Category Archives: Mail Bag: Questions and Answers

Mail Bag Q&A: What domain should I pick and how does that effect SEO?

In this mail bag Q&A, we cover a question we get all the time, “what domain should I pick and how does that effect SEO?”

After we outline a few principles below, you’ll be ready to pick the perfect domain name for your business’s website.

Your Domain Name from a Branding Angle

When coming from a branding angle, it is important for it to be short, memorable, and easy to spell. This becomes even more important if there are TV or radio campaigns behind it where the domain has to be recalled by a prospective buyer and then type it into the browser address bar. While still important, you can loosen up these guidelines a tiny bit when it comes to print materials where the user may be able to refer back to the marketing piece to get the domain name.

Your Domain Name from a Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Angle

When coming from an SEO angle, you can get a small benefit from including keyword terms in your domain name (i.e., it is 1 of over 200 ranking factors used by Google). However, if you’re doing the right sorts of digital promotion where you’re getting relevant back links from other websites and mentions on social networks, a normal “branded” style domain name will rank just fine. As a matter of fact, Google prefers brands.

Does it matter if I use .COM or a different extension like .NET, .TV, .IO, or .whatever?

Generally, .COM is recognized as the premiere domain name. It is more legitimate looking than some of the 3rd party domain names because it is the most commonly used domain name by big brands with the most exposure. From an SEO perspective, it doesn’t really matter what domain extension you use because ranking in the search engines mainly comes down to relevant back links pointing to a site with high quality, relevant information. If you were only hoping to be found via search engines for something like the-keyword-i-want-to-rank-for.tv, it might be a hair stronger than just simply yourbrand.com or yourbrand.tv. This is splitting hairs though on a very small factor (and you can actually get burned with exact match domain names if your content quality is poor so make sure you find the right balance).

How to Pick a Domain Name for a Business in Practice

In the end, out in the real world, Clicked Studios prefers a well branded domain name supported by a solid search engine marketing campaign that builds a strong foundation of signals (links, social mentions, and citations) that Google wants to see from a reputable website worthy of ranking in the first spot. Sometimes when you cannot get a domain name you want, look to what BaseCRM did for their website. Get creative and stick an action word on your brand name such as “get” and you’ll get a domain name like “getBase.com”. The domain as a result is easy to remember and action oriented. Combined with strong digital promotion, the domain has a strong foundation of relevant back links propelling them to the top of Google for “mobile CRM software” despite using none of those words in their domain name. A quick look on Compete and you’ll see that their estimated traffic is between 50,000 to 250,000 per month. Not bad for a domain name lacking exact match keywords. 🙂

Mail Bag Q&A: How do I make my website accessible for visually impaired individuals?

In this this mail bag Q&A, a person who runs a company focused on senior home care asked, “how do I make my website accessible for visually impaired individuals?”

People with visual impairments may use screen readers to listen to a website’s content instead of trying to read it. It is important to make sure text is presented within the code instead of images and special components as much as possible. Should text be saved in an image or video, one step to provide accessibility is to provide a transcript. Additionally, since a visually impaired user may not be able to see images, it is important to use ALT tag in the code so that a description of that image can be provided for a screen reader. Another major accessibility concern is making sure links are clearly labeled so that a user knows where the link leads. For example, clearly label a link as the name of the page it should link to instead of using words like “click here” or “click this”.

Generally, the majority of accessibility relies on the group or individuals responsible for creating content to create duplicate versions of content that are accessible. For example, if creating an image or video, there needs to be a text or audio version available as well. Here’s a checklist of general accessibility guidelines provided by the W3 Consortium, an international community where Member organizations, a full-time staff, and the public work together to develop Web standards.

Mail Bag Q&A: How do you create an easy to use website?

In this Q&A, we have a question from a person wanting to know, “how do I create an easy to use website?

Creating simple and easy to use websites is built upon a concept called Hick’s Law. It states that the more choices you give a person, the longer and less likely that person is to make the choice you desire him to make. With that idea in hand, an easy to use website minimizes the number of choices you give a person at any given time in the navigation of the website. In order to achieve this, one must decide what messages and actions are the most important ones to them for display on the website. Sorting these messages and actions by level of priority in relation to one’s business objectives is the best way to figure out how to design a website. An easy way to think about this is with the concept of lead generation web pages with high conversion rates. The best ones historically have shown to use very limited navigation elements, if any at all, combined with a large bold message and minimal form elements to collect a prospect’s information. Another easy and recognizable example is Google.com. It’s core objective is to get people to search, so they present a very clean and minimal user interface with the search text field boldly placed in the center of the web page.