Manning Search Marketing

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When registering domain names for those businesses that are located in Canada and want to focus on their regional area or Canadian search, there are a few things you need to consider. If you are only going to be targeting Canadians, then you can look at registering a .ca domain.

The best solution for a regional (Country specific) target, is to sign up your website with Google Webmaster Central. Once you have your website profile added, all you have to do is click on Tools, then click on Set geographic target. This is a good option if you have a .com domain and have your site hosted outside of your geographic target.

Now, if you happen to have a .com domain, something else you can do is have a hosting company that has its servers located in Canada. Search engines can tell where a sites are hosted based on the IP addresses with the DNS server information.

You should also have your business listed with Google Places for your regional/local searches, this is a great way to help expand your reach.

So essentially, you can still go with a .com domain name, and still successfully how in Google Canada results with no problem.

Now with choosing a domain name, there are some general rules you should follow.

First, think of some of the main keywords for your industry and use  these along with branding your company. Try to avoid going with keyword heavy domains that have no branding that can set you apart from the competition. In October of 2012, Google released an Exact Match Domain Algorithm Change. This targeted low quality exact match domains.

Next you want your domain name to be easy to remember and easy to type. I have a preference to avoiding hyphens in domain names. Imagine every time your telling someone your domain name, and having to say dash. If you are to choose a domain name with a hyphen/dash, do not get two dashes in a row. This looks very spamming in the search results.

Probably one of the best things to consider when registering a domain name is Copyright Infringement. If you get caught with this, all the work put into that domain name will be all for nothing, as you will most likely not be able to keep the domain and not 301 redirect to your new site.

The main idea is to find a domain that will stick in the users mind, incorporating your Brand and possibly a keyword to help describe your business.

A good website to see available domains is