Domain names have grown in popularity over the past 20 years. In recent months, we have seen further domain extensions become available (.CLUB, .GURU, .NAME etc), which have allowed domain buyers to register specific keywords that were previously unavailable. However, these new extensions also create further confusion for new domain buyers on which domains/ domain extensions are best to use, with some choosing to purchase a Premium Domain. But, what is a Premium Domain?
Premium Domains are often short and memorable domain names that are now available for resale. In this blog article, we will present 6 components that combined are considered the main formula of a Premium Domain:
#1. Domain Extension
.COM is KING. The .com extension is the most popular and recognised of all of its other counterparts. Domain extensions, .net and .org follow .com is second and third place. Most Premium Domains will be .com’s, but strong keywords with .net or .org extensions can be good investments.
However, CCTLD’s (Country code top-level domains) such as .com.mx, .ca, .usa, .co.uk etc can also have significant weight, if the keyword and domain extension combination are relevant for that local market.
#2. Keyword Rich
Good keyword domains are highly marketable. Premium domains contain between 1-3 popular keywords/ phrases, in which users can immediately recognise the purpose of the website. As section #4. Length will touch on, the shorter keywords are better because they are easy to remember and type. Therefore, making them easy to market, whilst helping contribute towards your SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) ranking.
Some examples of good keyword domains are:
And some bad examples:
English keywords tend to hold more value than other foreign language specific keywords due to the volume of the world’s population that speak English. However, if the domain is specific to a set market and is supported by the domain extension, then this can be as equally as marketable.
Exceptions to this rule are 3/4 letter acronyms or 3/4 number .com domains. These domains are in short supply and have grown in popularity over the past 5 years.
#3. No Hyphens
Avoid hyphens at all costs. Hyphens are used by domain buyers to help breakup keywords, when the unhyphenated domain is unavailable. However, the hyphens are hard to market and often forgotten by the user. This can result in users going to the wrong domain or receive a ‘Page Unavailable’ message.
The shorter the better. Short and memorable domains are the easiest to market. Longer domains usually more than 3 words are the opposite. Longer domains are harder to type and are prone to mistakes, whilst restricting the ability to market effectively.
Use of 3/4 letter and number names are recognised as premium domains because of their ability to enable companies/ organisations/ website projects with longer titles to brand themselves with a short snappy domain.
The ideal character length of a premium domain is 10 characters or less. What short premium domains can you name?
#5. Traffic & Page Rank
Traffic is a bonus. Premium Domains that receive traffic and have a page ranking within search engines are a blessing. Domain traffic demonstrates that there is a certain level of SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) already in place and as such has been ranked by the search engine(s) for set keywords.
Although not essential when considering a premium domain, traffic and ranking presents an immediate demand for the domain. Investors could immediately take advantage of its position to grow the domain as they wish.
Like a good antique, Premium Domains are usually well aged. A Premium Domain should tell a story into its history and how it came about.
Most of the popular (keyword-rich .com) domains were registered by 2000. Domains aged 10 years or more add a sense of nostalgia and purpose. After all, there is a reason why they have been renewed each year. Premium Domains stand out from the rest and should have age to backup the rest of their attributes.
If you are considering buying a domain, it is worth researching its history:
- What is the domain currently used for?
- What has been used for in the past?
- Has the domain been used as an adult site?
- What target audience did it have?
- Does it have any existing backlinks? (What websites are linking into this domain?)
Make sure that you do your research, so that you give your domain, the best possibility to establish itself. Be aware how the domain could be perceived if you are launching into a new market.
Do you have some more insight on what makes a Premium Domain? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.