We are living in the age of the Internet. A company’s domain name is one of the most important elements of their business. If you are starting a small business and people have a hard time finding you online, your bottom line will be negatively impacted. Therefore, your choice of a domain name is a critical decision that should not be taken lightly. In the vast majority of cases, a company will choose to register its name as its domain name. In some cases, a company will choose a variation of its name, or a product it sells, as its domain name. Whatever the case may be, great care must go into making this critical determination. Here is how to register a domain name for your online business.

1. Choose a good name

Before you can even begin the process of registering a domain name, you need to decide on a name. Ideally, you want to choose a name that is short and easy for people to remember. The longer and more difficult your domain name is for people to remember, the less traffic you will get to your site. You do not want to rely on Google correcting the mistakes of people who type your name in wrong. Shorter is always better in the world of domain names. If possible, try to register the name of your company. If it is not available, try to register a name that is very close to it, or the name of a product you are known for selling. You can search online to find out what people think the best domain name registrar is.

2. What extension are you going to use?

Although the domain name you choose is very important, the extension is another key decision that must not be overlooked. Most people who are starting small online businesses want to have a .com extension because it is the most popular. They feel it will immediately give them a leg up in the competitive online business community. While that may have been true several years ago, things are rapidly changing, as they tend to do in the tech world. It is becoming more common every day to see startup companies using .net or .org extensions. Since these are now more common than they have ever been before, companies no longer feel that they are outsiders that will be ignored by the masses for using a less popular extension. Companies not based in the U.S. will often opt to use the two-letter extension associated with their company.

3. Prevent others from using your domain name

Getting your domain name trademarked is a process that costs much more money than the vast majority of small businesses have at their disposal. Because of this, trademarking a domain name is usually out of the question, except for extremely large businesses. However, startup companies do have a way to make sure no other company steals their domain name. All a company needs to do is register their domain name in all of the various extensions that are available.