In For the other pages in this series go to the Affiliate Marketing for Beginners main page.
In this article, we shall pick a domain name, which will be the name of your blog, get it registered, and set up.
Sadly, it’s not as simple as you might think. With billions of sites already registered, producing a unique name isn’t going to happen with a few clicks.
But we have some tips to help you get through it.
What makes a good domain name?
Your goal is to come up with a name that’s broad enough to apply to many different topics in the future, but it also needs to be something that people can relate to the topic.
Even though it may be tempting to go ultra-broad, remember that Google clearly favors specialist sites.
- Cats.com – Too broad! You’re just another generic site and can’t exactly be seen as a cat food specialist with a domain like this.
- BestWetCatFood.com – Too narrow! What if you wanted to write about dry cat food or other cat food related topics?
TLD (Top Level Domain)
I would always go for a .com if it’s available, only because it’s memorable and its what people are used to. But other domains are just as good, you won’t rank higher or lower because of the domain.
There are a lot of domain choices nowadays, NameCheap lists 497 domains. I’ve not done it personally, but I like the idea of using the domain name as part of the core website name.
Cardio.fitness for a website about Cardio Fitness – instead of cardiofitness.com
Skin.beauty for Skin Beauty – instead of skinbeauty.com
Try to pick a short domain name, something snappy, easy to pronounce. 3 words at the most is a good rule of thumb. A good formula to use is: Niche Related Word + Branded Word.
Niche Related Word
Where possible, try to go for an exact domain. For example, Tennis. Most searches related to tennis have the word tennis in the search query. So having the word tennis in our domain name gets us in the mix with Google.
You should then include a word that describes what your brand is about. For example, House and Garden Care is about helping people care for their homes better.
Try adding a branded word to the end and start to find a unique name.
Branded keywords could be:
We could use these like…
There’s one last thing you should absolutely avoid. Hyphens!
Most people doubt the authenticity of websites with hyphenated domain names due to their bad reputation. No matter how tempting this may seem, we recommend you stay away from it.
Simply make the naming more creative by combining more words that describe what your customer wants.
You want the name to be specific enough that visitors know they are in the right place based on the name.
Meaning, the CreditCardSamurai.com domain would not be a great domain name for Savings Accounts content.
Furthermore, you should consider the domain name’s potential future growth…
CreditCardSamurai.com may make it more difficult to enter into other finance-related topics in the future.
PersonalFinanceSamurai.com would open you up to even more avenues for traffic in the future because it leaves the entire world of investing open as well.
It is not wrong to use any of these domain names, as each has its own advantages.
Many people prefer to have a narrow niche than to spread themselves too thinly…
Although it may take more time and effort, some prefer to have a broader niche because their overall income potential increases.
Your audience knows when they land on your site that they are in the right place because of the specificity.
Where to check domain name availability?
Check your domain name is available here
We have used the same company for our domains for many years, so we have no problems recommending NameCheap.com.
If you having trouble finding a domain name that is still available try the Beast Mode by clicking the text next to the search button. It will mix things around and look at other domains to try and get you an available domain.
When you have found an available domain name – go ahead and register it with NameCheap.
Where to host your new website?
Hosting is a place where your website files are stored. You can think of it as the place where your website lives.
Imagine if the domain name were the address of your house, and the web hosting was the actual house to which that address points. Web hosting is a necessity for all websites on the internet.
Cloudways offers managed WordPress hosting, so you won’t have to worry about sluggish websites or hosting headaches.
Besides being feature-rich, platform-as-a-service cloud servers allow you to scale your hosting resources as you grow your business. Performance, speed, and security are all perfected on their infrastructure.
They have a 3-day free trial to evaluate its managed WordPress hosting platform if you’re still on the fence.
Create your account on Cloudways and follow their instructions until it’s time to choose your server…
You should have completed 2 actions so far:
- Registered your domain name with NameCheap.com
- Created your hosting account and chosen your server on Cloudways.com
When you first start out there is no need to get a big superpower server. We recommend using DigitalOcean server with a server size of 1GB Premium.
The beauty here is we can start on a small server and move up to more powerful servers very easily, with 1 click upscaling. You won’t need to upscale for at least 12 months.
For Application choose “WordPress Version n.n” where n.n is the version number.
Enter a name for your website and server, it doesn’t matter what you type here, this is just for your reference.
Select DigitalOcean and Server size 1GB Premium.
Ignore the warning message.
For location choose an area near to your audience. We recommend always starting out by targeting the United States as they have the largest English-speaking population and therefore generating money will be easier there.
But if you really want to target another country then go ahead and choose a location nearby.
Click Launch Now and wait for CloudWays to set up your new server, it should be ready in a few minutes.
Access Your WordPress Website
The toggle should be moved to APPLICATIONS in order to access the WordPress website. You will be able to see your WordPress application. Click it to enter the Application Management area.
When you go to the Application Management area, you can find ACCESS DETAILS, where you can see both the web address for the application and the WordPress admin page URL.
The application can be launched by clicking the arrow icon in the APPLICATION URL. In the ADMIN PANEL section, you can launch the admin panel and get the admin credentials to log in to the application’s back end.
Congratulations on getting to this point…
It has been a bit techy. If you have any problems, reach out to us and we will help you out.
In the next Article in the Affiliate Marketing for Beginner Series, WordPress Settings, we will move into WordPress with basic configuration settings and then set up a theme to make your new site look pretty.
Founder of Mango & Coffee, George is a full stack software development professional for over 25 years. Since 2017 has developed an interest with online marketing, specifically SEO strategies and Content Marketing to increase traffic from search engines.
Affiliate marketing is an industry where almost anyone in the world can take part and build an independent business. Unfortunately, acquiring the right knowledge to get started is not easy, given the number of sites feeding people bad information. Mango & Coffee aspires to be one of the good sources of affiliate marketing online and believes this information should be available for free.