How Does Domain Name Spelling Affect Your Business?
Having an easy-to-spell business name is more important than ever because we live in an era where people are searching for your brand on their phones or by typing in your domain in their browsers. After all, the last thing you want for your customers to make them feel like they're competing in the final round of a spelling bee every time they're looking you up. Choose carefully!
When looking at spelling, consider the following:
Sound vs Spelling
Your name should be easy that when people hear it out, they wouldn’t stuck at how it spells.
Words, or combinations of words that can be confused with other words.
MarketHear - When said out loud, could sound like "MarketHere" or "Marketier" or "MarketEar".
Names consisting of words that have multiple spellings:
Discreet vs discrete – having two different spellings of the same word
Letters that sound the same.
Carqumo - Uses both q and c, with same sound.
Some letter combinations just don't fit well together it makes the name hard to pronounce or feel unnatural. this applies mostly to invented names like plaid and plaid
Let’s take an example of few letter combinations are almost always a no-go, such as:
Xk, Nm. Xz, Qd, Bm, Vb, Bv
For some letter combinations, whether they work or not depends on their placement in a name.
Lrang.com --- at the beginning of the name Lr combination is awkward to pronounce.
Ranglr.com --- Here the Lr combination works, because it is at the end of the name.
Letter combinations can also be problematic when they violate English spelling rules. For native English speaker, it will probably be obvious to hear a letter combination doesn't work in a name. For non-native English speakers, you should make sure to run your name by an English speaker! For more English spelling rules, checkout this great resource.
Rule violated: Q is always followed by a u.
Rule violated: "i" before "e" except after "c".
Rule violated: Words usually do not end with the letter j.
This is hardly a deal breaker, but it is something to keep in mind, your business name is also going to be your domain name. If your business name is more than one word, you need to consider how the two words will read when put together. Because names where the first word ends with the same letter the second word begins with can potentially be confusing.
Misspellings or Quirky spellings
If your business name is a misspelled version of a keyword, make sure the intended keyword is still obvious when read, and that the name is pronounced the same.
Keyword: Catch Good Misspelling: Katch Bad Misspelling: Catkh
Keyword: Finder Good Misspelling: Findr Bad Misspelling: Fider
A misspelling isn't going to spell exactly like it pronounced obviously when it comes to misspellings, you want to keep it simple. But a good rule of thumb is that you should be able to clear up confusion with a simple aside.
It's _____ with a ______.
It's ______with a_______and also change the _______
Many professionals believe that a hyphen makes the site look cheap, unorganized and unauthentic although many domain names use hyphens. In fact, it is preferred if you could avoid these at all costs. Also, studies have been performed where hyphenating the domain name to accentuate keywords had no real effect in search engines. In fact, these sites performed poorly against sites with the same name without a hyphen.