Domain names and how to protect your company/brand

So you’ve already got a domain name? Great!
However…One may not be enough.
Often it’s a good idea to register several domain names.

And why would you do that?

Simple: to protect your company name/brand so no-one else can grab it.

Sounds like overkill? Not really…

Let’s say your company is called Good Plumbing and you’ve got the domain name goodplumbing.co.nz. Now ask yourself how annoyed you’d be if you saw an ad in the paper with the domain name goodplumbing.nz.

Remember, even if your company is registered, there’s nothing to stop someone else registering that domain name.

You don’t need separate websites for each domain name. Multiple domain names can point to the same website.

Let’s do some brainstorming using Good Plumbing as an example for all the variations of a domain name.

Get ‘the other’ Country Code domain name extensions

For New Zealand domain names there are 15 so-called ‘Second Level Country Code’ extensions. The three most popular are: .co.nz, .nz and .net.nz.

Examples:
  • goodplumbing.co.nz
  • goodplumbing.nz
  • goodplumbing.net.nz

It’s worthwhile checking out the full list of available New Zealand domain name extensions.

Get the gTLD domain name extensions

gTLD domain names are the so-called ‘Generic Top Level Domains’. Currently almost every word (and combination of words) in the dictionary is registered as a .com domain name. So if your company name is still available, you should grab it – even if you’re not planning to go worldwide.

Examples:
  • goodplumbing.com
  • goodplumbing.net
  • goodplumbing.co
  • goodplumbing.kiwi

Other gTLDs worth considering:

  • goodplumbing.info
  • goodplumbing.biz

Get more than one Country Code extension

You might be doing business in Australia or the U.K.

Examples:
  • goodplumbing.com.au
  • goodplumbing.co.uk

Remember that specific rules may apply when registering domain names in other Country Code extensions.

Full company name and a shorter, easier-to-remember version

Your company might be known as a shorter abbreviated version of the full company name.

Example:
  • networksolutions.co.nz
  • netsol.co.nz

Acronym

You also are going to want to register your acronym if that’s how people refer to your business.

Example:
  • goodplumbingsolutions.co.nz
  • gps.co.nz

Common misspellings and phonetic variations

Look into common misspellings of your domain name and consider what happens if people only hear your domain name rather than see it in print. Be sure to register the ‘sounds like’ variations of your domain.

Examples:
  • plumbingworx.co.nz
  • plumbingworks.co.nz

Think about singular and plural forms

The same contingencies apply as for misspellings.

Example:
  • goodplumber.co.nz
  • goodplumbers.co.nz

Hyphenated version

If your domain name has two words, consider registering the hyphenated version. Likewise, if you have a hyphenated domain, register the unhyphenated version.

Example:
  • goodplumbing.co.nz
  • good-plumbing.co.nz

Adjoining letters variations

Check your domain name to see if there are any repeated adjoining letters that might confuse – such as when the first word ends with an ‘s’ and the second word begins with an ‘s’.

Example:
  • accesssolutions.co.nz
  • accessolutions.co.nz

Register a domain name for your business and your product

For example, your business is called Good Plumbing and your product is called Drain Stopper.

  • goodplumbing.co.nz
  • drainstopper.co.nz

Think about US spelling vs. UK spelling

Examples:
  • maximiseyoursales.co.nz
  • maximizeyoursales.co.nz

Always, always register your company name

If your official company name is Good Plumbing, but you’re planning to use theplumbingstore.co.nz, register both names.

Examples:
  • goodplumbing.co.nz
  • theplumbingstore.co.nz

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