Choosing The Right Domain Extension To Aid A Better SEO
The other day, I met an old friend who expressed his desire to start his own business. He had a cool idea which I shouldn’t disclose right now!! And businesses today need to have their own websites in order to reach out to a wider consumer base. So, having already planned the website name, the only thing which seemed to bother him was the selection of the right domain extension. Long after he left, I kept thinking about how to really come up with a solution to this confusing matter. If you have the same problem as his, you are reading the correct article. Read on!
As you all very well know, a website name consists of the Second Level Domain (SLD) and the Top Level Domain (TLD). Ok, let’s just make things a little easier. SLD is the actual name that you give to your website, or you rather purchase, while TLD is the one that goes around the web in the form of a .com or a .net or a .org and so on and so forth! Since the SLD is up to you, you need to study your market well and find target keywords that would help you find the right domain extension or a great SLD. I am leaving that up to you. What I would like to bring light on is the issue regarding the correct selection of the TLD which is best for SEO.
Selecting a TLD for your website can be a very tedious job. Rather, I can safely omit the “can be” part as it is definitely tedious. Around a billion domains have been sold up till now since 1985, and that is a cause of great concern. Domains that are brandable are fast becoming non-existent, and business owners are opting for lesser known domain names that are affecting SEO. In order to make life easier for you folks, I would like to present some tips regarding the right domain extension selection – more specifically the TLD selection.
1. Target location of your business
If your business is targeted to the consumers of a particular location, then finding that location would help you in selecting the right domain extension that is apt for your website. So, suppose you only plan to have your products targeted in India, then a TLD of .co.in would work great for you. Selecting a geo-specific TLD can work wonders as it will help the website rank for the countries where the citizens prefer local websites.
2. Target industry of your business
Yeah, that does actually matter. The target industry is a great way of choosing a TLD. The friend of mine whom I was talking about was targeting the marketing industry, and he could use a .marketing domain. Similarly, a person attached to the food industry could use a .food domain!
The main plus point about having the right domain extension – one related to your industry – is that your potential customers as well as search engines would know your business better. The only problem, though, is that you have to be double sure about your industry, because you can’t just have your food business get a .handicrafts extension months later if you suddenly find out that your industry is actually handicrafts! Apart from that, it’s a great way in deciding your TLD.
3. The .com extension
For the not-so net-savvy mass out there, the only website domain known is the .com extension. That speaks volume about the right domain extension that accounts for around 75% of the total websites running presently. So, always try to buy a .com TLD, since it’s the best for SEO and is 20 times more powerful and valuable than its nearest competitors .net and .org.
Having shared with you some tips for the right domain extension selection, one question that might arise is how would a TLD determine and affect SEO? Google has near about 200 ranking factors for websites and domain name is just one out of the lot. So, it alone has no noticeable impact on SEO. However, a proper combo of SLD and TLD positively affects SEO.
A great domain name, where everything is spelt correctly, has a great impact on the reputation of your business as well your website. And where reputation increases, popularity can’t linger far behind.
Though domain name selection has negligible impact on SEO, still search engines use keywords in domain names as relevancy signals by bolding them out. Though not a drastic optimization step, still a decent way to boost you rankings.
Since Google has been working on improving its local search, using a geo-specific TLD would land your business in front of the correct audience base.
If you have a great idea for a business, if you have studied your market clearly, and if you are confident about your plans, then go for it. Select the best and the right domain extension and name, provide the best SEO possible and have great contents, and bingo! You would be standing on the pinnacle of success before you know it!