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Which domain name ?

9:17 am on May 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Any feedback on the following would be appreciated:

1. Which extensions should I use when helping UK clients select a domain name when .co.uk is not available ? There are so many convoluted extensions, such as .uk.com, but I'm not sure how these are geo-targeted - or not - by Google. I have one .net domain for instance which is #1 on Google.co.uk 'the web', but nowhere at all on 'pages from the uk'.

What are the recommended guidelines for key phrase being part of the URL and hyphens? (It seems to me that the former works, even though some supposed experts say it doesn't matter)

If you include the company name, are these treated as 'stop words' ? I.e. is it detrimental to have 'SmithsWidgets' rather than 'widgets' ?

9:58 am on May 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

All depends on what you're looking for. If you're looking for search engine traffic then the domain helps but good, solid, and recent content will help more (far more). Google SEO / Search Engine Optimization for information in regards to this.

If you're looking for type in traffic then you'll need a good domain that you think people would type in to get to. A good domain helps, but the above mentioned content will help even more (both would be great).

If you're going to be relying on back links primarily, then the domain won't matter (since people will be clicking on the links).

Hyphens - personally I don't like them but some people swear by them. I do have a few hyphenated domains but they were perfect for my needs (keyword-keyword.com, etc..). If you can get a top rate hyphenated .com (or .co.uk in your case) for not much (even a reg fee) and it fits your site, I'd say go for it.

10:29 am on May 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Thanks for that - not too sure what you mean by

'If you can get a top rate hyphenated .com (or .co.uk in your case) for not much (even a reg fee) and it fits your site, I'd say go for it'

since I just buy new domains in the standard way and they only cost about 5 for a .co.uk and 15 for a .com so price is not the issue.

I do of course agree about content, but it was just the domain name question I was interested in. Is, for instance, a .uk.com domain treated as a .com or .uk or both? What are the best suffixes for the UK ?

2:05 am on May 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Gtate. dont go for uk.com or any extentions like that.
.co.uk or .com if both are not available go for a .net or as dragger said go for 2 words with or without a hyphen.
.com.uk and .gb.uk as far as i know is LESS known to UK users than .net.

[edited by: Webwork at 2:13 pm (utc) on May 10, 2008]
[edit reason] See Domain Forum Charter re promotional posts [/edit]

10:31 am on May 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Thanks for that mini-Alex, but what about the fact that I've already noticed that .net isn't ranked well on Google.co.uk, and indeed is one of the main reasons I'm asking advice on this forum about google.co.uk friendly domains ? Surely I'd be better off going for .org.uk or similar ?
11:33 am on May 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

well .org.uk is for ORGANIZATIONS, in theory if you are a non profit organisation you should only go for a .org or .org.uk and if you are not a organisation you should never go for a .orh INMH.
not associated with fasthosts but have all my.co.uk domains there. decent customer service too.
i am sure there are topics here on wether .net doesnt get ranked well. personally i think that .net doesnt rank well simply because people who have time and money to invest in their website pay for a .com and spend momey to make it number 1.
otherwise .net is exactly the same as .net.
you should however put in consideration what was written above by dragger. you should consider getting a.com or .co.uk and maybe adding a word to the domain name.
3:39 pm on May 11, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Just because the domain isn't ranked high with Google (any location) doesn't mean it won't do well after you have a site built up. You can have a domain that is a 30 random character . (some off-world ccTLD) and it will rank horrible with Google. But, if you SEO it right, have it full of good content rich with keywords and keep it current then you could easily rank high on Google, even with the horrible domain.

I'll agree with MiniAlex, if the .net is perfect and the .com and .co.uk are not available, go for it. I don't see many .gb.uk or .uk.com or .com.uk domains on the auction blocks (if I do see them I'll see 10-15 .co.uk domains before I see one of those).

Unless your looking to flip the domain for a profit, Google rankings off the bat are irrelevant (just make sure to submit a sitemap when you have your site done and ready for visitors).

5:21 pm on May 11, 2008 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

If you use a non ccTLD just make sure your sites server is located in the UK.

How I'd decided which extension to use would be semantic meaning. If you're primarily non-commercial then .org or .org.uk or if you're informational then .info or if you're a network then a .net

In the future semantic meaning between domain and tld will become increasing important for branding.