How to Pick a Domain Name

First of all, I want to thank all of you for the huge response to the WSO I released last week, “60 Minutes to $100 Days“. I thought it would do well, but it’s been way bigger than I expected and I’m grateful for all of your support.

It really is the best approach to building an online business, both right now and for the future.

This blog post and video is sort of an update for everyone who purchased the WSO, but I think my regular readers will get something out of it as well.

I’ve received literally thousands of emails since the WSO opened last Thursday, and it’s become very clear to me that I wasn’t detailed enough in two main areas:

  • Choosing a domain name
  • Building a list
  • Link building

So, I’m going to cover those two things in this post- let’s get into it:

How to Pick a Domain Name for your new site

The formula for a great domain name for this type of site is very simple. You want to include one or two main keywords relating to your niche, and then one word that makes the whole thing into a brand. For example:

campinggearfanatic.com

dogtrainingjunkie.com

homeimprovement101.com

You can also use .net or .org if you can’t get the .com… they’re all the same SEO-wise. If you don’t have hosting yet, don’t mess with Godaddy or Namecheap, because then you have to change your nameservers inside of your host… you can get it all done in one place with Hostgator. Plus like I said in the course, with Hostgator you have the ability to easily scale up your hosting account, where if you start with Bluehost or another shared host, you’ll have to completely move your sites when they start to get a decent amount of traffic.

That’s really all there is to choosing a great domain name that gives you the benefits of having keywords in your domain as well as it being a “branded” domain.

Getting Started with List Building

I covered this in the video so I’ll just go over the basics here…

Building a list from the get-go is a very smart move. When you can email previous readers and let them know about new content, you build a loyal subscriber/reader base, your content gets more “likes” and “shares”, this increases your avg. time on site, lowers your bounce rate, improves your search engine rankings, which leads to more subscribers, which starts the process over again, and in the end more subscribers and traffic obviously results in more sales.

As I mentioned in the video, if you don’t have an autoresponder service yet, I recommend starting with iContact, specifically for this type of site. iContact is better for this type of site because they’re the best service for creating great-looking HTML-formatted emails. It’s easy to use and you want to use these type of branded emails to build your brand and readership.

If you start with even just their $10/month plan and you buy through my affiliate link, I have a bonus video course on getting up and running with iContact and how to setup your first autoresponder funnel that I’ll give you access to. This course isn’t available for sale anywhere, it’s only available as a bonus for getting iContact through my link. If you’re interested, click here > click on ‘pricing’> scroll down to plans > find the “$10 for 250 subscribers plan” > click ‘buy now’ > then signup and then forward your receipt to me at nate (at) strayblogger.com and I’ll send you the bonus course.

There’s no time limit or something dumb like that on this bonus… but it’s not available for a free trial- it needs to be at least their $10/month plan.

A Simple Plan for Back Linking

Okay, I got a lot of questions on backlinking as well. Your backlinking plan for this type of site can be summed up in two steps:

  • Build buffer pages
  • Build mass links to those pages

To build buffer pages, just dedicate one day a week to link building. You need to spend your hour a day for at least five days a week creating new content for your site. So, to do a buffer page, you take an article you’ve put on your site earlier in the week, and you submit it to Goarticles and Articlebase. I skipped this in the video, but only use EzineArticles for your once-a-week 1200 word article for quality reasons.

Once you’ve posted the article on those two directories, build mass backlinks to those two articles with a tool like Unique Article Wizard. UAW isn’t essential, but it sure makes this a lot easier. I went into detail about why UAW works like it does in the video, so I won’t re-type it out here.

By following this type of link building format, you’ll avoid any Google penalties because there won’t be a bunch of low-quality links pointing directly to your site. The buffer pages of those article directories can absorb mass low-quality links and they’ll pass higher-quality link juice to your actual site, without having to worry about a penalty from Google.

