A domain name is a group of words, letters, numbers and/or acronym using either the name or the company/organization or what the company does. It is allowed to have dashes but no spaces or special characters (such as & – ampersand).
Capital letters are seen as the same as lower case (not case sensitive). With each domain name is an extension (such as .com). See below for more on extensions.
When searching for a domain name, make sure you consider the following things: Spelling: Easy to spell parts of the name. Good to have actual words like goodwords.com.
Hearing: Easy to understand when spoken. For instance words that start with p unless they are really obvious words, can be taken as t or b.
Reading/Seeing: Easy to read. You will have your domain on a business card probably. That is one place. And when someone is typing into a browser field, they are seeing the domain there. If your domain name has a series of lower case l (L) with to without i (eye), it is hard to read.
Typing: Easy to type. Too long of a domain name is hard to type and can result in misspellings.
Matching business name: Your business name could be Northern California Toilet Installers. If available, the most logical domain name would be ncti.com, which is taken. This company could have a main domain of northerncaliforniatoiletinstallers.com and a shorter domain of nctoilet.com or ncbathroom.com (something close to what the work or products are). The shorter domain is what you put on your business cards and give out to people but your longer name is what will appear in the browser URL field when people get to your site.*
Extensions: .Com vrs .Net vrs. dot others: These endings are called extensions (to the domain name).
– .com means a commercial venture.
– .net is also used for commerce but lesser sought after since .com is more widely used and known.
– .org means an organization.
– .gov is only available to qualified government agencies.
– .info is okay but not great.
Many other extensions are available, some at a low rate, some at a premium or ridiculous rate.
If you use the extensions that are different than the above, you run the risk of people not typing the right thing into their browsers.
* A domain name should really be named what your business does — this allows search engines to give you good ranking. You use shorter domain name for ease of communication with people but this one does not affect your search engine ranking. The shorter domain name is forwarded to the longer domain name which does affect your search engine ranking.
To search for a good domain name, go to domain name resellers, such as GoDaddy.com.