New to the Team: Art Enke

Meet Art!

Hey everyone! We’d like you to meet the latest addition to the Name.com team, Art Enke. Art is going to be our Business Development Manager and he brings a lot of experience along with him.

We snagged Art away from Intuit (sorry guys) where he spent three years wearing many hats (tech support, sales, SEO, design services) after they acquired Homestead.com. Prior to working at Intuit, he built up and sold a successful eBay business that he managed for several years.

A true Coloradoan, Art graduated from Colorado State University and loves mountain biking, camping, and water skiing in addition to SEO and web design. Sorry ladies, he’s married and has three wonderful kids. 😉

We’re very excited to have Art on board and we hope you’ll join us in giving him a warm welcome!

Name.com is Growing, Check Out Our New Office Space!

New Name.com Office from Name.com on Vimeo.

We’re very excited to show you guys a sneak peek at our new office space! Our current office has served us well for the past few years, but we’re happy to say that we’ve outgrown this space and it’s time to move to an office that can handle this and future growth. There’s a lot of demolition that needs to be done at the new place, so we won’t be moving until closer to the end of the year.

Here’s a look at our current office:

Old Office

Old Office

Old Office

Old Office

And here’s what our new office looks like (pre-demolition):

New Office

New Office

New Office

New Office

This new space is a lot bigger and actually used to be a gym; almost everything in the middle including closets, showers, hot tub (sniffles), etc. will be torn down so you’ll be able to see clearly from one end to the other. Even though we’re moving, we want to make sure we keep the open and creative feeling of our current office.

It’s an exciting time at Name.com and we look forward to showing you more as things progress with the new office!

$19.99 .MX Sale!

That’s right folks! Starting now and running until the end of the month (9/30), we will have .MX registrations for the super low price of $19.99!

While .MX is the ccTLD for Mexico, there are no restrictions on registrations, so anyone can register a .MX domain. For a few more details about the extension, check out our info page.

Podcast Episode #1: Support at Name.com

Length: 19:28

We’ve decided to take a stab at podcasting and we’re starting things off with an episode that gives an overview of what support is like here at Name.com. We had fun making it and it was a good learning experience. Mostly we learned that we need to keep it a little shorter, as 19 minutes even tests our own attention spans.

We hope you enjoy, and keep an eye out for more podcasts from us! They’ll be shorter, we promise. 😉

Domain Nabber Now Supports .MOBI!

We’re excited to announce that .MOBI is now one of the extensions we support with our Domain Nabber backorder service! This is just part of our continued efforts to help you get the domain names that you want.

There are a couple of different ways you can take advantage of this new feature.

If you want to pick and choose your .MOBI domains from a list of expired names that have dropped, you can check out our Domain Nabber page where you can fill out the criteria that you want.

But if you have something specific in mind, you can just do a regular search for that name and place your backorder directly from our search page.

As you can see, backorders for .MOBI run $39.95 and, as always, if you don’t get the name or you decide to cancel your order, you will receive a full refund.

2010 .INFO Awards!

This year marks Afilias’ 4th Annual .INFO Awards, a program seeking to name the “Best .INFO Website of 2010!”

While .COM, .NET, .ORG, and a few other domains were the early players in the domain game, .INFO came onto the scene strong in 2001 when ICANN approved more top-level domains (TLDs). Afilias is the registry for .INFO and they act as the man behind the curtain, making sure all the .INFOs out there are working.

In the last 9 years, .INFO has grown to over 6 million domains and millions of live websites, which means there will be plenty of competition for this year’s awards. Competition you can take a look at in Afilias’ .INFO directory. Submitted sites will be reviewed by experts in web design and media and they will choose the 10 best sites for the public to vote on. There are cash prizes for the top 3 sites with the winner getting a whopping $7500!

If you’ve developed a .INFO site and you’d like to submit it to the .INFO Awards, you can do so here. You’ll have to act fast though, submissions end September 10!

Don’t have a .INFO site? You can still participate when voting opens on October 5, and one lucky voter will even win an iPad! Gee Afilias, twist our arms why don’t you. 😉

September Promo!

Another month, another great promo! For the month of September we are offering $8.49 .COM & .NET registrations with the code FALLTIME10 . This code will be valid on one-year registrations until Thursday 9/30.

