What’s The Difference Between A Website And A Domain Name?

One question that many of our clients ask is, “What’s the difference between a website and a domain name?”  Both carry a lot of weight when it comes to your law practice’s brand, and knowing the difference is essential when building your website and developing marketing materials. 

Simply explained, a website is your firm’s virtual home, filled with content that showcases your firm’s locations, professionals and experience. As with any home, it must sit on a piece of land or, in the case of the web, virtual property – that is your domain name or the web address that folks type in when visiting your site.

Choosing  a Domain Name

When searching for the right domain name, you want to keep a few things in mind. The domain name you choose should reflect your brand or firm name as it will be the first thing prospective clients, clients, and colleagues r see. You want the name to be unique so that it stands out from the competition, gains recognition, and increases web traffic. 

In selecting a domain, you want to avoid words or names that are difficult to spell or long word combinations that may be typo-prone. It’s also important to steer clear of domain names that are too similar to others. For example, if mybostoncaraccidentattorney.com is being used by another firm, it’s not prudent to use mybostoncaraccidentattorneys.com, even if it is available; in doing so, you may inadvertently send a prospective client to a competitor.

Registering a domain is simple and only takes a few minutes. To get started, you’ll simply create an account with an ICANN-accredited registrar and follow the setup wizard; popular registrars in the United States include Network Solutions, GoDaddy, and Tucows. 

A Note About URLs

The term domain is often used interchangeably with URLs but there is an important distinction between the two. URL, short for Universal Resource Locator,  is the full web address (which includes your domain name) for a specific webpage. The URL always contains the domain name. For example, if the domain name is mybostoncaraccidentattorneys.com, the URL for the firm’s blog might be mybostoncaraccidentattorneys.com/blog.  

With your firm’s website serving as the cornerstone of your marketing efforts, determining the best domain name is no easy feat. An experienced digital agency can help you understand your options and make the best choice for your practice’s online home.