Again, UAW isn’t essential and don’t feel like you need it… but if you’ve been planning on joining UAW, then you should hurry because of this email I got from Jason Arnold today:

uaw signup process changes

Alright- I hope this post cleared some things up with you and gave you more ideas… Let me know what you think in the comments below.

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67 Comments

  • Brian Yang

    Reply Reply April 2, 2012

    Great post Nate. Your video course was good and rock solid.

    Social sharing is underrated. Create a great article with a GREAT headline and it’ll get shared like crazy.

    The headline is the most important for social sharing articles.

    Great headline: 5 Tips to Keep You From Puking Your Guts Out

    Bad Headline: Tips on How to Prevent Vomiting.

    The first headline will get shared like crazy, the second… not so much.

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 3, 2012

      You’re right Brian- good headlines help a lot.

  • Mary Chicoine

    Reply Reply April 3, 2012

    Nate – thanks for this follow-up. Thanks too for the videos – they’re really terrific.

    Re UAW, is there another service similar to UAW that
    we could use in case UAW becomes unavailable.
    Or could you recommend one.

    Best regards,

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 3, 2012

      There are a lot of link services out there. There’s authority link network, article ranks, linkvana… there’s a lot. I don’t think UAW will ever go down… there’s no guarantees, but they’ve survived tons of Google updates.

  • luke

    Reply Reply April 3, 2012

    hey mate, from australia here bought your course yesterday. I’m just wondering is it fine to setup websites with artiseer with a blog format since i don’t know how to put articles on different pages. I’m also wondering if its fine to have adsense on every page or is it against the rules to have adsense with affiliate links? cheers though your course was great.

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 3, 2012

      Thanks Luke- glad you liked it.

      Yeah whatever site builder you’re most comfortable with is fine. The pages and posts thing really doesn’t matter… there’s no right way to do it.

      And yes, you can have Adsense ads and affiliate links on the same page, it doesn’t matter.

  • Dave

    Reply Reply April 3, 2012

    Thanks Nate! This course was great … exactly what I needed. I’m pretty new to internet marketing, still learning what works and what doesn’t. It was great to see that the method you describe in your course is the way I’ve been headed for a while now but you’ve made everything that I was missing crystal clear! My internet marketing efforts have only been bringing me about $10 – $20 per month on average and I only started about 5 months ago. The direction I need to keep following is clear to me now thanks to you!

    I wish I could afford to join UAW but until my business generates enough income to pay for it … I’ll have to do without. Is there any other option to mass backlinking my buffer articles that I can do for free?

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 3, 2012

      Dave- Earning that much so far is great… every $10 is easier than the previous $10.

      Yeah UAW isn’t a necessity, especially if it just doesn’t make financial sense. I don’t know of a free mass article submission service… but you could do a Fiverr UAW gig twice a month or something. The only thing is, the quality of the articles they’ll spin for you for $5 is really bad.

  • Hi Nate,

    Thanks for posting the videos. I will be looking at them since I bought your WSO.

    I’m not sure if joining UAW is safe anymore. A week ago I found 5 of my sites de-indexed by Google and after my checks found that it’s all because of UAW. As you know Google has just de-indexed Build Mt Rank on Mar 19. I had used a UAW plugin https://www.uniquearticlewizard.com/wordpress.html which allows me to have UAW articles freely published on my blogs. I get free content and it worked very well till last week when Google penalised these kinds of link building. In fact I also checked with a few others and the word is that “All blog network sites have been deindexed .. BuildMyRank .. HighPRSociety .. UAW .. ..”

    I published a post on Google aggressively targeting blog networks here if anyone wants to read:

    http://www.peterleehc.com/blog/work-from-home/warning-google-aggressively-targets-private-blog-networks

    Peter

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 3, 2012

      Hi Peter- In response to your comment… you’re talking about two different things. Using UAWs plugin for free content isn’t link building… it’s just publishing some of the articles that users submit.

      Using UAW for article submissions is what builds links.

      But you’re right that just using one linking source directly to your actual sites can raise flags in Google’s eyes.

