There are many components that go into creating a good website or blog, but one of the most important – and sometimes overlooked – factors is having a good domain name. Something that fits well with your business name and purpose, something that’s memorable and not prone to misspelling, and something that taps into your targeted keywords to enhance your SEO efforts.
You can spend hours brainstorming the right business, website or blog name, but there are some great tools available online to give you a huge range of suitable blog name ideas in a snap. Blog name generators are not a new concept, and there are tons available… not all of them quality. I wanted to put a bunch to the test and give you the skinny on some of the tools I thought yielded the best results, and proved simple to use.
To test the many blog name idea generators I stumbled across online, I imagined myself to be in the business of selling rock band tee-shirts, looking to target and incorporate the keyword term ‘band tee’ for SEO, and because it would most clearly explain my hypothetical business in a nutshell.
Here are the five best tools I recommend trying out for yourself.
Softwarefindr Name Generator
The team at Softwarefindr have launched a very clever tool which provides instant blog, podcast and domain name ideas based on the keywords you enter. These suggestions appear in more or less real time as you type! Check it out here.
The tool works by combining your chosen keywords with commonly used prefixes and suffixes, and it also uses a thesaurus to suggest similar words and word combinations which really expands the number of options. Of course it also checks to see if these are available as domains which is really a key point of such a tool because you need to know the domain is available for any name you choose.
Lean Domain Search
WordPress’ parent company Automattic recently acquired Lean Domain Search, and it sets the bar extremely high for all of the other tools on this page.
I plugged ‘band tees’ into Lean Domain Search and was presented 4989 available domain ideas. But the sheer number of suggestions wasn’t the only thing that impressed me.
Using Lean Domain Search, when you select one of the domains suggested, the site double checks the domain is still available, but also checks that the related Twitter name is also available. For example, when I clicked ‘BandTeesPro.com’ I was shown that @BandTeesPro was available on Twitter. I was also directed to register for the domain with three popular providers, making the task simple.
Another bonus of using Lean Domain Search is that you can browse the list of suggestions on your webpage, or you can copy the entire list to your clipboard with the click of a button and paste it into a document to come back to later.
Panabee stands out from the plethora of ugly blog name generators online thanks largely to its attractive, quirky interface, but it also delivers on functionality.
Using this tool, you’re presented with a list of .coms and international domains (some of which are already taken, meaning you need to click through to see availability) as well as lists of related terms for each of the words plugged into the system.
You’ll also be presented with a brief list of Google adwords currently targeting those terms (for example, in my testing Panabee displayed a selection of other businesses promoting band tees) to give you an idea of the kind of competition you’ll be facing online.
You can change domain extensions, to .biz, .org and more, and when you click a domain name suggestion and you’re automatically directed to GoDaddy, offering further related suggestions and purchasing options.
Domainr is slightly different to the other tools I came across, but it’s twist on the domain generator concept got my attention right away.
Doesn’t offer suggestions for related words and a pile of possible domain name options, but it does offer suggestions for domain extensions that can be used to give you a shorter domain, and a point of difference.
When I plugged bandtees into their search field I was presented with a brief list of 13 options, some available and some unavailable, and some including some clever domain extension use I wouldn’t have ordinarily considered, such as
Integrating your domain extension into your name isn’t for for everyone, but could be a good option to check out if you’re looking for something a little different – particularly if you’re working in the tech and innovation industries.
Enter your targeted words and hit search and Name Mesh offers a selection of common short domains, similar domain suggestions, SEO-focused suggestions, fun suggestions and mix suggestions to help you find a domain name that’s perfect for your business blog or website.
Domains are marked red or green to indicate their availability, and you can hide unavailable domains and set a maximum character length in the settings. You can also click a domain option to see its social availability on Facebook and Twitter, and turn additional extensions on and off (such as .com, .io, .co, and .net) to give you more or fewer options.
Domains Bot is simple to use with a clean interface. Simply enter your keywords and hit the Search button, then further refine your list by allowing or disallowing synonyms for each of your keywords, selecting which TLD extensions to include, your price range and more.
You’ll be presented with a list of available and already-registered domains, and information about social availability for each suggestion. Hit the Buy button next to the suggestion you like and be directed to a list of registration providers and prices.
Have a suggestion for a great tool I’ve missed here? Be sure to share it in the comments!