On the 17th of June 2002, a company known as Stealth Commerce (aka Telmex Management Services, aka Lost in Space SA and aka Drevil) registered the web-address (also known as a ‘domain name’) kraftpizzacompany.com for their own use, and (according to the Dispute-Resolution Documentation) ran an adult escort service & sexual-content website on that web address.
Needless to say, the website probably received a large amount of traffic from persons who were looking for information from the Kraft Pizza Company… and certainly not an adult website! Which leads me to the title of today’s post – “Have you ever thought about those who miss-spell the address of your website?”.
These days, most people who register domain names (which contain the names of big companies or products) simply for the purpose of redirecting them to adult, advertising or their own websites, seem to lose the case if / when they eventually get to court. However, there’s no rule to stop you from registering multiple valid domains (and by valid, I mean that they adhere to the various rules of domain name registration) and redirecting them to the one website.
For example, if you own XYZ Self Storage, you’re most likely entitled to register xyzselfstorage.com.au, xyzstorage.com.au, selfstoragexyz.com.au and even names that include the suburb you’re in – for example, storagegeelong.com.au, if the site is located in Geelong. The latter may not get through the registration process for a .com.au domain name (the governing body that oversees Australian domain name registrations is more strict than the international .com / .net / .org domain space), but you would certainly be able to get selfstoragegeelong.com [note: no “.au” on the end] if it were available at the time of registration. Due to the ease & low-cost of registering domain names, it may be worth spending some time thinking about the spelling of your company name, suburb, or even the way your company name is put together.
For example, even if your company name is legally termed XYZ-Storage (with a hyphen), it would be wiser to register the domain name without the hyphen, as the general internet population would assume the hyphen is omitted from the website address. Naturally, I would always strongly recommend registering both domain names & then redirecting one to the other – that way you won’t lose any “miss-spelling” customers at all – which is, I guess, the whole idea behind this post. So have a think about hyphens, potential miss-spellings, difficult-to-remember company- (or place-) names and anything else that may cause your customers to get confused and visit the wrong website.
Because if you haven’t thought about it then gone ahead and registered that ‘wrong website’ name, your customers will either get to a website that doesn’t exist, or get to a website that your competition has snapped-up after reading this blog post 😉 If you’d like to know more, please get in touch with me.