      • Nate,

        Yes I’m aware that they are 2 separate things that’s why I didn’t expect Google to be so tough on people who used this UAW plugin to get free content on their site from other members. That said my warning is more on the UAW for article submissions that builds links mentioned by you. I have friends who either got hit or are saying others are.

        • Rob

          Reply Reply April 3, 2012

          Peter.

          Are the UAW links pointing directly back to the money site. I bet they are and that is a big difference than what Nate is suggesting.

  • Bob

    Reply Reply April 3, 2012

    How many buffer pages should you set up per money page? Are you suggesting only doing this for the home page or every page?

    thanks

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 3, 2012

      Just 2 buffer pages per article, except your 1200 word articles that you publish to Ezine as well.

      The way I look at link building for a big authority site is that quantity and quality of content is more important than link building, especially at first.

      So for the first few months, the worst thing you can do is overdo the backlinks… that’s what Google doesn’t want to see. Spend 90% of your time creating content, and don’t worry about building buffer pages for every single article you put on your site. Just do what you have time to do, but the most important thing is to stick to your content publishing schedule you set for yourself.

      After a few months, then you can go back and see what you’re ranking for, and build more links to those pages and your overall rankings will improve. SEO is a long-term process, and the worst thing is to build too many backlinks too fast.

  • brian

    Reply Reply April 3, 2012

    So you are sending out an email almost every day ? i have seen unsubscribes when emailing out blog updates via RSS automation rather than manually sending out a manual broadcast for each post with a custom headline and introdution….

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 3, 2012

      Do you mean on my other sites or here on Strayblogger?

      I only send out blog updates manually… but I guess if someone is subscribed to Feedburner they’ll be notified as soon as something new is published.

      • brian

        Reply Reply April 3, 2012

        I just meant are you emailing out on your authority sites for every post because if you post everyday during week then you are emailing every day

        • Nate

          Reply Reply April 5, 2012

          Oh gotcha… you’re right. I don’t send an email out for every article I post, usually weekly for that type of site.

  • brian

    Reply Reply April 3, 2012

    the article you use from your site each week for goarticles/articlebase are you just linking those back to the same exact article on your site ? on UAW I guess if you are using it 1x a week you could just use fiverr each week for UAW submissions with 1 link to within UAW submission to goarticle and 1 to articlebase.

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 3, 2012

      Yeah I use those articles to link right back to the same article and the homepage.

      And yes you’re right about the weekly UAW submission from Fiverr.

  • Art

    Reply Reply April 3, 2012

    Thanks for the clarification, Nate; good stuff.

    I’ve got a couple of questions though.

    First, regarding backlinks to our articles at article directories with links to our buffer pages, I own Article Marketing Robot and although I haven’t used it in a while, last I knew it was working pretty well. For those who are unfamiliar with it, Article Marketing Robot allows me to blast an article (spun or unspun) to many directories like GO Articles, Ezine Articles, etc. Couldn’t I use that instead of UAW?

    Second, approximately how long — how many words — should our regular articles for our blog be? 500? 800? 1000? (As far as I know you didn’t mention this in the course or on this video update.) Please note that I’m not referring to the 1220-word article we’re writing for Ezine; I’m talking about our regular, one-hour-per-day content.

    Thanks!

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 3, 2012

      Hi Art- Yeah you can definitely use AMR. In the Bring the Fresh forums there are always AMR guys arguing with UAW guys and then guys that use both…

      The regular articles should be at least 400 words, and up to 900, with everything in between for variation.

  • wai kei

    Reply Reply April 3, 2012

    Thank you for the update, Nate.

    One other thing that I feel was not adequately covered was the full structure of the authority website when it is built out.

    You showed different websites in the same niche; however, I would really like to know what a well structured website containing all the components you described in the guide looks like. And also discuss how each component relates to one another in a effective, well monetized manner.
    Thanks

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 3, 2012

      You’re welcome- There’s not a scientific structure to a big site… lots of content, list your most popular articles in the sidebar, interlink all of your pages where it makes sense, and funnel traffic to your money pages. It’s that simple… any big site with tons of content is structured more or less in the same format.

