On choosing a good corporate identity

c: | f: /

There are some ropey domain names out there that should never have made it past the first round. Note to the world: think before you buy.

Worst company name I ever came across was wwwdot. They obviously thought they were being clever and edgy and all webby, but didn’t think through how difficult it would be to dictate the domain over the phone:

  • Customer: I’m considering putting a million pound contract your way. What’s your web address?
  • Employee: It’s www dot www dot dot com.
  • Customer: What? You got a stutter, boy?
  • Employee: No. It’s www dot, then another www, then the letters d-o-t dot com.
  • Customer: You lost me. Can you spell it?
  • Employee: double-u, double-u, double-u, dot, double-u, double-u, double-u, dee, ohh, tee, dot, see, ohh, emm. Though technically you don’t need the first www dot as your browser will add it for you.
  • Customer: So, two sets of www and dots? Or just one set?
  • Employee: The second dot is actually the word ‘dot’. Or it’s the first dot if you’ve omitted the first www dot.
  • Customer: Eh?
  • Employee: In full: whisky whisky whisky dot whisky whisky whisky delta octopus transformer dot cuttlefish ostrich marmite.
  • Customer: I’ll go elsewhere, thanks.

There are other things to avoid entirely, like the word “therapist”. I doubt anyone would want to be massaged by jennytherapist, regardless of how soft her touch is. Of course, given Internet Rule 34, perhaps it’s a selling point in some circles.

Compound words can also make hilarious combinations, especially words that end in ‘s’. This was most famously fallen foul by tech site “expertsexchange” where experts come to exchange knowledge. Or… something else. Another classic is penisland, for all your writing implement needs. Uhh, probably.

So if you’re in the market for a company or domain name, think about how it looks, how easy it is to dictate over the phone, and whether any words can be misconstrued when joined in different places. A few minutes of sanity checking now could save potential embarrassment or lost sales later.

Type your face off


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