As you start reaching out and working with clients directly, you'll want to have a website for your voice-over business.
The first step in creating that website is choosing your domain name.
I'm going to give you some tips to help you do that on this episode of the podcast.
In this series we’re talking about having a website for your voice-over business.
In the last episode we talked about if and when you might want to start thinking about a website.
Today is all about choosing your domain name (aka URL or website address).
This is the name clients will type into a web browser to visit your website.
And it's also going to be part of your email address when you use it to set up your email account.
It's important and it's going to take some time and thought so you go with a name you love for years to come.
When I first started in voice-over, all the work I did was in radio imaging production.
I had several radio stations as clients.
I would record the voiceover and then produce liners and promos using music and sound FX. Then I'd send the fully-produced audio to the radio station.
I was working with enough of them that I wanted to have a website to show my work and make it easy for them to contact me.
So, I bought a domain name.
My very first website domain was McCoyProductions.net and I still use it today (since I've used it for so long and it's established).
But if I could go back and change it, here's a couple small things I didn't think about at the time.
Hopefully this helps you in choosing your website name:
First, is the . NET instead of the .COM.
The .COM was already taken, but I prefer .COM. To me, .NET always feels like a second choice ("oh the .COM must have been taken).
It hasn’t made that much of a difference when giving it out or with ranking on Google, but .COM is my preference.
Second is the word "productions".
At the time "productions" made a lot of sense, since I was producing audio.
But now in 2023, 99% of the work I do is just voice-over.
So "productions" has less meaning to what I do now.
Also, "productions" is a long word and when you have to spell it out there is a greater chance at having a typo.
So I suggest going with a shorter name.
One other thing I have find myself needing to clarify often is whether or not it's "production" or "productions".
Again it’s something that can be confused, so I would avoid adding an S to any word you’re considering, or at least know you may need to clarify often.
All in all, these are minor issues. They haven't caused huge problems. But I do see how they can cause confusion.
So when you are thinking of your domain name, my first choice for you would just be "yourname.com".
Unless your name is difficult to spell or has multiple ways to spell it.
Think about this:
When you give out the website address - is it going to require clarification of any kind?
Or is it easy for someone to understand?
You want it to be as easy as possible.
This way the client won't be confused or run into an error by mistyping it.
And you won't have to constantly clear up confusion when you give it out.
So, first name last name .com is my top choice as long as it's easy to spell and doesn’t create any question around how to spell it.
The problem is that the more common your name, the more likely it is for the domain to be owned by someone else already.
If you run into that, then I would consider adding voiceover or VO to the end.
To keep it short you could just use your first or last name and VO.
You could also try something like Voice Of First Name .com.
And you don't always have to use your name either.
You could use your business name or describe your voice or type of work you do.
An example would be ElearningVO.com.
As mentioned, .com is still my preference but there are other extensions that might make sense for you as a voice actor.
Some options include .co, .pro, .actor or .media.
One I recently registered is malevoice.actor.
Always avoid using hyphens, numbers or any words that can be spelled differently.
With these suggestions in mind, you can start your search for the perfect domain name.
I've been using PorkBun - because it's the lowest price I've found, they are great to work with and they give you suggestions when what you searched for isn't available.
Cloudflare is another option that has low registration prices, but is a little more confusing to use.
As you search you may find a couple you want to have.
Since they are each less than $10 per year, it won't cost much to buy more than one.
Then you can redirect any domains you buy to your main website.
And that’s pretty much it, these are the things I consider when looking for a domain and where I go to buy one.
If you'd like my help narrowing down a website domain name and seeing the website template I use on my own website - check out the VO Website Template.
It's a professional voice-over website customized and setup for you.
It's an easy way to get your voice-over website up and running quickly.
Keep in mind, no matter what you're doing in your business, the goal is to make it easy for the customer to do business with you. And that includes getting to the website address you give them.
You don’t want to spend all your effort getting someone to type in your website only for them to mistype it and be lost.
I hope that helps you!