Domain Name Ideas – Things to Watch Out for in Those Domain Name Suggestion Tools

Where do you get your domain name ideas from? Your friends? Your family? Your dog?

We’ve launched several sites, and coming up with a good domain name is always difficult. It seems all of the good ones are taken. There are two basic strategies that people use.

Come up with a new domain name that isn’t already registered.
Go after a domain name that was previously owned. (This is always the more expensive option because you are either buying a premium domain name, or buying an expired domain name on auction.)

Right now, we’re going to focus on the first method and try to come up with a new domain name that isn’t already registered.

This is the cheapest option, but it involves trial and error. There are a lot of free online tools out there that can help suggest good domain name ideas. Some of these tools are run by the registrars (i.e. GoDaddy, NetWork Solutions, etc) and some of these tools are run by independent websites (i.e. MakeWords.com). But they’re all free.

Basically, you type in the domain name you want. The online tool will tell you if the domain name is available, or it will suggest a list of other domain names that you might be interested in. They come up with the list by adding words before (prefix) or after (suffix) your search term.

For example, google.com is taken, but hotgooglestore.com is not.

Some of the better domain name idea tools will use a thesaurus to come up with similar but different words. Although we probably wouldn’t buy a domain name from Yahoo, we did like their domain name tool.

For example, redcafe.com is taken, but RedDiner.com is not.

MakeWords.com is a neat tool because they have an advanced keyword tool search that lets you choose different themes of words to try before or after your search term.

So, for example, their “action” theme tries different combinations of your search term and words like jump, shout, cut, etc.
Their colors theme adds words like red, blue, yellow… You get the idea.

The best part of MakeWords is that you can create your own list of words to add to your search term. Just click on “list of affixes” at the bottom of the webpage and enter in a custom list of words that you like. The website will spit out a bunch of domain name ideas with your custom words added before and after your search term.

The worst part of MakeWords is that sometimes it’ll tell you a domain name is available, but when you go to a registrar and try to buy it, it turns out that it’s not available after all. Because this tool wasn’t always reliable, we tended to stick with domain name generators run by the registrars.

How These Sites Make Money:

Domain Name Suggestion sites are free because they make their money when you decide to register a domain name with them.

Chances are, if you used GoDaddy’s domain name tool, then when you find your dream domain name, you’ll just buy it from them.
If you used MakeWords.com, you can choose which registrar company that you want to buy from, and they’ll send you there with the click of a link. (If you buy from that company, then MakeWords.com will make a commission from the sale.)

Bottom Line: Use any site that you like to come up with domain name ideas. But, when you’re ready to buy, choose the registrar that offers the best domain name package and price, not the registrar that has the best domain name suggestions.

Why? Because with domain names, the price ranges from $1.99 to $34.99 per year. And, not all registrars offer the same quality of service. What’s worse is there are no refunds on domain names. Once you pay, the money is gone. So, buyer beware.

If you’re ready to register domain names for your blog, we’re here to help at http://domainnames.webdiggin.com where you’ll find this information and more detailed information about why we switched to BlueHost and WordPress.

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