Does Your Domain Name Pass The Radio Test?

If your domain name fails the radio test, it could be costing you word of mouth business.

Does your domain name pass the radio test? The radio test is simply this: if a potential customer heard your domain name on the radio, would he or she be able to spell it and recall it later?

If the answer is no, you may be losing business.

Here's some examples of what I mean.

Suppose you own a business selling widgets and use the domain name,, for your website.

A name like that would never pass the radio test. Is it or or or You would literally have to spell it out on the radio, on the phone, and in person. Not just once, but every time.

Here's another one: That would never pass the radio test. Try saying it out loud. Yellow dash submarines dot co dot uk.

I come across businesses using domain names like the above all the time. You must do so too.

Radio advertising isn't cheap. According to Radioworks, running a 30 second commercial will cost you anything from £500 a week on a local radio station to £10,000 or more on a national radio station. And that's before production costs are factored in. And yet businesses are willing to pay big to promote a domain name that will confuse customers at best, lose them at worse. 

When thinking about your own domain name, you might think the radio test doesn't apply because you have no intention of advertising on the radio.

But when you see radio test, think word of mouth.

Research by consumer market specialists, Nielsen, found the most credible advertising comes straight from the people we know and trust. 83% of global respondents say they completely or somewhat trust recommendations made by friends and family.

You presumably want your customers to recommend you to friends and family, perhaps business associates.

When doing so, how easy would it be for them to recall and pass on your web address?

And how easy would it be for the person told about your business to recall it at a later date?

That's why passing the radio test is a key requirement of a good domain name.

If you have to spell it out, say it contains the digit 4 and not the word four, explain what a dash is, your domain name could be costing you business.

And that's why it makes sense to use the best domain name possible for your business. And by best I mean a domain name that a customer is going to get instantly without any explanation whatsoever.

Brandwise can help you find the perfect domain name for your business.

If you are a startup looking for a name for a business, we can help make sure it passes the radio test from day one.

If you're an established business, we can help you rebrand. Nothing needs to be wasted. If you already have a website, a new domain name can be redirected to it until you are ready to make the move to the new name permanently. And then you can redirect the old name so that no business is lost.

If you require help or advice choosing a domain name, we're here to help. Drop us an email at and say hello.

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