind knowing it’s yours. 

5. Register your domains somewhere you trust

Tip five is going to save you some potential headaches! Over the years we have helped clients with all kinds of domain registration issues. Here’s how to avoid some of the most common pitfalls.

  • Choose your domain registrar carefully. Ensure they are in the same country as you (so there are no timezone issues for support!). 
  • Keep it all together. To save yourself some headaches later down the track, use the same registrar for your website & email hosting as well as your domain. That way you know the server and domain will be configured to play nice together. (we offer this)

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As a mum of twins and a small business owner myself, I understand the struggle of balancing all the competing priorities you have. I am passionate about helping my clients automate processes, reduce admin costs & save time, while also building online revenue streams to reduce the stress of getting consistent work/customers. I hope this post helps you too!
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