One of the smallest investments businesses can make has one of the greatest returns. That investment is a domain name, and it is worth every penny. The primary reason to buy domain names is that it “evens the playing field” in the worldwide marketplace. The cost is minimal, about $10 a year. So, what do companies get for that?
First, understanding what a domain name is might help. The name represents the numerical code for the IP address. Domain names are organized with the most important information on the right. For instance, “.com” signifies a commercial site, “.edu,” is a university or school and “.org,” an organization or agency. The component just to the left of that lets the searcher know that the site is a subdivision of one of those designations. Other information can be added to the left of that component to mean that it is a subdivision of the previous information. That means for each page of a company website, a designation is added to take searchers to the exact website page they seek. Then, they may tailor their searches for “gallery”. good company.com. A company domain name can help consumers find out exactly what they want to know about the business. Domain names are so vital to E-commerce that they are sold like commodities.
One of the biggest concepts in marketing is branding. Businesses like Kleenex and Levi Jeans have built their credibility around their brand and the consumer trusts them to provide quality products. They can even introduce new products under the initial brand and they arrive already infused with that perceived trust.
If company domains contain key words, search engines like Google and Bing can land on the domain when those words are searched. Even if the customers forget the actual name, they can search by the key words. That can reinforce the brand if their searches bring them to the domain instead of to a competitor.
Once businesses have domain names, it gives them the opportunity to use it to diversify. Anything they sell, or promote, under their domain name will have the same credibility as the initial product offering. That is why it is important to own all possible corruptions of the domain name so that competitors can’t use a close facsimile and trade on that trust.
A Domain name puts small business on the same footing as a large corporation in the global market. With a virtual showroom and a searchable name, customers don’t know if the company whose site they are visiting is an international corporation or a “mom-and-pop” shop. They have the same access to world-wide consumers.
Customers will likely forget a website URL, and they certainly won’t remember the IP address. They will recall a name and can search for the company that way. Plus, if the website is moved to another server, the IP will change, but the domain name can stay the same.
Getting a domain name is a wise business investment. Of course, that investment is more valuable if the domain is well thought-out and branded.