Affiliate marketing can be one of the most profitable income levers if you know how to do it right and are willing to put in the time and hard work needed to succeed. Here are some tips for beginners in this field on choosing a domain name for an affiliate marketing website.

Be Prepared to Build Your Brand Name

Google favors sites that are built around a brand name. However, that doesn't mean you can simply choose a name, include it in your website URL and expect immediate growth. You will need to work hard to build awareness of your brand and what it has to offer. The good news is, it is worth all the hard work. What is more, there are many free tools and tactics you can use to build your brand name online, including:

  • Facebook
  • YouTube
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
  • Instagram
  • LinkedIn
  • Writing one or more eBooks
  • Guest Blogging

Choosing the Right Domain Name

The best domain names are short and use a .com ending. While there are plenty of other cool endings you can pick from, most consumers are still used to the traditional .com domain name ending. 

Make sure your domain name is short and easy to remember. Never use hyphens or numbers as part of the name. Domain names with hyphens and/or numbers tend to do poorly in Google. Additionally, customers often have a hard time remembering domain names of this nature.

It's also important to make sure your domain name is scalable so that it can be effectively used not only now but also in the future. Bear in mind you may wish to expand the original goal of your website, or modify it to suit the needs of current or new customers. Don't limit yourself by choosing a domain name that can't be scaled in the future.

Using a keyword as part of your domain name is always a good idea. However, it's not an absolute must. While keyword usage in your URL is a ranking factor in Google's search engine, it is no longer as major of a ranking factor as it once was. It is now more important to choose a relatable keyword that is either your brand name, or closely associated with it, than it is to force an awkward-sounding keyword into your domain name.

Never Infringe on Anyone's Copyright

When choosing a domain name for an affiliate marketing website, it can be tempting to add a well-known brand name to your domain name in order to make it sound more authoritative. For example, a company doing affiliate marketing for Amazon may want to pick a name such as Someone promoting Nike sports shoes may want to include the company name in their URL. However, doing so is never a good idea. Company names are copyrighted and you can land in serious legal trouble if you use these names without permission.

Additionally, limiting yourself to a single brand name when starting your affiliate business can limit your business growth in the future. Affiliate marketers are not bound by law to only market goods for a single company and you may find that working with several companies is a great way to not only make money, but also to provide your customers with the best value for their money.

Another point to bear in mind when choosing a domain name for an affiliate marketing website is that it's always a good idea to check any domain name you are considering using online to make sure another company hasn't already claimed it. It's easy to come up with what you think is an original domain name, only to discover that it belongs to someone else. Checking out domain name possibilities ensures your domain name is truly original and not putting you in danger of legal troubles.

Other Points to Remember When Choosing a Domain Name for an Affiliate Marketing Website

  • Choose your target audience before picking a domain name
  • Research expired domain names. While it is possible to find a really good one, it take some legwork to do so. You will need to do extensive research to make sure the one you choose is related to your current business, has not incurred Google penalties, has a high PageRank and more. I use Godaddy’s domain name auctions and aftermarket to start my research.
  • It's not a bad idea to buy your domain name with more than one ending. While your .com website may be your primary website, you may find that other site endings also have much to offer in the future.

How do I get started?

Getting started with choosing a domain name for an affiliate marketing website is easy.

Start your domain name search and see if your idea is available with GoDaddy's domain name search.

If you are considering an all in one platform for your affiliate marketing business, Wealthy Affiliate (which I use for my affiliate marketing websites), is a great choice. It is free to sign up, offers free affiliate marketing training as well as free hosting for 2 websites. You can also buy and register your domains via the Wealthy Affiliate platform and it also includes free privacy of owner contact information for your domain name.