Wall Street Journal on Choosing that Domain Name

The Wall Street Journal has an article on choosing the right company and domain name for a business, saying it “is one of the most important decisions a company will ever make. But a lot of small businesses don’t give it nearly enough thought.”The article profiles one entrepreneur, Damien Wolf, who when it came time to get a domain name for his business, found the obvious one for his business – Wolf Creative – was not the best choice as it did not explain his business well.”There’s so much riding on a company’s name. It has to stand out, and be easy to remember and look up. And the pitfalls are many. To name a few, in addition to the headaches Mr. Wolf encountered, a bad name can fail to engage customers, or become outdated as the company grows and adds products and services.”But many small companies don’t understand the basics of choosing a good name. They put little thought into the process, says Peter Montoya, president of a financial-services marketing firm in Tustin, Calif., and end up settling on names that are meaningful to them but not clients.”The article says the first step in choosing the right domain name “is usually pinpointing the company’s unique value or service. Companies should ask themselves, ‘What are you doing to bring value to potential customers and what’s your vision?’ says Scott Kuehl, president of BrandResolve LLC, a St. Cloud, Minn., brand-consulting firm.”So back to Mr Wolf. He called his business OrangeSeed Design – his business is about helping others grow, plus people ask him where did he get the name from.The same process can work for domain names. The example of Pacific Biosciences is given. Here the company was previously called Nanofluidics – difficult to spell, pronounce and gave people the impression it was involved in the study of fluids. It wasn’t.So the company had naming parties with staff that included alcohol and pizza. A number of names were thought of, but the domain names were taken. Eventually someone blurted out “Pacific Biosciences”, the domain name for the combined names was available, and the name was born.The article includes some domain names “do’s and don’ts” and recommends checking on a domain name’s availability before settling on a company name, and that the domain name should be closely related to the company’s name. But, don’t sacrifice an effective company name if the domain name isn’t available.To read the full article from the Wall Street Journal, see http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120526710337728101.html.

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