Choosing a web address can sometimes present you with an interesting paradox.

Why?

Mostly businesses will come to a web development company with an already established name, you know, the name of the business, perhaps like this:

Random Company Name & Sons Ltd

This is fine, yet when it comes to a domain name it starts to look a bit long:

www.randomcompanynameandsonsltd.com

Not too snappy is it?

There are a number of reasons why you would want a web development agency to help you out here which include:

Offline marketing

When it comes to offline channels, you really need something snappy, something that is easily remembered or easily typed into a mobile phone. Having a particularly long web address will do you no favours whatsoever here. Can you imagine the above web address on a business card or a leaflet? It’s a bit daft isn’t it?

Search optimisation

Search engines basically are not overly smart (debatable), they do what they are told, to be frank. So the golden rule with web addresses is to try to choose a name that does what it says on the tin (to a point). These work well when keywords are in the web address itself, and the keywords would come from the actual products that “Random Company Name & Sons Ltd” sell. Many very smart entrepreneurs have built entire web-based businesses around this concept. The idea here is to research what people are searching for, spot a gap not fulfilled,  then build the business around that.

If the business name is short and snappy (like ours for example) you can cover the keyword search option by using them in sub-directories like audana.com/portfolio for example.

Branding

Again here you want something you can easily pass around, use on merchandise, something that is very easy to remember and SHORT.

How can I shorten my web address?

Well you can’t, if you have a web address you have a web address, BUT you can purchase additional web addresses and use them effectively in your branding and communications.

Here is a client example

One of our clients is the Cornwall Music Education Hub, it’s a wonderful hub of organisations that cater for teaching and learning music for youth. That’s the actual name of the organisation, “Cornwall Music Education Hub” and associated url http//www.cornwallmusiceducationhub.org, and it’s a bit long for most marketing/communication purposes.

So we purchased additional domain names that redirect to the longer one. So now we have the following two snappier urls that can be used in marketing:

We’ve installed .htaccess redirects in each of the above so that a user will be put into a virtual taxi and sent over in a nano second to the longer url of cornwallmusiceducationhub.org (which incidentally, we want as it has “education” in the address, which is important for search reasons in this instance).

Other tools

You can also get creative and purchase domains from other countries that have differing extensions, so you can actually make words out of them. Here is one that is currently available that we’ve just made up: dancinghappi.ly – the .ly is a Libian registrar, and perfectly acceptable to use. One of the very well known url shortening services use a .ly in the way of bit.ly

There are many urls shortening services available that also come with an army of tool and statistics, Google even offer one in the way of goo.gl and .gl is for the country Greenland.

Let’s say you have a very long map url that you want people to share.

Now this is ridiculous: https://plus.google.com/101379215777953583104/about?gl=uk&hl=en that’s simply not going to cut it, is it? Instead we could shorten it and use:

Many options to consider, that’s why we are here, to help get your message out there easily and effectively.

Any thoughts?

 

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