Should you use more than one domain name for your business site?
The dream domain name for your business is just in front of you – it is a perfect match for what you do, it seems to be available for registration and you are a click away from snapping it up.
However, your enthusiasm gets weakened by the number of similar domain name suggestions on the search form.
Oh, do I really need to register some of those as well? Does it matter if I have one or more variations of my main site name?
Check out the list of practice-inspired ideas and suggestions we have compiled for you in this blog post.
When you should get more than one domain for your business website – best practices
Investing in variations of the primary domain name of your business site is one of the best ways to enhance your web presence and protect your brand from the competitors.
There are some general, time-proven considerations every business should make to determine the amount of domain name variations they need in their particular case.
1. Avoiding TLD (Top Level Domain) confusion
When choosing a .COM domain name for your business site, for instance, you are actually laying hands on one of the 1000+ extensions this domain could actually end with.
So, from your point of view, you may have the perfect site name combination that could easily be advertised and draw a good amount of prospects to your business.
You purchase the top level domain (TLD) and undertake a marketing campaign aimed at this site.
But think for a moment, how simple it could be for someone to type .CO instead of .COM in the browser and land on your closest rival’s site without even realizing that!
All of your marketing efforts will be futile because you will have easily lost a client to your competitor beyond your control.
For this reason, if your site is on .COM, it would be a wise decision to reserve the .CO (due to the phonetic similarity) and the .NET (another commonplace TLD) variation for your business site as well.
In another typical scenario, if you have chosen a niche-specific TLD for your site, like .LOAN for example, or a country-code TLD specific to your market, it would be smart to also get the .COM version of your domain as well.
Due to the still ongoing .COM dominance on the web, visitors automatically relate websites to this extension, so reserving the .COM variation of your domain name will help you avoid confusion.
2. Capturing misspelled searches for your site
Your new site is fresh and compelling, but if someone misspells the domain name, they would not be able to see it and even worse, they may land on a different site.
To avoid losing visitors due to errors and typos, consider registering domain variations for the common spelling mistakes people make when searching for your brand or the product or service you sell, and redirect them to your primary domain.
Google, for example, owns googl.com and gogle.com and redirects visitors to google.com.
The same goes for yahoo.com (yhoo.com, yaho.com) and amazon.com (amzon.com, amazn.com).
3. Improving search engine visibility on local searches
Search engines have been prioritizing country-code TLDs in local search results for some time now. This makes ccTLDs a real ranking factor for your site in the market you operate in.
With a ccTLD version of your domain name, you will increase the chances of your website appearing high in local search results.
Registering a country-specific domain can also help prevent your competitors from profiting from local versions of your brand name.
For this reason brands like Nike register domains such as nike.com.au and redirect them to their main site, nike.com.
All this makes registering a ccTLD, like .US if you are from the U.S. or COM.AU (if you are from Australia), a really good idea.
4. Leveraging the creative power of new TLDs
>> for your promo campaigns
Using domain variations to support a creative campaign can be another great way to draw more prospects.
Let’s say you are a photography company and your primary domain is coolphotographyzone.com.
You are launching a promo wedding campaign and want to gain as much attention in this niche as possible.
Then, it’d make sense to create a landing page and register a dedicated domain for your promotional campaign, using the niche nTLD – .WEDDING (coolphotographyzone.wedding).
This way, it will be much easier for your wedding portfolio to stick in your prospects’ mind than by using coolphotographyzone.com/wedding-photography or similar URLs.
Plus, a dedicated landing page and URL makes it easier to track the success of your creative campaign.
>> for positioning your business
If you are running an e-commerce store, you could easily create a dedicated shopping zone for your brand by registering a new TLD like .SHOP or .STORE (e.g. nike.store, swatch.store, apple.store, etc.).
Another smart way to use an nTLD is to help visitors easily navigate to certain content on your website.
For instance, you could use .promo to direct visitors to a special promo area on your store.
If you are selling software or an e-book, you can use the creative .download or .book as an immediate indication of what your site is about when advertising it to your target audience.
If you are in the web hosting business, registering the industry-specific .HOST TLD for your store (yourbrand.host) will give you more opportunities to position your brand on the market than any other generic TLD you may have already laid hands on.
As a .HOST-accredited registrar, we are running a 94% OFF campaign on 1st-year registrations for this industry-specific domain extension.
How to manage multiple domain names for your site
After settling on the specific variations and extensions you want to use for your online presence, you are recommended to get all of them from a single registrar.
Keeping all name versions of your website in one account will make them much easier to manage.
After that, you will need to set up URL redirection for all domain variations that are meant to lead to your primary domain.
From an SEO point of view, using 301 redirection to forward one domain to another is the best way to run more than one domain for a website, with no risk of being penalized due to duplicate content.
On our web hosting platform, you can make 301 redirects with a single click from the “Parking & Redirection” area of the “My Domains” section of the control panel.
Maintaining more than one domain name for your business presence could help enhance your marketing efforts and maximize traffic volumes.
If you can identify different cases whereby a variation of your primary domain might be needed, like common misspellings of your site name or expanding into local markets, then giving multiple domains a try could be a smart decision for boosting your online identity.