Yesterday we talked about choosing a topic for your blog. Once you have your topic you will need to choose a domain. There are a few big mistakes that people make with this step. These mistakes include choosing a blog name that is different from their domain, using a free domain, using hard to remember abbreviations or hyphens, and using something other than a dot com (although dot org does work in some cases).
Choosing a domain that is different than your title is confusing for your readers. If a reader likes your blog then they will remember the title. If your domain name is different than that then they will not find it when they search. This is a common mistake because great titles are easy to come up with, but domain names are hard to come by. Find your domain name now, before you make your title so you do not make this mistake. I have included a link at the bottom of this post that will let you check availabilities of domain names.
Another common mistake is using a free domain. If you want to attract advertisers then you do not want a free domain because you will not look as professional (and readers will have a harder time searching for you if they do not realize you are on a free domain). Domains are cheap; you can purchase them for $10 or you can get a free domain with hosting. If you do become big and later decide to move from your free page to a real domain in the future you risk losing your google page rank. I switched to a paid domain after my blog was up and running. It was early enough that it wasn’t a huge deal, but if I could do it over I would have started with a paid domain from the get go. Make it easy on yourself and get the domain name from the very beginning.
One last thing; choose a domain name that is easy to remember! That means you will need to fight the urge to use things that people are not used to seeing or using on their keyboard. Things like hyphens and endings that are not dot com. Choose some keywords and begin searching for a domain name and title that works for you!
TASK: Spend some time searching available domain names. Pick one that you like and can also be used as the title of your blog. If you already have a blog and it is on a .blogspot domain then consider switching to a paid domain. You can do this by going to Settings – Publishing in your blogger account (it will cost $10)
Tomorrow we will discuss the different blogging platforms.
Make sure you sign up for the series giveaways and today you can gain an extra entry by posting about this series on your own blog. If you do this please leave a comment letting me know!