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Victor Leigh

Does the length of a domain name make any difference?

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I read somewhere that short domain names are in great demand.

 

In fact, there's no need to try to register a new domain name under four letters because just about every possible combination of the alphabet has been taken. There are probably people who just buy up every single possible domain name they can as soon as the extension is open for registration.

 

Now the big question is whether it really makes any difference? Is there any difference between a short domain name and a longer domain name? Like, just as an example, is there any difference between, say, comtips.com and computertechniques.com.

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Interesting topic, and I believe short domains are much more brandable, and usually rank higher in google. The shorted domain I have ever owned was 6 characters and it was easily the highest traffic numbers I've had for a domain.

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I think it's just easier for people to remember and type in the address  bar from memory.  

 

But overall if you have content people want they will find you.

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Well, I do own one 4-letter domain, p7bb.com, but I haven't quite made up my mind what to do with it. The last idea I had was to make it into a forum, since the 'bb' in it certainly points to a forum. Only thing is what kind of forum.

 

So, from what you have said, I gather that memory retention is more valuable than the length or brevity of the domain name, as the case might be. Which means that a short domain name which is unpronounceable like, say, XTZ, would not have much value. Right?

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Personally, many a times, the shorter the domain name, the more confusing it becomes. Just in your case - the p7bb - the bb sounds like a bulletin board but it might not be the case and you might have a full fledged corporate website. Though, names of companies many a times are used and they in no way speak about what they are into - like gumby. Personally I have always been in favor of longer website/domain names :)

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You have a point there. Of the big sites that I know of, the only ones with  short domain names that comes to mind immediately are BBC and CNN but then those short names were already established names long before the internet. One company that I know of which started life in the internet and has a very short domain name is cj.com. The 'cj' stands for Commission Junction.

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Well, I do own one 4-letter domain, p7bb.com, but I haven't quite made up my mind what to do with it. The last idea I had was to make it into a forum, since the 'bb' in it certainly points to a forum. Only thing is what kind of forum.

 

So, from what you have said, I gather that memory retention is more valuable than the length or brevity of the domain name, as the case might be. Which means that a short domain name which is unpronounceable like, say, XTZ, would not have much value. Right?

No any 3 letter .com domain is worth a lot.

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I like to think that a domain should be short enough to remember what it is, but long enough to be unique enough to remember.

 

I think overall there isn't a max or min length that we should be looking into but there is such thing as too long unless there is a reason: http://www.downforeveryoneorjustme.com/

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Every single additional character is one more chance for a human user to mess up the url. I specify 'human' because sure, a link won't really matter when it comes to length because it will point to the right place regardless. If you expect people to type your domain, though, then you greatly increase the risk of misspellings and typos every time. And if people can't remember your site name because it's too long, then that's even worse. 

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Yes. It does. Smaller and catchy names are easier to remember. I have seen people going for 4-5 words domain name, and they are looking for organic traffic alone to an EMD website, and hence it may not be a problem. But shorter domain names are always better.

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The only difference can be in remembering short domain name easier than the longer one.

Another reason is because short domains are more brandable. This goes hand in hand with the first reason.

In terms of SEO impact there is no real difference especially if those domain names are used to create blogs around them.

Blog posts can be always optimized with keywords that you can add to urls of the posts.

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Small catchy names are awesome, even if it's a seemingly random combination of letters.

 

Look at XKCD.com, a very successful webcomic with a name that is somehow memorable

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Short domain names have been massively bought by site flippers. When the domain is aged it is usually purely sold for it name, not its content backlinks etc. LLLL domains can go very high if you take a look at flippa for example, even names that don't make much sense. Not to mention that if you have a good earning history with proof, you can get double the money. So yeah, go for shorter length when buying a domain, it is also easier to remember if you are trying to do some branding for your business. 

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I do believe having a short(er) domain is only useful for the fact that it is easier on the memory for visitors who may wish to return to your site, but then, I would say that having a memorable or catchy domain that pertains to your site's idea is far more valuable and gets the job done better. For instance, you do not necessarily want the domain 'p19.com' if you are going into the finance or nutritional niche, or any niche you plan to delve in seriously, for that matter. Either way, you are much better off acquiring your clever or catchy domain name rather than an unnecessarily short one before it is gone.

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Short domains tend to be the most popular ones. For example, apple.com is a short, simple and intuitive name to give to a website and it represents the comapny perfectly. Having said that, however, if the long domain makes sense or is catchy in some ways which may make it easy to remember, it won't make much of a difference. Facebook is a mediocre level domain name and it's very popular. 

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I think that if you make the domain comtips.com, that moe people will go to the site because they'll remember it better.

Since they'll forget it, they'll probably google up something that was on the page, find another page, and then like that website better than they like yours.

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Considering how Google has cracked down on Exact Match Domain names in the past couple of years, I would speculate that they are likely taking domain name length into consideration - at least as a warning sign that the domain might be spammy. Longer domain names probably mean the site owner was trying to use a keyword rich domain - a technique popular with black hat SEO folks, who are routinely setting up link wheels and poor quality micro-sites on these.

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A shorter domain name will be easy for people to remember. And it is also good for search results. Imagine how hard it is for you to type a long domain name. You will be referring back to check if you have the right spelling. It is just hectic. 

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I think shorter domains are more popular because they are easier to remember and, in our fast pased society, easier to type. For example, remember overstock.com? They had a big advertising campaign telling customes they are now o.co. Their brand is now "o.co, also known as overstock.com"

 

I think with our new smartphones we prefer less typing as well. Less room to make mistakes and have some crazy auto-correction.

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I don't think the length of the domain makes any difference in search engine rankings. Shorter domain names are in demand because they can be easily remembered by the visitors and they also need to type less letters in the address bar.

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I think the shorter the domain name the better and if I can not get a one word domain name. Then I try and get a memorable one, if your name is hard to remember people are going to forget about your website right away. Some times I sit there for hours trying to come up with a domain name.

 

Greg

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The domain name itself is crucial in order to be found on the internet easily. You can set the length of the domain name however way you want as long as it make it easy for google to find it during searches for your business or services especially if you know nothing about SEO.

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I think the shorter the domain name the better and if I can not get a one word domain name. Then I try and get a memorable one, if your name is hard to remember people are going to forget about your website right away. Some times I sit there for hours trying to come up with a domain name.

 

Greg

 

Yep. I think getting something memorable is a lot better than getting some one word domain that's forgettable. Then again, if your site is catchy enough, it wouldn't be THAT big of a problem 

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