As a Domain Broker, I get told regularly that “domain names don’t matter. It’s all about Google these days”. This is usually said by someone in the market for a domain but doesn’t feel like paying more than $50 for it. One of the most important parts of my job is education – ensuring the potential buyer is aware of the metrics involved in valuing a domain name and why those metrics are important. It’s about getting them to understand the value of a memorable domain for their business. But alas, some simply don’t want to know and we respectfully end our discussions.

Let me tell you a story from my personal experience that highlights the importance of having a memorable domain name.

From Jamaica to The UK

I have been very fortunate to live and work in some amazing places in the world. As a Jamaican, most of the places I’ve called home have been warm and sunny. But having an English wife, I knew the day would come when we would move to the UK. That day came last summer when after 8 years in the Cayman Islands, my wife and I moved across the Atlantic to be closer to her family and to broaden our kids’ horizons. One of the more interesting parts of settling into life in the UK was having to get a driver’s license (unfortunately, my driver’s licenses from Jamaica, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and the Cayman Islands were not convertible to a UK license).

Gearing Up For The Driver’s Test

Taking a driver’s test after 25 years of driving was a daunting but necessary task. So, I started researching what was required. First, I had to take a theory test comprised of multiple-choice questions and a hazard perception simulation. Second, I had to pass the practical driving test. To prepare me for the theory test, I wanted to brush up on the questions that would be asked. I looked for a site to help me and I easily found one through a popular discount site, so I signed up. I tested out the site, but since I couldn’t take the test until I had been resident for 6 months, I put it aside until closer to the time I could take the test.

“Wait, What Was the Name of That Website?”

Here is where my issue began. When it came time to practice for the test, I couldn’t remember the company or the site name. I tried Googling it, but all the results looked the same. They all contained the same three or four keywords in different orders, passyourtheorytest, theorytestpass, and passtheorytestand all jumbled together. I couldn’t find the site without going to my email to find the confirmation from months previous, and even then I had to type keywords to bring it up.

Bottom Line

In the end, I was able to find the company through my email confirmation. I was able to study and pass my test, and the product was decent. However, the customer experience was terrible because I had to waste my time and jump through hoops to find their website. And most importantly, if I wanted to recommend them to someone else who was in a similar situation, I couldn’t. Not because their product is bad, but because I can’t remember their name!

This was a real eye-opening experience. It was clear that this company invested in their product, and invested in the look and feel of their site. But they didn’t buy a web domain that would make them stand out from the crowd. Instead of having a domain name that would help potential and current customers find them, they rely on buying traffic from search engines and discount sites. This reliance on third parties is a monthly expense that is now required for their survival without a decent domain.

My advice is simple. Think very carefully about your company name and your domain name to make sure customers can find you.

If I can help with that, please let me know at rob@saw.com (one of the easiest emails to remember!) and I can let you know about our domain broker service – even if your preferred domain name is taken, we can help acquire it or suggest a suitable alternative.