Changing your web site address or domain name


Fri 16 Apr 2010

I frequently get asked by people about migrating their web site to a different address or domain. People are concerned about the impact that it will have on marketing efforts or more importantly on search engine placement.

I can happily report that a carefully structured approach allows a number of choices when shifting to a better address to minimise any downsides.

I will discuss it more, but first let's answer the question about why you would change your address. We often feel wedded to our domain address as though it IS our business name. This is not the case, as you are able to retain full control of the old address and redirect to the new location. Reasons for moving may include:

A poor choice in the first place
Change of business focus or location
A domain that is closer to the business name
Using a domain name that includes locality
Grabbing a domain that is �way cool�

Let's talk about a couple of these.

When the Internet kicked off there was a lot of quick decisions made about web site address purchases and the frenzy continues today. Some businesses purchased a �.net.au� to get the name they wanted, while others considered it a good idea to get a domain with a hyphen in it. Both these decisions aren't real good. �.net.au� were reserved for Internet companies and now confuse people that expect .com.au or .com. A hyphen is located variously on keyboards and hard for the average person to find and that makes it another internet name no-no.

I am personally a big fan of domain addresses that spell out your business and locality. It makes plenty of sense to move to such an address. My clients at PacificSunriseWhitsunday.com are just one example of this. Their number one web site address specifically names product and locality, instantly identifying them and their �home�. The search engines love this too and we frequently see this in search statistics. Anyone that watch search result patterns will frequently see locality specified along side the �thing�. More often people will search for �restaurants airlie beach� then just �restaurants�.... and a domain to more closely match this makes a lot of sense for getting more hits.

The other one is �way cool� domains. A number of years, I spied the availability of deja.vu, not a spare seat at Airlie's favourite restaurant, but the Vanuatu NIC's right to end domains in �.vu�. The registered address of �www.deja.vu� had been taken by someone in the USA years ago, but the  registration had now expired... a couple of emails later and I had picked up one of the shortest / punchiest domains available, which operates in stasis as a �global� version of ChannelWhitsundays.com ready to run.

There is plenty of other tricks and things to know about domain purchase and migrating a site to a new address, so I welcome your questions via my Internet consulting businesses, eCentral. Contact  me on 0407 15 13 11 to find out more on this and every digital marketing question you might have.

John Nayler is eCentral Internet Consultants. Along with various hi-tech contractors, eCentral offers all manner of digital technologies in favour of your online and business success. Channelwhitsundays.com and deja.vu are outlets for digital marketing owned by eCentral.


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What business leaders have to say about eCentral

"... to a site that is user friendly, produces fantastic results"

We have been working with eCentral for over a year now ...and will continue to use his services indefinitely due the complete satisfaction we have in this arrangement. They have taken us from a web site that was hard to manage and invisible to a site that is user friendly, produces fantastic results in terms of direct business...they have placed us into top 5 positions ...and I can now see the steps they took to grow our understanding, knowledge and then take the steps to grow our online success. Can't recommend them highly enough.

Shane McNally
Whitehaven Xpress

You might ask, why do John's web designs work so well?

No matter how clever in an IT sense web developers may be, if they don’t understand the basic principle that web sites are a business’s window to the world and should convert information into revenue, they aren’t of much value. For these reasons, I have immense respect for John Nayler and his knowledge and skills and highly recommend him to anyone who may be thinking of engaging his services.

Brownie
Coastwatch

eCentral consistently delivered software systems that sustained our growth and the need for bespoke software to support the business model.

The simplicity of the systems and software enabled staff to proceed with minimal training while delivering reports integral to the management of the business. By the time the systems were built, eCentral had gone on to construct a Trust Accounting System which was fully integrated with the rest of the application set streamlining our workflow significantly and providing substantial cost saving due to efficient work processes. For an IT consultant, John has a unique capacity to interrogate the processes within the business and understand the business drivers. His solutions were always with our specific business outcomes in mind. I have, in over 40 years in business, found this to be a very rare combination. I highly recommend the software development capabilities of John Nayler and eCentral.

Don Horsfall
Conveyancing Works Solicitors

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