What is a domain?
A domain is an internet address of a website. It directs and allows you to access the IP address of a particular website. An IP address is a string of 15 numerical characters used to identify a network on the internet. For example, the IP address of Google is 126.96.36.199. It is difficult to remember the IP address of each website without a domain.
For example, the domain name of CloudFiles is ‘cloudfiles.io.’ The domain name is often confused with URL. URL is a complete address of a webpage on a website, whereas a domain is a human-friendly form of an IP address. The domain is a subpart of the URL.
Typing a domain name in the search bar takes you to the particular website you are searching for. Hence, the domain is a simple, user-friendly text alternative to a website’s IP address that allows you to access the website.
How does domain reflect a brand?
A domain is a web replica of your brand. It distinguishes your customers' perception of your brand against your competitors and sets a tone for your web presence.
A brand domain decides whether you create a successful web presence or get lost in the crowded web market. It improves your brand recognition and credibility. It eases the search process for your customers and encourages them to engage with your brand more.
The right domain sets your brand apart. Do you remember Google and Twitter, when they were google.standford.edu and twttr.com? There is a reason no one remembers them. They were not clear, memorable, catchy, concise, easy, user-friendly, and reflecting the brand.
SEO is a critical web aspect that enhances your web discoverability. Hence, choosing a brand-reflective, SEO-friendly, and user-friendly is essential to boost your website’s ranking.
When should you change your domain name?
When you are rebranding
Are you rebranding for better market positioning? Then the first thing you should do is change your domain name. Choosing a brand domain that explains your brand, products, or services is a wise move.
For example, Twitter became an instant social media success after its domain name was changed from twttr.com to Twitter.
It is not user-friendly or SEO-friendly
Does your domain name have numbers or hyphens? Then it is not user-friendly. Domain names should be crisp, memorable, and short. Shifting to an SEO-friendly domain helps you with a good authority score and climb up the SERP’s ladder (Search Engine Results Page).
Your domain doesn’t reverberate your brand’s tone.
Are you utilizing your full branding potential with your domain name? Your domain name should reflect your brand’s personality and identity. If your domain doesn’t align with your brand, it impacts your site’s traffic and confuses the visitors. Choosing a meaningful brand domain boosts your traffic and search rankings.
Do you have multiple websites with different domain names? You might want to amalgamate your multiple domains with similar content or purpose. However, be careful with your decision because changing the domain name can hurt your traffic and rankings.
To change domain extension
A domain extension is a suffix of the domain name. For example, ‘.io’ is the domain extension of the domain ‘cloudfiles.io.’ Maybe you were unaware of your niche-specific domain extensions or didn’t find one in your budget. You can always change your domain to a better domain extension.
Risks associated with changing your domain name
Domain migration can sometimes go disastrous. A new domain without a website before has an authority score of zero. Older domains with websites may have a good authority score. By migrating to a new domain, you may compromise the already high-ranking website. It may take some time to recapture the lost traffic and rankings.
For example, Looka, earlier Logojoy, a logo and brand element designing platform, experienced a significant revenue loss after a botched rebranding. The rebranding and domain name change of Looka resulted in an 80% drop in its Google search traffic and lay off 80% of its company personnel.
You’ll lose your traffic and rankings
Google takes time to reindex and relearn your website from scratch. You may lose your previous rankings and traffic in the process. Although the drop in ranking and traffic is not an inevitable consequence, it is highly likely to happen.
Domain age may help you ward off this risk. Domain age is the lifespan of your website and is one of the significant SEO ranking factors. For example, a 3-year-old website holds leverage over the website with a domain age of 1 year.
It is recommended to keep your new domain active for some time before completely migrating. It ensures that you don’t migrate to an unrecognized domain. Although it is not a preventive measure, it may help you avert the risk.
It takes time and money.
Do not expect to divert your new domain overnight. Changing the domain takes a significant amount of time and money. Domain providers like Godaddy, wordpress, etc., are expensive; especially premium domain names are huge investments.
The process of changing your domain name may be short and simple. Yet, regaining your lost traffic and ranking need decent efforts, despite the migration.
Hence, until and unless there is a strong reason, restrain from changing your domain name just for the sake of it. Instead, you can invest your time and money in something more productive and important for your business.
Brand awareness and positioning
Lack of proper implementation might cost your brand’s reputation and awareness. Customers who visit your website frequently won’t know about your domain migration if you do not redirect your old visitors to your new site.
Even a brief absence without a redirect link is enough for your visitors to forget you. Hence, placing a 301 redirect link for at least 90 – 120 days on your old website can help. For that, you will have to pay for the old domain for an extended period. Also, the entire traffic may not be redirected.
Backlinks are active links to your website’s content on a third-party site. The domain name change will impact all your backlinks and SEO negatively. You can either place the redirect link for an indefinite period or reach out to them and request to change the links.
However, redirecting backlinks may not effectively contribute to your SEO rankings. Instead, you can devise a new and more effective backlink strategy.
Change the domain of your links for better brand outreach with Cloudfiles.io
Each day you lose many business opportunities by getting lost within a swarm of competitor emails. Building an authoritative domain can help you exemplify your brand for better brand outreach. CloudFiles assists you in changing the domains of your links and emails for targeted marketing and boosting your sales. It is easy and quick. Try it today for free.