Changing a Domain Name
This past weekend I had to change a domain name for a website I have been using and building for a while now. As you know I have been working on an NASCAR website for the past 2 years. When I built the website I did step by step instructions on my forum. I figured it would be good to document it step by step so others could learn how I build a site.
What I thought was a good idea at the time turned out to be a mistake in the long run. This was the first website I had built without it being keyword filled in the domain. I tried to be cute with the domain name and it came back to bite me and become a hindrance so I decided to make the change now since the website will always be mine.
When it came time to make the site I was thinking it would be good to have a catchy name. I named the website AwesomeWreckage.com. I came up with this name by combining two of the songs by my favorite band The Dollyrots “Because I'm Awesome” and “Wreckage”. It seemed like a catchy name to me and since there are wrecks in NASCAR I figured I could work with this name.
This was a big mistake as people thought I was glorifying the wrecks in NASCAR by calling them awesome. This is not what my site was about at all. I wanted to build a site where NASCAR fans could get information and talk about the races with other fans, maybe share some pics or some BBQ recipes and such.
Last weekend I had the pleasure of getting press passes to a race. When we picked them up at the track a few people frowned upon the name when we mentioned the domain and a few kind of shied away from us. This to me was a sign that something had to be done. It was almost embarrassing to mention what website I was representing while I was sitting in the press box.
When we got home we applied for some press passes for other tracks and all were denied. When one of the tracks told us it was because of the domain name I knew it was a time for a change. I really knew it before this but being thick headed and didn't want to admit failure led me to think it was OK to keep the name. Then I thought about it again and came to my senses.
I wanted to have the word Awesome in the URL and something related to the fans also. I spent a few hours in Nameboy searching and then it hit me and Awesomeracefans.com was born.
This name has actually 2 keywords in it “race and fans”. It should have been the name from the start but once again my brain freeze prevailed.
On April 1st we started switching over all the content to the new domain. It went OK except I decided to ditch the forum section for now. It wasn't working right anyway so the clean install was a better option anyway.
The one thing that was lost that I feel bad about was the cool logos and banners that my friend Auggie made for the old site, he does outstanding work.
The reason I am making this post is to show you that even someone who knows what they are doing can make mistakes too. I will bet that in the long run the new site will double in comparison to what the old site was anyway.