It may seem small, but the domain name is one of the most crucial assets a lawyer can have and will help promote a brand’s excellence over mediocrity. According to a recent study, 96% of people seeking legal advice use a search engine first. (Google Consumer Survey, Nov 2013). Thus, it means your domain name is your first impression. This article shortlists essential information for your convenience.
A domain name explained.
A domain name is the online version of a street address; it is what people type into your browser to visit your website. Some familiar examples include Google.com, Youtube.com, and Facebook.com.
While your potential client can input a human-friendly domain name and be directed to the websites they’re looking for, a website’s actual address is a complicated numerical IP address (for example, 192.168. 1.1).
What are the parts of the domain name?
There are two parts to a domain name. Part one is known as a second-level domain name (SLD). In the example provided above, this refers to Google, YouTube, and Facebook. Part two is the “.com” the domain name ends with, also called the top-level domain name (TLD). These parts are customizable, and you can select any domain name you’d like.
For clients to understand what you do, you may wish to put the name of the firm, the practice area, or even the location in your domain name.
What is the cost of purchasing a domain name?
The type of domain you purchase and the registrar from which you buy your domain name will determine price variances. A brand-new domain typically costs USD5 to USD50 per year. Premium domains can occasionally cost up to thousands or millions per year.
Sometimes, the domain name you want may not be available because it is already booked and owned by someone else. You can hire a broker to negotiate on your behalf to buy it though it may sometimes come at a higher price.
The easiest solution would be to choose an available domain name. Before you do so, it is worthwhile to compare domain registrar offerings to select the best ones you need. Some examples of popular registrars are GoDaddy, BlueHost, and Google Domains.
Things to remember when choosing your domain name.
You want your future clients to remember your law firm quickly. Before you go ahead and press the add to cart button, we recommend going through the checklist below to ensure that you’ve got your bases covered:
- Is it simple and easy to remember? Short domains are easier to remember and type, which helps users navigate directly to your site. Ensure the terms in your domain name are relevant to your area of practice and domain name, and try not to include punctuations like dashes, as that may cause typos.
- Please don’t make it too long. For example, a domain name like “YishunBedokCorporateLawDisputeResolution.com.sg” will put off potential clients because it is difficult to remember and register.
- Is it easy to understand? Try not to include legal jargon in your domain name, as your potential clients may not be able to understand it.
- Please don’t make it too casual. “TheTravellingLawyer.com” may sound friendly and personal, but it doesn’t tell your potential clients who you are or how you can provide your service.
How to buy a domain name
Firstly, google for the range of domain registrars available. Next, compare their prices, services, offers, and reputation. A domain registrar with a good reputation and rating is trustworthy.
Secondly, check your domain name eligibility. Once you’ve confirmed your preferred domain provider and domain name, it is essential to check if the name is already trademarked. Next, key in your list of preferred domain names in each of your shortlisted domain registrars so that you can compare prices. Doing this extra step will save you time and money.
Third, complete your domain registration process with your chosen domain registrar. Read the terms and conditions carefully before payment. You’d often find that you’d have to renew your domain name and your hosting package annually.
Another thing to note is that you will only own the domain name for the duration you pay. Some legal firms renew their domain and hosting packages annually, whereas some choose to pre-pay for years in advance. Whichever option you choose, be sure to remember what your renewal date is. Established domain registrars sometimes send reminders to renew your domain and hosting packages.
And finally, keep your credentials such as the password, billing information, and credit card details somewhere safe so that cybercriminals cannot get that information. It is a security measure that helps provide a degree of cyber-security for your law firm.
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