Website names - what and why

The website name or url is the '' that you type into your browser in order to visit that particular website.

Every website must have a unique name. There cannot be two ''s for example!

A bad name for your site can really hurt you, so a good name for your website is really important!

Bad website names

Lets start off by consider some pitfalls that you should avoid...

Cheap names

If you are a company or a professional, then you almost certainly should have your own address, ''. This will cost a few pounds, but pounds well spent. Don't look cheap by going for those offers where your name is just part of a greater whole, e.g. ''.

Poor Names

Poor website names are verbose, long or difficult to spell, even if they are 'correct'. is not good, though it is certainly specific!

Stupid or unintended names

Some sites names look stupid when you see them, even if they sound ok. The human eye/brain is very good at picking up patterns in backgrounds - even if those patterns are not intended.

For example, lets take the 'department of red tape'. This might have the url '' - to my eyes this looks as if it should read 'dep to fred tape'.

Another example; the BBC has a priceless url for their series 'Power of Art'. '' - indeed as they so aptly say - 'In Power Of Art, Schama returns to the intense moment of the work's original creation ...'. I guess that must have been about Damien Hurst then.

So - look carefully at your proposed name to see if there are unfortunate ellisions - it could save you from a world of grief!

Don't copy!

Dont even think about trying to go for rip-offs of big companies in the hope that you will pick up visitors by misspellings! This is known as 'typo-squatting' or 'cyber squatting'.

So or are not clever ideas. They make you look look cheap and clueless or nasty (it's used by porn spammers to capitalise on childrens misspellings) and in the worst case might get you a visit from the lawyers [see this bbc article on Microsoft and cyber squatters, or this one by McAfee on Typo-Squatting].

Good Names

Good website names are pithy, short & easy to spell, recognizable. One of my favourites is for - a wine discussion site - though it might be said that this could be misspelled easily, and you could end up at - quite a different site.

How to signup

If you dont already have a url, then please have a chat with us. It is easy to find out what names are still available, and we are happy to suggest suitable options.

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