While you have designed a stunning website on your favorite website builder, this will not have the desired positive impact to viewers if your site has a default domain name.
For example, non custom domain names include .wixsite or .squarespace, and this instantly deteriorates an audience’s view of your brand.
A custom domain name (i.e. yourname.com) is essential for all creatives who are serious about attracting and retaining a large audience to their website.
While the concept of picking and implementing a custom domain can seem overwhelming, this article will help teach you everything you need to know!
Why do you need a custom domain?
Brand Identity: To establish a sense of brand identity, creating a custom domain is of major importance. Visitors to your website are expecting your domain name to match or somewhat resemble your business. Take Riot Games for example, the creator of popular games League of Legends and Valorant, who has “riotgames” in their domain name.
Increased Discoverability: From using a custom domain, you will benefit from improved Search Engine Optimization (SEO). If your domain name describes your website accurately, you have an advantage at persuading Google and other browsers that your site is relevant to the topic searched. To add, Google consistently ranks domain names that still have the website builder’s extension such as .wix and .wordpress lower.
Credibility: Having a custom domain serves as an instant credibility boost. By having a website builder’s extension still in your domain name, you are presenting your business as unprofessional and lacking in reputation. The internet is a place full of misinformation and having a domain name that is directly associated with your business allows people to know that the website is legitimate.
What should your domain name be?
The benefit that comes with having your own custom domain name is the creative freedom when it comes to naming. However, to make the most out of your custom domain, it is recommended that you stick to the following guidelines.
- Keeping it short - A huge downside to having a long domain name is that it might be troublesome for people to remember and type out. According to a study, the optimal length of your domain name should be around 12-13 characters.
- A popular top level domain - Although it is more pricey, it is ideal to stick with a popular top level domain (TLD) like .com or .org as it helps raise a customer’s trust in your business. Buying your country’s specific TLD such as .ca, .uk also works. Think about it, if you were visiting a website that had a TLD you have never seen before, would you be comfortable trusting the business with your email and other personal details?
- Make it unique: Earlier, we mentioned how getting a custom domain helps with enhancing your personal brand and standing out from competition. Play around with abbreviations and your business name, it could make it easier for customers to remember your website.
How much does a domain name cost?
Buying a domain requires you to purchase them through a domain name registrar. These registrars are companies that manage and sell domain names. So how much does it cost to buy a domain name through these companies? The answer is that it varies depending on the TLD, second level and third level domain name. Below is a table that covers the prices for some of the most popular TLD’s.
However, it is important to know that the prices on the table above are all introductory prices. This means that every price seen on the table will increase during the second year. For instance, while you only pay $0.99 for a .com TLD for the first year at GoDaddy, this changed to $18.17 for the second year.
Some website builders like Jemi let you purchase and connect your domain directly in their website builder.
How to connect a custom domain to your website
At the cost of upgrading to a paid plan, most website builders allow you to connect a custom domain on their site . As an example , we will be using Jemi, an easy-to-use and free website builder.
If you are on Jemi’s Pro or Business plan you can purchase and connect your domain by heading to the “Website” tab located on the top right then clicking on “Domain Name & URL”. Here you have two options: You can connect an existing domain you already own or purchase a domain through Jemi.
To purchase and link a new domain on Jemi, select “Add new” and then you can search and purchase a domain.
To connect a domain name you already own, click on “Add existing”, paste the DNS records (can be found under “help” and the “data” section of the table) into the DNS settings of your domain provider. Connecting a custom domain can be done by replacing the host name with the desired subdomain name.
With this article, you should have a solid understanding of custom domains, why you need one and how to connect them to your website. Given the ease of use and low price, we highly suggest using Jemi to build your website and connect your custom domain.
Jemi has a special domain offer where if you sign up for their pro or business plans, you will get a free custom domain. As long as the TLD is less than $20, the custom domain is free for a year. Get started with a free Jemi account today here.
If you need further assistance or have questions on setting up your domain on Jemi, feel free to use our help center here or reach out at email@example.com.