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How many and which domains should I buy now?

Posted on Monday, April 30, 2018 by Julia O'Reilly

Should I buy .com, or get all the extensions?

These are questions I receive often from my clients.  If you're asking, you're not alone.

Here are some thoughts to help you decide.

My general working principle is this: your best investment for a domain is one domain that is easy to spell, easy to say, and is a .com domain (no .net, .us, .org or other extension).

That said, there are instances in which you might be better off investing in some of the other TLD’s for your site.  (TLD = top level domains.  These domains sit at the root of a website, and are identified by extension:  .com, .net, .us, .org and so on.)

Multiple domains, one website
Buying multiple domain names and pointing them all to your website is a common practice.

Yes, you can point multiple domains to your website main domain. The best way to do this is to use a URL Forward or Forwarding or Redirection order or whatever your registrar calls it.

The procedure is relatively simple to implement (depending on which method you use), but it's important to take precautions so that you do not lose search engine ranking unnecessarily.  

If you're uncertain

Get your main domain handled first. 

You’ll get the best registrar pricing if you purchase your best domain for 5 or 10 years.  Most registrars offer 1 year, then multiple year increments for a better price.After your main domain is registered, buy the other contenders for a year or so while you experiment and monitor results. Point these domains to your main website domain.  

A good webhosting service will provide you with extensive analytics, or you can find a 3rd party service like Google Analytics for reports to tell you how much traffic is coming to which URL (domain). This can inform your decision to renew a secondary domain or not.

Buy as many as you can easily afford, and that you can afford to maintain and market to.  There’s no return on investment for a URL that sits quietly parked, unless you’re in the business of buying and selling domains.  (Domain investing is a robust and thriving industry, we’re just not discussing it in this post.)

Ask yourself why you're budgeting for more domains, what is your goal and your net gain?  

Do you simply want to tie up the domain so no one else can buy it?  Perhaps so, if you think your visibility will be high enough to warrant the purchase and protection.  While I don’t encourage anyone to make an investment based on fear, there are domain squatters who scout for isolated .com registrations and buy the .net or .org or other TLD that is an exact match.  The ROI for these investors depends on traffic, and other considerations, including their perception of the popularity and attractiveness of your domain. Your website may not be heavily trafficked at first, and the risk may not be that high.  Evaluate that cost against your budget.

Do you want to expand the possibilities that someone might type .org, .net or .info to search specifically for you, if they don't find you at a .com? (Hint: this is probably not a compelling reason to invest.  I mean, really, do you often duplicate searches using other extensions when you're looking for someone or for a service or product?  For me, that answer is no.  Sometimes, but not often.)  Weigh your costs against the possible return.  If you can easily afford the expense, it may be worth a trial year to observe the analytics, and see if anyone is searching for you or your services, products or type of business at those TLD's.

.mobi

Do you want the cool factor and the bleeding technology edge that a .mobi currently offers?  The .mobi extension is typically reserved for mobile device site development, and you have to develop an alternate mobile site to take fullest advantage of it.  

If you think you may want to do this down the road, yes, you should grab it as soon as you can.  The .mobi domain has a definite 'cool' factor, has greater credibility and implies that you are serious about your business, and is likely the wave of the future.  

.mobi is also better for SEO and domain ranking.  More browsing is happening on mobile devices as of this writing than on any other platform.  

More on how to pick a great domain name later.  For now, thanks for stopping in.

read more
user

How many and which domains should I buy?

Posted on Monday, April 30, 2018 by Julia O'Reilly

Should I buy .com, or get all the extensions?

These are questions I receive often from my clients.  If you're asking, you're not alone.

Here are some thoughts to help you decide.

My general working principle is this: your best investment for a domain is one domain that is easy to spell, easy to say, and is a .com domain (no .net, .us, .org or other extension).

That said, there are instances in which you might be better off investing in some of the other TLD’s for your site.  (TLD = top level domains.  These domains sit at the root of a website, and are identified by extension:  .com, .net, .us, .org and so on.)

Multiple domains, one website
Buying multiple domain names and pointing them all to your website is a common practice.

Yes, you can point multiple domains to your website main domain. The best way to do this is to use a URL Forward or Forwarding or Redirection order or whatever your registrar calls it.

The procedure is relatively simple to implement (depending on which method you use), but it's important to take precautions so that you do not lose search engine ranking unnecessarily.  

If you're uncertain

Get your main domain handled first. 

You’ll get the best registrar pricing if you purchase your best domain for 5 or 10 years.  Most registrars offer 1 year, then multiple year increments for a better price.After your main domain is registered, buy the other contenders for a year or so while you experiment and monitor results. Point these domains to your main website domain.  

