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 Hyphenated Domain Names And Similar Issues 
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Post Hyphenated Domain Names And Similar Issues
Hyphenated Domain Names And Similar Issues
by: George Meszaros



Due to the explosive demand for domain names it is becoming increasingly difficult to get short meaningful web addresses. Chances are you are going to have to make some compromises when registering your domain name. If you manage to get a short domain name that is meaningful, easy to remember, sounds good, and simple to spell consider yourself very fortunate.

An additional advantage of longer domain names is that they are more room for your keywords. Long domain names that have your site keywords in them also have an advantage in that they fare better in a number of search engines. The latter give preference to keywords that are also found in your domain names. So, for example, if you have a site on San Diego Weddings with a domain name like sandiegoweddingadvicedotcom, it might fare better in a search for "San Diego Wedding Advice" than another site, gethitchedinthesundotcom.

For the most part, I would discourage the use of hyphenated domain names. Most importantly, it's easy to forget the hyphens when typing a name. Many users are used to typing things like partyandweddingfavors.com but not party-and-wedding-favorsdotcom. Chances are people typing in your domain name will leave out the hyphens giving their business to your competitor.

When people refer your site to others verbally, having hyphens in your domain name leads to more potential errors than when the name does not contain hyphens. For example, how do you think your visitors will refer to your site if it is named "party-and-wedding-favorsdotcom"? They might say, "I visited Party and Wedding Favors dot com yesterday. It is such a great site, you should check it out”. The referred person, remembering that comment later, might type into their browsers "partyandweddingfavors.com". Oops.

Hyphenated domain names are difficult to type. Who wants to insert a hyphen between each word just to get the proper domain name? It is simply too much work.

On the plus side, search engines may reward your site with better results due to the hyphen-separated words. Thus positioning your site more favorably in search results for those keywords occurring in your domain name. If the non-hyphenated form is no longer available at least you can get the next best thing.


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George Meszaros with Webene http://www.webene.com


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Wed Aug 01, 2007 1:52 pm
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