Building a business on a premium, one-word .COM domain can mean that in terms of digital branding, your company is set for life. Yet, we don't see companies launching on premium domains very often, thanks largely to the disparity between a startup's budget and the cost of the best one-word .COM domains.
Here, I speak with David Kosmayer, an entrepreneur who bucked the trend by launching his AI website creation business, Bookmark, on Bookmark.com. We'll learn about Bookmark, the Bookmark.com domain, and how owning a premium .COM from day one can benefit a business.
What's your background, and how did that lead to you building Bookmark?
I started my first tech company in 1999. It was an affiliate marketing company, and our main goal was to work with and help small businesses get their products online while driving traffic to their websites. Doing this gave me a first-hand view of the world of small business owners and start-ups.
My company grew to over 60 employees with millions of dollars in revenue, and from there I realized that start-up founders needed something better. They needed a solution for their website and online store that works for everybody. That is where the Bookmark journey began.
Can you tell me about Bookmark, and what the company offers?
Bookmark is the first-ever AI-powered, auto-optimizing website builder. Built with the capabilities to build a brand-new personalized website in 2 minutes without the use of any templates or coding, it truly levels the playing field for every business owner.
We pride ourselves on our ease of accessibility, along with the fact that we have every single website feature needed to grow a successful online business. We want business owners to spend less time running their website, and more time running their business.
How did you settle on Bookmark as a brand name, and how did you acquire Bookmark.com?
After establishing connections at my previous company, I became friends with people who owned and held some large domain names, as well as one friend owing a domain registrar. At the time, myself and others were looking at domain names like fresh real estate in downtown New York. I was beginning to acquire some really great domain names and saw all of this as an investment for the future.
When I began building an AI-powered website builder, I remembered I owned bookmark.com and immediately thought it was a perfect fit. Bookmark is less about a page placeholder and more about making your mark in the digital world.
Also, everybody is familiar with "bookmarking" a website, so naming the company was one of the easiest decisions I have ever made.
How beneficial was operating on the Bookmark.com domain from day one?
Owning the bookmark.com domain from day one was really beneficial to establish an early trust with our audience. When people see a name as strong as Bookmark, I believe it immediately gives them some sense of authenticity from the brand.
As we all know, branding is extremely important, and there is nothing more important for a first impression than the name of your company. Also, owning the domain name from day one means that we will never have to rebrand into another name for our company, which is a really awesome feeling.
What are the positive impacts of launching your brand using a premium domain?
On top of gaining early credibility and making a great first impression, one thing having a name like Bookmark helps towards is recognizability. It is a short and sweet word that anybody who has spent a day online is familiar with.
This makes our brand very easy to remember, which can be very beneficial for word of mouth/marketing purposes. With the ability for our audience to easily remember our name and recognize our brand, we have untapped potential for growth.
What is the most important thing that owning the Bookmark.com domain allows you to achieve?
Once again, the trust of our audience is everything. On top of being partnered with Moneris, one of the largest payment processing companies in Canada, our name provides a sense of trust that can't be found in, lesser domains.
So I believe establishing the early sense of trust is the most important thing our domain name achieves. It's important to note that without a strong domain name, many of our early users would have never signed up in the first place.
How important is the domain name in your overall customer acquisition strategy?
In terms of customer acquisition, we believe accessibility is a huge factor. If you aren't able to provide products or solutions for everybody, then there is no point in doing it at all.
Having the name Bookmark shows our audience that anybody can use our platform, no matter what their past design or code skill is because everybody knows the term and already (in a way) "bookmarks" things online. Our URL is short, sweet, and easy to digest and remember, and there are so many intangible benefits to having this.
Does operating on a premium .COM make it easier to attract customers?
Studies have shown that people are more keen to click .com's than any other website. However, in my opinion, the .com itself is helpful, but it is not a make or break. Unless it gets you free traffic to your website, then the domain name should always be the most important part.
I have been seeing a lot of successful startups recently have ".io", and in Canada, we frequently see the use of ".ca". Although my advice would be to always play it safe and choose a ".com" for your website, I do believe that the website name itself will hold most of the weight in terms of trust and recognizability.
What is your advice for an entrepreneur looking to acquire a premium domain name for a business?
Make it easy to remember, short, and sweet. Max two words, but I would recommend only one word for the domain/company name. If you can find something that has a specific or vague relation to your business's industry then that is awesome, but it's not necessary - look at Google, for example, that wasn't even a real word.
Search the internet and make sure none of your competition or other companies are already using it as there is a strong possibility it will be trademarked. Also, save money and don't cheap out. As I said, a strong domain name is the first impression audiences have on your business, so you can have an all-star product and service but without a good domain name, you will struggle to build a large customer base.