Minority-Owned Businesses Gain an Edge with TrueName Descriptive Domains

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Easy-to-Remember, Descriptive Domains Are Key to Successful Digital Branding and SEO Strategies


Driftaway Coffee’s domain, driftaway.coffee, is precise and to the point, eliminating the need for additional characters in its URLs. “We’re very passionate about having a descriptive domain,” say Suyog and Anu, co-founders of Driftaway. “With drift, away, and coffee, we can explain our entire business.”


Shawn “Doc Rock” Boyd, community manager of Ecamm, macOS’ live streaming app, doc.rock points out that businesses can also use descriptive domains to direct users to specific content. For example, “doc.rock” takes web users directly to his YouTube channel. When you have a long and convoluted domain name, it makes life difficult,” he says. “If people are searching for livestreaming, and you show up in the search with a short and memorable domain name like docrock.live, you have a higher likelihood that people will know what you do and click on it.


Rudy Ellis, Switchboard Live CEO, chose a descriptive domain, switchboard.live, during a rebrand to “clearly communicate the live streaming and content space.” He adds that his company, a Google for Startups Black Founders Fund recipient, has also benefited from increased visibility on the web. “Our domain name definitely gives us an advantage. First of all, we know it works for SEO. We get a lot of inbound traffic, and most of it is organic. We attribute that to our domain name,” Ellis says. 


AMP Community, a tech company that provides advisory services and accelerator programming for diverse entrepreneurs, uses descriptive domains to help minority business owners find their resources, such as the newly launched amp.directory of minority founders and VCs.


Wrap Life, which offers authentic African headwraps, chose thewrap.life as its domain. Nnenna Stella, founder, says, “I wanted to have life in the name because it would need to be sold as a lifestyle brand.  After changing to .life, we doubled sales of the previous 10 months in 2 months.  Our domain is different, our product is different. All those things tell a really unique story that our customers love.”


Shannon Morton, CEO of Black Women Lead, which amplifies black women’s voices and partners with nonprofits to meet a range of needs, says their descriptive domain blackwomenlead.black has “supported marketing efforts and branding and has improved search engine optimization (SEO).”

Creating a brand online? There is one fundamental truth you must know.

Smart entrepreneurs know the right domain name can be the key to success. 

What do a baby and a business have in common? They each need a name. Parents take great care in selecting a name that reflects their history, values, or personality, and entrepreneurs should be no different.

Picking a name for your business is not only one of the first steps–it’s arguably the most important: the right name can be catchy or clever, or it quickly communicates what you have to offer. Whatever you choose, that name is the key to establishing your brand.

But far too often, people are forced to make difficult compromises when putting their business online. While entrepreneurs of old expected that they had to have a dot-com domain name to be legitimate, the dot-com marketplace has become a vast collection of names that are in use or held by cybersquatters, so many business owners wind up with a bloated domain name that does not reflect their mission and brand.

So how do you build a new brand in a crowded dot-com world? You don’t.

The tech-savvy and future-facing brands of today are setting themselves up for success in the age of “digital-first” by understanding that a key tactic in creating a brand that is ubiquitous is to ensure that everything their brand stands for is reflected perfectly in their choice of domain name–and that the power of the once highly-prized dot-com address is now greatly diminished.

Stake Your Claim and Be True to Your Name

More than 1,000 new keyword extensions have been introduced in recent years, exceeding the branding power of decaying legacy top-level domains like dot-com, dot-org, and dot-net

Entrepreneurs now have a wide variety of options when choosing highly brandable, relevant, and modern domains like .live, .guru, or .lawyer that can be utilized across all digital platforms and packaging to drive brand affinity and familiarity within a target niche. 

In this modern era, a brand’s domain name is increasingly the key to its growth, how it resonates with its key market, its memorability, and brand perception. Ultimately, a domain name represents a brand the same way a storefront or staff would have decades ago. And now that many businesses have a majority of their audience touchpoints through digital channels, a brand now is a domain as much as a domain is a brand.

One Phish, Two Phish. Don’t Get Screwed Phish.

Have you ever received an email asking you to log into your credit card’s website and update your account and password information, except you don’t have a card with that issuer? That’s a common scam known as “phishing.” Hackers looking to steal passwords and sensitive financial information coined the term back in the 90s. They send out thousands of fake emails as “bait” in the hopes of getting someone to “bite” by clicking on the links inside.

Remember when hackers painted a big red bullseye on Target back in 2013? A single click on a link in an email led to a massive data breach, exposing the sensitive information of 110 million Target customers. 

Scams like this affect small and medium-sized businesses and individuals as well with alarming regularity. Two of the most common ways people fall victim are:

  • Opening an email and clicking on a link to a login page that looks authentic, but it’s not.
  • Following a link to a site you visit all the time, even though the address has been altered subtly–a practice known as “domain spoofing.” 

The good news is that people are now more likely to try and confirm an email authenticity before volunteering any sensitive information. As for domain spoofing, the best defense is to select a domain name that guards against phishing attacks.

TrueName™ branded domains include a robust security technology – at no additional cost to customers – that blocks domain imposters before they strike. This proactive protection called homographic blocking prevents homographs—fraudulent lookalike domain names that substitute letters or numbers with characters from Latin, Greek, and Cyrillic script tables for the purpose of malicious activity.