Brand Protection Extends Beyond Typo Domain Names

Many companies that do business online know that it’s important (maybe even critical) to buy typos of their company name. Just type in different variations of to see how I feel about that (,, and maybe even a couple I forgot about). Some people are bad spellers, have fat fingers, or have other issues that cause them to accidentally mistype a domain name. When the company owns its typos, it doesn’t have to worry about losing this traffic.

However, typos aren’t the only defensive domain names a company should consider when making strategic domain acquisitions. Companies should also take what their customers call their company into consideration as well. After all, consumers will be typing the domain name into their browsers if they don’t use a search engine. I purchased the shortened version of my father’s business name (not really a generic that people would type in randomly), and surprisingly it receives a bit of traffic every month.

There are plenty of other companies who employ this domain strategy as well. I found some of these examples of smart domain buys, even though some of these companies don’t do much business online:

Salvatore Ferragamo –
Mercedes Benz –
McDonald’s –
JC Penny –
Radio Shack –
Dairy Queen –

One example of a company that may have missed out on purchasing a domain name is Bed, Bath, & Beyond, when sold on Sedo for $50,000 to a company other than BB&B. Several years back, there was a northeast retail chain called LeeJay Bed and Bath (now out of business), but most customers called it Bed and Bath. Additionally, many customers refer to Bed, Bath and Beyond as Bed and Bath, and if they do it aloud, they probably do it online as well.

Although $50k is a lot to spend on a domain name that isn’t the exact business name, I think this would have been a smart buy for BBB. You have to assume anyone typing in is looking for a bed and bath store (if not BBB), and Bed Bath and Beyond probably has everything a visitor would want. Considering that the name still gets over 5k visitors a month and the store likely spends a whole lot of money on Adwords, they could have saved money in the long run, rather than spending it on PPC links on forever.

The price of other domain names is something that should be considered when trying to protect a brand. If the business is referred to by a common phrase or term, and the matching domain name would cost more than the LTV of the potential lost customers, then the money would be spent more wisely elsewhere.

Another consideration in this is purchasing alternate extensions for brand protection, and I will discuss that in a post later on this week. Someone asked me for my thoughts on that topic last week, and I will discuss those later.

Elliot Silver
Elliot Silver
About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has closed eight figures in deals. Please read the Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest. Reach out to Elliot: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn


  1. Yes, companies should anticipate typos before launching a site. I had a two-word .COM domain priced at $250 about six weeks ago. Over the last year it has averaged 5-10 visits monthly. However, several months ago some company registered the plural version of my domain. IMO the singular version makes more sense. It appears they launched a commercial site in August as I saw a spike in traffic in latter August. In September it looks like my site will receive close to 400 visits with a CTR of nearly 80% and CPC of nearly $0.15 (~$40). Obviously I have adjusted the domain’s price several times though I’m still cautious as to how long the CTR will remain that high. Normally most of my parked domains only see a CTR in the range of 15-20%.

  2. Analyzing which domains are valuable for a brand is not one of the simplest tasks, but, for sure, it is essential for proper online brand protection. It often implies statistic data, keywords and semantic analysis, and typos get not excluded from this equation’s solution.

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