A good webhosting service will provide you with extensive analytics, or you can find a 3rd party service like Google Analytics for reports to tell you how much traffic is coming to which URL (domain). This can inform your decision to renew a secondary domain or not.

Buy as many as you can easily afford, and that you can afford to maintain and market to.  There’s no return on investment for a URL that sits quietly parked, unless you’re in the business of buying and selling domains.  (Domain investing is a robust and thriving industry, we’re just not discussing it in this post.)

Ask yourself why you're budgeting for more domains, what is your goal and your net gain?  

Do you simply want to tie up the domain so no one else can buy it?  Perhaps so, if you think your visibility will be high enough to warrant the purchase and protection.  While I don’t encourage anyone to make an investment based on fear, there are domain squatters who scout for isolated .com registrations and buy the .net or .org or other TLD that is an exact match.  The ROI for these investors depends on traffic, and other considerations, including their perception of the popularity and attractiveness of your domain. Your website may not be heavily trafficked at first, and the risk may not be that high.  Evaluate that cost against your budget.

Do you want to expand the possibilities that someone might type .org, .net or .info to search specifically for you, if they don't find you at a .com? (Hint: this is probably not a compelling reason to invest.  I mean, really, do you often duplicate searches using other extensions when you're looking for someone or for a service or product?  For me, that answer is no.  Sometimes, but not often.)  Weigh your costs against the possible return.  If you can easily afford the expense, it may be worth a trial year to observe the analytics, and see if anyone is searching for you or your services, products or type of business at those TLD's.

.mobi

Do you want the cool factor and the bleeding technology edge that a .mobi currently offers?  The .mobi extension is typically reserved for mobile device site development, and you have to develop an alternate mobile site to take fullest advantage of it.  

If you think you may want to do this down the road, yes, you should grab it as soon as you can.  The .mobi domain has a definite 'cool' factor, has greater credibility and implies that you are serious about your business, and is likely the wave of the future.  

.mobi is also better for SEO and domain ranking.  More browsing is happening on mobile devices as of this writing than on any other platform.  

More on how to pick a great domain name later.  For now, thanks for stopping in.

read more
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Making Color Work

Posted on Thursday, March 22, 2018 by Julia O'Reilly

Color    Color     Color    Color    Color

I'm often asked about color - or more to the point, people want to know how to make a color decision.

It's a jungle out there. 

Good News

It's a really fun, colorful jungle, and there is a system.

OK, I’m a self-confessed color theory geek.  I started early when I’d break my crayons into different sizes, peel off the labels and spend hours arranging the pieces of pure color in different patterns. I might have been a strange kid, sure, but it worked for me.

I still live, study and play in the color jungle, scrutinize how it works, why.  I can wear down anyone at a party over the topic.
 
Anyway, that’s all about me. Back to you. What if what you need right now is the right color used the right way for your project (or anything else), and your background isn't Color Theory?

More Good News and Two Easy Color Rules

  1. Selecting color is a visual problem, and it begs a visual solution. 
  2. We perceive color in relationship to other colors.  For the best professional results, designers use palettes of a limited selection of colors grouped for a particular effect or purpose.

Happily, there are some excellent online tools to help you see color and create your own palette.  Here are a few good tools to get you started.


An interactive color wheel gives you instant combinations based on a color you select.

Adobe Color CC

I selected a dark de-saturated green, in Shades color rule.  (The closer the selected color is to the center, the less color, or saturation, it has.) 

The chart displays the RGB values or HEX values for each square of color, which you can give to your designer, web or app developer or print vendor, to be sure of a good match.

Here, the same Shades color rule displays a more saturated green combination.

Selecting the Complementary color rule, the picker gives you the exact complement (opposite) of the green on the color wheel, which is a dark red.  Now the tool creates a whole new spread of colors.

 


A different type of interactive color wheel lets you spin out color combinations quickly.

Paletton



Compare the colors you selected to an accurate reference source like a Pantone™ book.

ColorMunki




To match the color you see on your screen for printing, ColorMunki will provide exact Pantone™ color book swatches.  You can grab the hexadecimal values to provide the best match for anything on a screen.


See how someone else combined colors, for inspiration.

Canva

Canva is a fun and useful "everything-you-need-to-know-about-color" design wiki.  You can search for a descriptive color name or select a color square right from the page.

 

Go to an information page that's all about the single color you selected.

 

Find interesting combinations preassembled!

You'll find inspirational tools on Canva too, and a palette generator that will kick out color combos from your uploaded photo. 

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