5 Tips for Finding Personal Domain Name Ideas You Can Be Proud Of
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Everyone wants a vanity URL. Today, a custom domain name based on your identity can be quite difficult to get hold of. But it’s not all over yet. You just have to bring out a sheet of paper and brainstorm a few creative domain name ideas that might be still available.

Before looking into domain names, you should evaluate web hosting options. We recommend WP Engine for WordPress sites because it’s reliable, secure, and frees you up to focus on your content. For non-managed web hosting, check out InMotion Hosting and Bluehost. Use these links for discounted hosting plans!

Once that’s squared away, use the simple methods below to find a personal domain name that you like (and that you can register).

Why You Should Get a Personal Domain Name?

Let’s get the easy stuff out of the way and first answer what is a domain name. Yes, that’s the thing you enter in the address bar to go to a website. Now, isn’t it easier to type a name can easily recall rather than falling back on a bookmark? Or, try to recollect if it was “johndoe.com” or “johndoe.wordpress.com”?

Easy of recollection is just of the reasons to find cool domain names that reflect your personality or your online work. Here are a few more:

  1. Your personal domain name is your calling card online.
  2. You can use the name for social branding across Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.
  3. Benefit from a personalized email address like yourname@yourdomain.com instead of a less unique Gmail address.
  4. Get the trust of your readers with a personalized blog domain name even if it is attached to a free web host.
  5. Getting a custom domain name is easy and cheap.

The only difficult part is thinking of creative domain name ideas that reflect you and your work online. Let’s get to it.

1. Use a Domain Name Tool or Two

Find available domain names with Domainr

Top-level domains get taken up with shocking speed. Even the most bizarre combinations of names and words (like “BarackObamaIsYourNewBicycle”) get registered on a regular basis.

You can still manage to finalize a domain with the help of tools like Domai.nr, which generates interesting combinations of names based on keywords you submit. The site also shows whether a particular domain is available for purchase.

NameStudio gives you prefixes and suffixes to combine with a keyword and come up with interesting combinations. Bust a Name will try to come up with words that sound natural.

Also, use a tool like NameChk or KnowEm to see if the domain name you have set your mind upon is available as a username on some of the most common social websites like Facebook or Twitter. That will help you use the same name across the Web and keep your identity consistent.

2. Take the Help of a Thesaurus

Use a thesaurus for domain name ideas

A dictionary or thesaurus can help you out when English isn’t your strong suit. A thesaurus can help to not only get the spelling right but also help you find lesser-known synonyms of the name you want to go with.

Try the excellent Thesaurus.com or even a reverse dictionary like OneLook to brainstorm a list of words you can play around with. The Visual Thesaurus is paid but the free search limit just might be enough to come up with a valuable related word.

Here’s an offbeat tip. Use ScrabbleFinder to find words that end with a specific set of alphabets. The Scrabble cheat engine allows the use of wildcards and also lists the words by length.

You can use it to come up with creative combinations, especially if you are looking for domain names with non-traditional gTLDs What URL Domain Extensions Stand For and Why They Are Needed What URL Domain Extensions Stand For and Why They Are Needed There's a lot more to the internet that just .com, .org, and .net sites. The world of top-level domains exploded a few years ago. But what is a TLD? Let's find out. Read More .

3. Think of a Brandable Blog Domain Name Idea

Get a great name for your business or startup with Namelix

A brandable domain name may not have any meaning. But ensure that it is fairly short and readable. If it’s easy to memorize, that’s a bonus. You can take inspiration from names like “Google”, “Uber”, and “Yahoo” that have no connection to what they actually do.

Artificial intelligence can help you generate catchy brandable domain names. These are easy on the ears and easier to type in the address bar. Be specific with keywords to create the right ones.

Pick tools like Namelix which uses AI. Others like Domainglo and Brandroot have their own search methods. Another site called DomainWheel uses rhymes to come up with creative words close to the one you enter.

Experiment with different combinations like Firstname, Lastname, Nickname, FirstinitialLastname, FirstnameLastinitial, NicknameLastname, NicknameLastinitial, etc.

Combine your name or an actual word with short unrelated word.

Leave out the quirky spellings, unnecessary multiple letters, etc. Such tweaks do seem to work for various companies and services (For example, IFTTT.com), but when used with personal domains, they only increase ambiguity and confusion.

4. Buy a Cheap Expired Domain Name

Buy cheap expired domain names with FreshDrop

Expired domain names are re-released after a grace period. Different registrars have different rules but the ballpark figure is around 75 days. Buying one of these domains can work to your advantage if the original domain was popular and generated much traffic when it was in use.

Domain marketplaces like FreshDrop, SnapNames, and a domain name search engine like Expired Domains are just some of the tools you can use to watch over the web.

There are also other domains that are advertised for sale. These can turn out to be expensive, but if you spend some time doing your research, you can find a fair deal on them. The important thing is to stay alert for opportunities that have a chance of giving you a nice, workable URL.

Here’s how you can spot and buy an expired domain name at the cheapest price How to Spot and Buy Expired Domains at the Cheapest Price How to Spot and Buy Expired Domains at the Cheapest Price Did you know that you can spot and buy expired domain names at cheap prices? Grab the right domain name for your site with these tips. Read More .

