How to get a good domain name in 2023
A good domain name is the starting point for any online business, but with over 360 million of them already registered, finding the right one can feel like an impossible task.
Here are some tips to help you find a domain name that works for you. (Prices in this article are correct at the time of writing and do not include VAT.)
Think beyond traditional domain extensions
When you think of domain names, you probably mainly think of .com and .co.uk. There’s a reason for that. These are popular, recognisable domain extensions that have formed the backbone of the web for decades.
But if you’re trying to find a domain name in 2022, that popularity can be a drawback. With so many .com and .co.uk domains registered, you may find the one you want is already taken.
For that reason, it can pay to think beyond these traditional domain extensions and look at other options. In fact, .co domains could be a good choice if you’re struggling to find a suitable .com,
There are also a huge range of extensions including location-specific ones like .london, industry-focused options such as .coffee and .solutions, as well as business-oriented terms such as .group, .company and .ltd. There are also other generic options such as .email and .info.
These newer extensions can help you find a domain name which helps customers understand where you’re based or what you do. They also open up more choices.
Note: At the time of writing, we’re currently offering .co.uk .uk for just 79p for the first year. Get the perfect choice for your business. Limited-time offer.
Get one for free
Every penny counts when you’re running a small business. Small costs can add up and the last thing you want to do is waste money on a frivolous venture. Fortunately, there are ways to claim a free domain name with 123 Reg.
If you need extra tools to enhance your online business, why not try our Website Builder or Microsoft 365 plans, both of which come with a free domain included. That way, you can take your business online straight away and grow it for less. Win-win!
With Website Builder, you can register a free .co.uk, .com, .me.uk, org.uk or .uk domain, while Microsoft 365 allows you to claim a free .email, .info or .ltd domain. For more general tips on how to claim a free domain, check out our article: How to get a domain name for free
Think keywords and location
If you’ve got an existing business, picking a good domain name can be even trickier. If you can’t get your exact business name as a domain, search for variants which include keywords that relate to your business and/or your location.
This kind of domain can help people understand who you are and what you do before they even visit your website.
Keep it brief and easy to understand
The shorter a domain name is, the easier it is to remember. Anything over 14 characters is probably too long and won’t stick in people’s heads.
You should also avoid domain names that could easily be confused with something else. For example, avoid words that sound like other words such as “to” which could be two, too or even 2.
Someone who hears your domain name spoken aloud should be able to spell it accurately.
Don’t put off your purchase
If you find a domain name you like and it’s available, buy it as soon as possible. If you put buying it on the back burner and then return to purchase it at a later date, you may find that someone else has snapped it up in the meantime.
Finding a good domain name is tricky enough without having to go through the whole process twice, just because you didn’t grab one that was available.
Don’t be afraid of buying multiple domains
Buying more than one domain name for a project can be a good idea. For example, you might want to purchase your chosen domain across multiple extensions to protect your brand and help make sure people always visit the correct website. (You don’t have to build a separate website for every domain, just choose one main domain name and redirect the others to it.)
You might also find that while you’re brainstorming domains you come up with ideas that might work for future projects. Snapping up these domains now will make sure you don’t miss out in the future.
Buying a domain name can feel overwhelming, but if you go in with a plan, you’ll be able to pick one up that works for your business.
Or, if you still need help, check out this guide to choosing a business name and domain name.