  • Joe

    Reply Reply April 3, 2012

    Great course and am now ready to go as had some questions about domains which you have answered here.

    Just need to pick the right niche now or it could all go tits up!

    Using fiverr for UAW is a good idea. You might be interested in this gig: http://fiverr.com/joe3000/submit-an-article-to-unique-article-wizard-to-get-your-lots-of-backlinks ;-)

    • brian

      Reply Reply April 3, 2012

      yeah, just be careful with the quality of spinning they do in fiverr. I used a popular UAW gig “topspin” and they spun total garbage and they guy was a jerk when I told him that. For higher quality SEO jobs I have heard good stuff about seoclerks.com which is little higher priced than fiverr.

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 3, 2012

      Glad it cleared some of that up for you Joe.

  • Garymac101

    Reply Reply April 3, 2012

    Great video training Nate. Just bought your $100/month in 1 hour/day training. Happened to get an email w/this link and it was very basic, but very good. I have a 22 yr old daughter who writes well that I’m gonna turn onto this video and encourage. Thanks for everything and keep up the good work :-)

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 3, 2012

      You’re welcome Gary- thanks for the support.

  • HT

    Reply Reply April 3, 2012

    Hi Nate. Appreciate the follow up. For domain name, if .net is not an issue, how about hypenated domain names? Is that a factor for SEO? And I’d appreciate if there’s more clear walk-through on how to monetize with Amazon Affiliate Program.

    Thanks!

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 3, 2012

      Hyphenated domains are fine… thanks for reminding me. I’ve got quite a few of them myself.

      For Amazon, have you looked through my free training series on Amazon sites here on Strayblogger? That will give you a lot of ideas.

  • Nate,

    A long time ago I had problems submitting my own site article to ezinearticle word for word. It was rejected and my account suspended and was told to prove ownership of my article in my site. This happened with a niche site which has no author name. Once I proved I’m the site owner, they took off the suspension. Does this still happen? or how do you avoid this technicality- it’s EZA pliagiarsm system check I guessed but it was a pain.

    Peter

    • Rob

      Reply Reply April 3, 2012

      Peter.

      I have had complete articles from my sites accepted at EZA long after indexing on G. I never had any issues so far.

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 5, 2012

      Peter- Yeah I’ve never had that happen, but I’ve heard it from several people as well. I don’t know how they decide to do it to some and not others…

  • Bruce

    Reply Reply April 3, 2012

    Hi Nate,

    Any chance you could make this video downloadable?

    I like to go over the material several times, but I live in a country where bandwidth is expensive, so it is better to download once and then watch/listen at your leisure.

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 5, 2012

      I made it downloadable- enjoy.

  • Patricia

    Reply Reply April 3, 2012

    Hi Nate, I’ve just bought your course. I wanted to ask what you think of building fans through the RSS feed, if you offer freebies and new products on posts – is it really essential to do email marketing as I would rather not…. Thanks

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 5, 2012

      Patricia- you can definitely do that, but long term you can’t make a better investment then an email service like Aweber or iContact.

      With RSS, you have to make an actual post to “send an email”, you can’t send info to subscribers whenever you want.

      The only real form of “push-button” traffic is an email list, and Aweber or iContact pays for itself many times each month.

  • Corey

    Reply Reply April 3, 2012

    Thanks Nate! I was wondering if you could make a blog post about how to structure your site? I mean what do we do with all of these links on our site when we reach say 50-100 pages?

    Also could you point us to a good free or cheap theme for this method? I am on day 3 now and loving this! The only problem is my site is already getting “cluttered” with links from my new pages im creating. If you could do a blog post on this im sure many would find it helpful. Thanks

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 5, 2012

      The 2011 theme that’s installed on WordPress out of the box is really good, and looks really good if you don’t want to/can’t invest in a premium theme yet.

