How can I come up with a catchy name for my Vacation Rental Home?

> Does anyone know a site (or method) to use for
> coming up with a pleasant,memorable,catchy or
> otherwise appropriate name for a vacation rental?

Referrals are very important to any business.  They’re especially important in the vacation rental business where many folks rely on the recommendations of people they know.

The problem is, people often recommend vacation rental homes verbally when they’re talking on the phone, or sharing a meal, or driving in a car.   I ask my guests how they heard about my website and they often say that they heard about us at work or at a social gathering.   The key here is that they *heard* about our website and remembered it.  They didn’t need a link.  They didn’t have to write it down.  They heard it,  they remembered it, and they typed it correctly in their Internet browser to find us.

So, when I create my website names (I have more than 100) I like to imagine that my goal is to *tell* the website name to someone who can’t write it down and have them effortlessly remember it.  In fact, I’ll often test my domain names with the non-computer people I know.   I’ll casually discuss with someone a domain name that I’m considering but I won’t specifically *ask* them to try to remember it.  Then, a few days later I’ll ask them, “Do you happen to recall the website name I was telling you about?”   If your friends, co-workers and customers can easily remember and correctly verbalize your domain name then they can help recruit potential guests for you.

Here are some rules I use when creating a domain name:

1) First, try to think of names that are related to the primary feature or  attraction of your home or your home’s area.   Is your vacation rental home on a lake?  Near a  beach?  In the city? Near some tourist attraction?  Make a list of these  words or short phrases as a starting point for a domain name.

2) The shorter the domain name, the better. Shorter domain names are easier to  remember, easier to say, easier to spell, and faster to write.

3) Strive for a .COM name.  While .ORG and .NET names are acceptable for Organizations and Networks a .COM name is still  the king of the hill.   If you choose any domain extension other than  .COM, it will only confuse people who naturally think .COM first when they think of any Internet web site.

4) Avoid Hyphens. Remember the idea about conveying the name in speech,  “Oh, I saw this great vacation rental home on the web, it was at, ‘my hyphen vacation hyphen villa hyphen by hyphen the hyphen sea dot com.”  See what a mess that is to say, let alone for anyone to remember?

5) Avoid plural words or words that can be pluralized unless you plan to buy all the derivative names.   Was the domain name “TennesseeVacationRental?” or was it, “TennesseeVacationRentals?”  if you don’t own both domains then expect to lose traffic to the guy who buys the other domain name.    It’s best to avoid the issue completely, if possible by using words in your domain name that aren’t typically pluralized.

6) Avoid words that are easily misspelled.   One of my websites is named www.Mickeytown.com and although I think that’s a fairly easy domain to remember and spell, I’ve been compelled to also buy the domain Mickytown.com and Disneytown.com because I discovered those were two of the other domain names that my prospective guests were mistakenly typing when trying to find my website.

7) Generally, avoid numbers unless they have some sort of memorable significance.  For example, most people can remember  number sequences like 411, and 911, and 123.    Some people will try to spell the name and some won’t remember if the numbers come before or after the words.   So, why complicate your domain name with numbers if you don’t need to?

8) Likewise, avoid words that have multiple spellings for the same pronunciation like  to, too, two.    Again, you want to make the path effortless to your website, and including ambiguous words makes it harder for your customers to find you.

Good luck!

Chuck Eglinton

Http://www.MickeyTown.com

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Http://www.FastLister.com

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