In This Chapter
• How the domain name system works
• Internet-friendly business names and slogans
• Search terms and keywords
• Domain names and how to get them
In the physical world, location is everything, whether you're opening a restaurant, bookstore, or auto shop. Translating the importance of location into the online world is a bit more tricky, because on the World Wide Web, every website, from the most elaborate to the most humble, is just a few mouse clicks away.
The online version of scarce real estate is unquestionably the ubiquitous little one- or two-word phrases that appear in print ads, on TV and billboards, and even on the cover of this very book. They are domain names, and they're the lingua franca of the online world.
Tip: Short, Pronounceable and Memorable. Those are the three key metrics for what makes a good domain name.
A decade ago, when commerce was just starting on the web, domain names were plentiful and companies competed for a coveted dotcom domain. Indeed, the late 1990s investment frenzy and subsequent collapse of thousands of Internet-related startups takes its name from this class of domain names: the dotcom crash.
Today there are dozens of top-level domains available for online businesses, a growth that's somewhat akin to waking up one morning and finding that there are new shopping malls on every side of the mall you just paid a premium to locate your store within.
But are all domain names the same? How does the domain name system work, anyway? And what can you do if the domain you want is already taken? In this chapter, I will explain exactly how the domain name system works, discuss the evolution of domain names, and talk about what makes a great domain different from a good one, and which type of domain names to avoid completely.
Inside The Book