  • Joe

    Reply Reply April 4, 2012

    Do you think making the domain and the site a bit more personal is a good idea? Like if your name was Wayne, getting a domain like WaynesWeightliftingEquipment.com and then giving the site a personal slant with a real author?

    Or is that a bit too unprofessional?

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 5, 2012

      Joe-

      You can do it either way and either way would work. Like having a picture and an overall feel of “this is my blog” type thing, vs. a “brand” type blog that doesn’t have a specific person front and center.

  • Deborah Zappa

    Reply Reply April 4, 2012

    Glad you made this post because it answered my question about domain names. Thanks.

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 5, 2012

      No problem Deborah, you’re welcome.

  • Bob Lemley

    Reply Reply April 4, 2012

    Nate,
    I’m excited about working your 1 hour a day program. I had a question about Ezine Articles. I worked with Adam Short’s NPC program for a while using Adsense on my websites. When I submitted articles to Ezine Articles that were based on the content of my posts Ezine rejected them claiming they were not relevant. I was careful to be sure they articles were original and were directly relevant to the website content. It seemed there was a chance Ezine was rejecting the articles because of the Adsense. Was that a problem unique to me or is it someting that happens to a number of people?

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 5, 2012

      Ezine has stepped up it’s quality guidelines, that’s why I advise in the course to make your weekly “big” article as high quality as possible so that you don’t have to mess with re-submitting it to Ezine.

      And… some of it comes down to the reviewer meaning the same article might get accepted or rejected just based on who reviews it at Ezine.

  • HT

    Reply Reply April 5, 2012

    Nate, I used to have an Amazon Affiliate account with another website. Can I use the same account with new websites? Or do I have to have one account for every website?

    Thanks! You rock!

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 5, 2012

      No you don’t need a different account per website. What you should do is use a different tracking ID per website, so that you know where sales are coming from.

  • HT,

    If I may jump in first before Nate does, yes you can use the same “amazon associates” account that you have for your other site. In fact you only need one account to be used for all your sites. One important thing I like to add is that it is important to know what can get your account banned by Amazon if you don’t follow their TOS. Someone recently was banned because she did not have the “required statement” on her site to identify herself as an associate. I wrote a post on this on my blog:

    http://www.peterleehc.com/blog/work-from-home/take-action-now-if-you-promote-amazon-products

    Peter

    • HT

      Reply Reply April 5, 2012

      Thanks Peter for the pointed!

  • Niall

    Reply Reply April 5, 2012

    Hi Nate,

    RE: link building – what’s your opinion on services such as Pixelpipe and Onlywire where you can post the same article to multiple social network sites, thereby generating lots of links?

    The 60mins to $100 per day is a great course by the way.

    thanks,

    -N

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 5, 2012

      Niall- I’ve never used those services, but social networking stuff does have value.. so if you like using them then there’s nothing wrong with it.

  • Joe

    Reply Reply April 6, 2012

    Does it matter if the posts we add to our sites never a get link from the sites hompage?

    As we add more and more content it won’t be practical to have a link on the home page of the site to every bit of content.

    That means there will be a lot of pages that I can user can only find by going directly do it (from Google etc) rather than from the home page.

    Is this going to be a problem in terms of Google not ‘rating’ the pages as they are pretty much invisible on your site?

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 6, 2012

      Joe- yeah you don’t have to link to every page from your homepage. And the main function of all your long tail keywords is to pull in traffic and then have them view your best content which will be linked to from your homepage.

      And no- pages can still be ranked without having to be linked to from the homepage.

  • Niall

    Reply Reply April 6, 2012

    Thanks for the reply Nate.

  • Fred Bartholomai

    Reply Reply April 6, 2012

    Nate,

    I know this is a loaded question and that you probably get asked this a lot – but I will ask anyways since I want to know what your response –

    But, generally speaking, if, following your course outline “60mins to $100 per day” – assuming good KW research, what would be broad
    estimate to getting on page #1 of google and to begin earning some income – just looking for a feel – for a timeline ?