Don’t forget we have a few other sweet deals going on (no promo code required):

  • $6.99 .IM registrations and renewals
  • $3.99 .US registrations
  • $10.99 .TV registrations

Choosing a Good Domain Name

You’ve decided you want to start a website, either for your business or a personal site. Now what do you do? If you guessed that finding a good domain name was at the top of the list, you’d be correct. This process can be somewhat daunting, so we’ve come up with a list of guidelines to help you pick a good domain.

Generic vs. Branding

Generic domain names are usually dictionary words with a broad range of applications, e.g., Books.com, Coffee.com, Golf.com, and so on. Generic domain names are great because they can lead to direct navigation traffic. This means that people in search of these specific things can bypass search engines entirely. These generic names are often very expensive.

But if you’re an everyday Joe looking to build your personal or company brand, choosing a domain name that matches your brand is the way to go. This not only increases your branding, but it will make it easier for your visitors to remember your name. Your brand is also what sets you apart from everybody else, so having a unique domain name that matches your brand will do the same for your website.

Just think if youtube.com went with something like streamingvideo.com. Not very memorable is it?

Hyphens Begone

In researching what others have said on this topic, I came across my new favorite domain name:

http://www.the-name-i-wanted-was-already-taken-so-i-used-a-lot-of-dashes.com/

Sure, it’s a little snarky, but it gets the point across. You want to avoid using a hyphen in your domain name if you can. It might be slightly better for SEO, but it doesn’t look very good and it can make your domain name harder to remember. It’s also harder for someone to verbally recommend your website if there are one or more hyphens in the domain name.

Keep It Short and Simple

Get creative! Try using two really good keywords; three or four if you must. Once you start using five or more keywords things can get a little ugly. Again, you want your visitors to remember your domain name, so you want it to be as easy as possible to type.

However, keeping it short doesn’t mean you should resort to acronyms, especially if those letters spell anything funky.

You also want to be conscious of using keywords that share the same first and last letter, like hattricks.com or doggroomers.com. Sometimes you may not have a choice, but be aware that those double letters can be confusing.

Embrace Alternate Extensions

Despite what some domain purists may tell you, alternate extensions are your friend. In a world where most of the good .COM domains are already registered there are plenty of other options available to you.

  • Have your own video production company? Try using companyname.tv.
  • For a personal blog or resume site you might try using .ME or .IM to add a personal touch.
  • Non-profit? You might go with a .ORG domain.
  • If your business is only based in a specific country, why not use that country’s ccTLD (.US, .MX, .CA) to represent your business?

When it comes to alternate extensions you want to try and avoid using what are called domain “hacks”. This is when you use the domain extension to complete a word in your domain name. Sure they look pretty clever, but they don’t do much for you in the “easy to remember” category. Some examples of hacks would be: aweso.me, ilovefrenchfri.es, ridiculo.us, etc. There’s a reason delicious.com switched from del.icio.us, nobody could remember where the heck the dots went!

Be Careful With Trademarks

To quote Elmer Fudd “Be vewy, vewy careful.” Trademarks are no laughing matter and if you register a trademarked name, you can bet that the lawyers will be after you.

Check Your Spelling

It’s always a good idea to double, or even triple check your domain spelling before hitting that purchase button. Sometimes you think you’re getting a steal, but upon a second glance you realize you just registered pronnight.com instead of promnight.com. Doh!

The moral of the story is to get creative with your domain name. You want something that is unique, simple, and memorable. But remember, be careful not to step on any trademarked toes and always check your spelling!

Name.com Homepage Gets a Facelift!

Okay, so maybe it’s not a full facelift, but we did smooth out a few wrinkles and clean up a few blotches. Now the homepage is looking nice and refreshed!

We’re currently testing a couple different versions of this page, so the one that you come across may not look like the screenshot above, it may look like this:

If you get this page, nothing is wrong, it’s very intentional. At least that’s our story and we’re sticking to it. 😉

Naturally, the most important part of this is your feedback. So far the response has been really positive, which we’ll admit is a nice ego boost, but we’ve also received some good constructive criticism.

What are your thoughts? Do you like the new direction? Dislike? Why? We’d love to hear from you!