Actually, this isn’t quite the case. There are lots of excellent letter and word combinations that would make for excellent domain names, but coming up with those names can be a real challenge.
Here at MUO, we’ve covered a number of excellent tools to search all domain names that can help with the process, such as Ted’s article listing 6 domain name generators and Saikat’s great article on 10 unusual domain name search tools you can use to come up with ideas. However, not many of these tools cover the two aspects of domain name research in one package – first, coming up with a name and second, finding matching unregistered domains.
Brainstorm Domain Names With Domain Seeker
Domain Seeker is a free software package offered by Springboard, a web services company. I love Domain Seeker because it will take you through the process from brainstorming domain name ideas right through to search all domain names and identifying your final available domain name.
When you first install and run Domain Seeker, you’ll discover a main screen that is segmented into five columns. These columns are high, mid and low profile domains, registered domains and saved domains.
The profile level of a domain is determined by the number of characters in the title. Titles with four or fewer characters are high (very valuable), between five and seven are mid profile, and eight or more are high profile. This is because the fewer characters in the domain name, the better visitors will remember the domain name.
High profile domains are very sought after by webmasters. The software focuses on the .com and .net top level domains (TLD), but if you go into Options -> Settings, you can add additional extensions by enabling them in the Extension table.
For .com and .net domains, DomainSeeker pings internic to determine whether domain names are registered. The software throttles back the ping rate so that you don’t get blocked by the server for excessive queries. If you do get pop-up errors from the server, you can increase the throttle to something higher than 25 milliseconds until the errors go away.
On the main page of DomainSeeker, a dropdown list next to “Search Type” provides the available search types. The ones we’re going to focus on are Browsing, Generating, and the Full Word List.
When you choose the “Browse” option, a new window opens where you can literally browse using several search engines, including some domain search engines like JustDropped or DeletedDomains. As you browse for the keywords that you’re interested in getting a domain for, the software automatically starts generating list of related registered and unregistered domain names.
Back on the main page, if you select the “Generate names” search option, a new search window opens that will help you brainstorm domain names based on the keyword that you’re interested in. This is my favorite tool within this software package, because of the volume of possible domains that the app generates. For example, I typed in “Droid” for examples of domains that I might use for a website about the Droid mobile phone, and the Domain Name Creator generated over 10,000 possibilities!
This is brainstorming at its finest. Domain Seeker then starts analyzing your list of potential domain names and sorts them on the main page under Registered, Low Profile, Mid Profile or High Profile. While landing a high profile domain name is quite rare, there are plenty of valuable mid profile domains to go around.
When you spot any available domain names that you like, just click and drag them into the “Saved Domains” column. Now, if you are starting from scratch and you don’t even know what website you want to create, but instead you’re looking for website ideas, you can choose “Full Word List” from the search type options. This feature will actually run through the entire list of words in the English language and search all available domain names, and then sort them by profile.
This is a very wide-ranging query that will take a very long time to complete, so if you have a more specific idea of the sort of genre that you’re interested in, a better option may be to use the “Custom List” search type. This is a very cool feature that runs through words in a text file and uses those words to conduct searches for available domains.
Existing lists that get installed with the DomainSeeker software include lists like movies, myths, common phrases and even all words in the dictionary. If you don’t see a list that you want, create a text file of your own filled with all of the keywords you can think of, and then save it in the “Wordlists” folder in the DomainSeeker application directory.
The software sifts through the text file, pings the WHOIS server for whether the domain is registered or not, and then sorts any unregistered domains within the appropriate profile column. DomainSeeker is, by far, one of the best desktop applications I’ve seen for brainstorming new website names and checking whether those domains are available.
Have you ever tried DomainSeeker? Do you like the domains that it comes up with? Do you have any domain name search tools that you like better? Share your insight in the comments section below.
Image Credit: Anna Maria Lopez