Domain names are powerful, unique and a really great marketing tool!
Domain names are a piece of the marketing puzzle but can be a very important one. There are many reasons domain names are important in marketing but here are some key points I would like to point out.
Options! Domain names allow for a lot of options. Sending and getting people to visit something is not easy, but domain names have been around now since 1985, so people know by seeing them that they will be visiting a website. That is powerful by itself. With smartphones and computers in so many places, it is very easy for people to access a website.
Domain names and tools that work with them, provide unique tracking that TV and print advertising for an example doesn’t allow. Tracking conversions. Using a specific domain name in certain campaigns will allow you to track its performance, location, in and outs of the website and much more. Running a TV ad with a phone number is ok, but running a TV ad with a specific, catchy domain name can be very valuable just based on the data you can collect due to people visiting the domain name used in the ad.
You can own more than one domain and use more than one domain! If you would like to focus on reorders for an example, you can use a make sense domain relating to just that! Again, this allows you to track things and you can create a message with your domain name that makes sense! Picture your packaging and a consumer holding it. They just poured out the last of your product, but you have a make sense domain name for reordering slapping the consumer in the face at that very important moment… RefillMe.com Because We Need Each Other. This is effective, make sense marketing at an important time! (yes I own that domain, but it fits the bill as a make sense marketing domain)
Memorable! People are busy, have a short memory span and forget just about everything! That is why billions of dollars each year are spent on advertising. People constantly need to be reminded of brands and the products they offer. Having a memorable domain name for your brand, products, services and marketing is vital! PicturePrintingTodayOnline.net is NOT going to cut it! MyPrints.com, yes! Personal and makes sense! QuickPrints.com, yes! Conveys a message of speed and what the consumer is interested in.
Organic! Billions of searches are done on the internet every single day. Organic web searches are terms that people already know and perform. Home Loan, Fantasy Sports, Designer Shoes, Hosting, Marketing Agency etc. These organic searches are called keywords on the internet and search engines deliver results based on the keywords searched. One key factor looked at, is the domain name! How well does the domain name and the content on the website relate to the users search. There are many SEO factors that come into play for ranking a domain/website but the domain does play a roll. Online advertising is expensive and a way to reduce the cost is to have organic search engine rankings and domain names can greatly assist in this! Here is a case study (PDF) showing how a generic domain name performed compared to a “business name” domain. High click through rate, lower CPC for the generic domain if you don’t wish reading it.
The above is a HUGE miss by many companies. Stuck in the easy and old routine of paying Google each month for ads, when a domain can give them the same results, longer, with no added CPC cost!
Stand Out! Premium domain names can stick out! Candy.com is a premium domain name that sticks out! BobsCandyStore.com not so much! Candy.com is a brand by itself. It’s a highly searched term (candy) with no branding/advertising/marketing done by the owners of Candy.com!
A little, unknown candy company called Melville Candy Company took a risk and spent $3 Million dollars and purchased Candy.com. Well, that little candy company is now a worldwide known candy seller. They were once lost in the mix of other candy companies offering candy on the web, but rose to the top of search engines for the organic search term candy, and many more candy related terms.
Yes, $3MM is a lot of money, but is it when you pay for your risk in the first year of business under Candy.com? Hell No and that is what the Melville Candy Company did. Today, that $3MM was peanuts!
Trust! There is something unique about premium domain names that gives an internet user the warm and fuzzy. I think in general, people understand a premium domain name when they see one but just do not think of it that way. Think PG.com compared to PandG.com. Big vs small is one way I look at it. Big businesses have premium domain names, most small companies do not. I personally feel more comfortable clicking on a big business service than an unknown one. I really do when making a purchase on a website. I very, very rarely will buy from a website on a non-premium domain name, simply because I do not trust that I will get my order or that my information will be stolen.
Match it! Taglines are something that should be owned as a domain name! Why? Because it makes sense. They can be used in an ad that displays your tagline. Think Nike and its famous “Just Do It” tagline. They own JustDoIt.com and it would simply make sense in an ad to consumers! Got Milk? Yep, that famous one! California Milk Processor Board could be displayed, but GotMilk.com is THE one to be used!
Match your domain name with the main message of your campaign, it just makes sense!
Value! Sure you can spend $100,000 for a TV ad and poof, it’s gone! Domain names are actually really inexpensive when you break down the many values they hold. Brand name (for some), catchy, memorable etc. If a domain name is already owned by somebody, that doesn’t mean it can not be acquired! That will be the larger cost, but after that… we are talking about $10 annually to renew it to maintain ownership. $100 for 10 YEARS! Hello cheap! Add in the fact that a great domain name, a little SEO and you can naturally rank in search engines for a popularly searched term with no advertising cost… and like I said, domain names are a powerful beast!
The Upgrade! Second rate is and will always be! The Facebook became simply Facebook and the domain name has to match! Facebook for an example owns about 2,800 domain names. Some relate to products they offer, like NewsFeed.com for an example. They also own the two letter acronym domain name FB.com, which they use for several things, with email being one. They paid a reported $8.5 Million for that domain name alone! NewsFeed.com much less, but it makes sense as the news feed feature is very popular and important to Facebook.
Twitter.com as we know it now, was once TWTTR.com
It’s not too late to upgrade if needed. Do not restrict yourself.
Overall! Domain names are very important and will remain very important to businesses. Marketing with them makes sense due to the ease of visiting a website and what that site can offer to the consumer. Owning more than one domain is important, using more than one domain is important. Do not restrict yourself to “your business name” because it can cost you! Premium domain names are assets and will retain and mostly gain value! Save advertising costs by using generic domains that are already searched for and are known!