    Thank. Love the course.

    Regards,

    Fred B.

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 6, 2012

      Fred,

      Well, if you’re putting up at least one article a day and a decent amount of backlinking each week, it’s very doable to get on the first page for your main keyword within 6-10 weeks. And once you do that you’ll be seeing sales as well.

  • Thomas Shaw

    Reply Reply April 11, 2012

    Hi there Nate,
    Nate you mention buffer sites like Articlesbase and Goarticles, but these sites are nofollow how can they pass link juice?
    Sorry if that sounds so accusingly

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 15, 2012

      Thomas- Good question. Goarticles are dofollow links in the author box, if it’s in the body then yes they’re nofollow. Articlebase is all nofollow, but it’s good to have those as well as it looks more natural to Google, and there’s also a debate about whether or not Google completely discounts nofollow links or not… my opinion is they still help. Read this thread for more insight on that…

  • Peter Evans

    Reply Reply April 11, 2012

    Hi Nate, I’d really like to put your methods into action. But there’s a couple of points I’m not sure of. There’s already been a couple of questions here regarding site structure and I know there’s no hard and fast rules but I’d like to know what you think about this.
    I notice on your double strollers site you seem to have a static home page.
    Is this the best way to go?
    http://codex.wordpress.org/Creating_a_Static_Front_Page
    If so do you also have another page for all your article posts?
    Finally do you group the articles into categories? or is that not important?
    Thanks in advance for your reply

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 15, 2012

      Peter- those are good questions, and I’m putting together a big post on site structure that I’ll publish next week.

      But yes, I like using a static homepage usually- I don’t on Strayblogger yet- and then you want to group your articles into a few categories like you’re saying… you can accomplish that automatically if you use all posts, or you create your own category pages if you’re using pages. I like using pages mostly… but it’s just personal preference.

  • Joe

    Reply Reply April 17, 2012

    Should these sites have a ‘main keyword’ that gets a lot of searches, that you are targeting or should they only be targeting lots of smaller traffic keywords?

    If the site does have a ‘main keyword’ that you are going after would you mention that keyword in every/most articles?

    I don’t remember seeing a reference to this in the course.

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 18, 2012

      Joe- Yeah you want to choose a bigger/fairly competitive main keyword for your whole site, with a long-term aim of ranking for it… You don’t need to mention it in every page or post… just the fact that your site is on the topic is enough that the SEs figure it out.

      • bobby s

        Reply Reply April 18, 2012

        hi nate, just went through your course, fantastic!

        one question about choosing the domain. in your camping example, choosing a broad name like campinggearpro.com, with the long-term aim of ranking for the competitive keyword of ‘camping gear’, seems would be very difficult even in the long-term. (likewise for any such broad keyword based domain name)….

        my question is, do we really care about ranking the main home page domain anyways for the broad topic/keyword? seems as long as we are getting good traffic overall from all our other article pages which are ranking high for small to medium tail keywords, we wouldn’t really care.

        • Nate

          Reply Reply April 18, 2012

          Thanks Bobby- glad you liked it.

          Yeah ideally you’ll rank eventually for your main keyword, but if you put enough content on the site then it will just be extra traffic since the majority of your traffic will be from your long tail keywords from all your content.

  • Shaun

    Reply Reply April 17, 2012

    Hey Nate, can you tell me what you know about JustHost.com?
    I have hosting with them and my package includes unlimited domains, disk space, and bandwidth and alot of other extras. Are they the same as BlueHost or different? The reason I ask is I would hate to have to move my sites later for some reason lol. Thanks Nate.

    • Nate

      Reply Reply April 18, 2012

      Shaun,

      I looked at their site and it looks like they are only shared hosting, meaning you can’t upgrade to a better server if you ever need to. If you have an account though I don’t think it’s worth switching right now- I’d just stick with them and cross that bridge when you come to it. I guess unless you have a site in mind that you haven’t already started on their servers…

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