5. Get Creative With the Right Domain Extension

The .com top level domain still rules the SEO game. But with more than a billion websites, it is getting overcrowded and just too difficult to find a name that’s unique.

When the price of a domain name is a factor, you can do a lot with the other top level domain extensions. The non-traditional extensions are being used in clever ways by many startups and brands now.

Here are a few well-known examples:

  • bit.ly
  • visual.ly
  • home.barclays
  • postach.io
  • Redbrain.shop
  • Apple.news

Do check for existing trademarks before you settle on a name because it can lead to copyright problems in the future.

A Good Domain Name Is Important, But…

Don’t focus too much on getting that one SEO rich keyword. A creative domain name that is memorable is more valuable than a boring keyword heavy name any day.

Also, Google started de-ranking EMDs (Exact Match Domain Names) back in 2012. Google’s algorithms are powerful machine learning beasts that weed out spammy sites if they cannot deliver content that the user wants.

Instead of fretting over it, get a domain name you can be proud of and then direct your efforts toward putting up an appealing website and follow it up with interesting content. Building your own brand can take time, but it will pay off in the long run. And then, netizens will trace it back to you even without the help of the right domain name.

Keep these strategies in play and keep searching for the right domain name with these unusual domain name search tools 10 Effective Domain Name Search Tools and Domain Finders 10 Effective Domain Name Search Tools and Domain Finders Want to find an available domain name for your website? These domain search tools will help you find the right one quickly. Read More .

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  1. Kladproraba
    January 31, 2017 at 1:11 pm

    The question of how to choose the perfect domain name is really very important and relevant yesterday, today and tomorrow. What to do, how to choose – this question has already been answered. Enough information for the novice and the guru. But there are small details that simply missed. I want to share my experience with You to help You avoid mistakes when choosing a domain name.
    Experience, with the right choice of domain I bought in 2012 when I built my first website. At the time, I did not know about the importance of the issue and yet, I was lucky, I came up with a great domain name but realized it after a while.
    So, here are my recommendations.
    First: Relevant today, tomorrow loses its relevance. It is necessary to consider the moment You choose a domain name. Your domain should be universal. Universal domain, this is when You can easily change the direction of the resource to provide services, sell products, etc.
    Second, You came up with the name, then, write the name in the search bar of your browser and hit "search" if the search does not find a match – Your name is unique, which is very positive for the promotion of Your site.
    Only two, in my opinion, important, additional recommendations. I hope they will be useful.
    Sincerely, Kladproraba.com

  2. Martin
    December 19, 2016 at 1:07 pm

    Thank you for sharing your experience and thoughts.

    My suggestion is to be careful with .me and .co (and other country-code domains) domains because they are governed by Columbia and Montenegro, which means that some day something unexpected might happen. There has already been an accident with .co domain when all of the sites under this domain became inaccessible.

  3. sai kumar
    February 14, 2015 at 3:53 pm

    Akshata,

    Useful info, I have domain with my name since 8 years (saikumar.com) I used to get calls from fans of actor Sai Kumar, hold on I am not actor ;)

    Most of my friends ask me to buy them a domain like myself, but I couldn't find their names available, so I request you to give some ideas / hints to use as suffix/prefix.

    Thanks in advance.

    • Akshata
      February 16, 2015 at 2:32 pm

      Sai Kumar, how about using other popular suffixes like .co or .me? Maybe even .in or co.in if your friends are based in India.

  4. Kev Q
    January 15, 2014 at 11:37 am

    I'm quite lucky having a weird surname like "Quirk". It enabled me to grab kevquirk.com, but I also have kevquirk.co.uk and kevq.me for vanity URL's. I love domain names (it's my dirty pleasure), but I do think that everyone should have a good quality personal domain name. For instance mail@myname.com is much better than funky_biscuit_x1x@hotmail.com - imagine having that on your CV!

    I even have quirk.eu for when I start a family. :-)

    • Akshata
      January 15, 2014 at 5:16 pm

      I agree with you about the quality personal domain name thing. I love domain names too. I have more than I know what to do with (akshatashanbhag, thewriterista, shinesolo, thefootloosefreelancer).

      What a coincidence that you chose to comment on this post. While writing it, I had thought of using your domain name as an example for something (I don't remember for what exactly, but I think it was in reference to shortening firstnames/lastnames - I assumed Kev was short for Kevin).

  5. Andy Crofts
    January 8, 2014 at 10:55 pm

    Yep, but when you get one you like, DON'T drop it, esp. if it's a .com!
    I live in Oulu, Finland, and wanted a column about life here.
    Years ago I registered oululife.com.
    Somehow (OK, I cancelled a credit card I forgot I was using for automatic renewal) I didn't renew on time.
    It went as soon as some Chinese outfit could register it for 5 years.

  6. Sira Fredericks
    January 8, 2014 at 3:33 pm

    When I started my new business in 2010 I worked on some favorite names in concert with web searches for a URL. Working the two together helped me both name my new enterprise and get a desirable URL to match. It would have been much more difficult for me to have an established business name and then try to match it with a URL.

    • Akshata
      January 8, 2014 at 3:46 pm

      Sira, that sounds like the best way to go. Thanks for sharing that. I'm sure it'll help many others struggling to decide what to give top priority - the business name or the url.