Should this Austin-based massage company change domain names?

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Hi There! I’m back today with a few more companies that are getting it right — meaning using a domain to drive greater customer growth and revenue while shutting the door on their competition.

Today, I want to briefly explore a few options and share a few thoughts with you about a recent sign I finally noticed that uses a geo service or keyword domain name.

My first thought is derived around a North Austin-based company that branded itself North Austin Massage, having been in existence since 1984.

I encountered the company’s signage while on my home. The irony is that I’ve driven past this very multitude of business signs since 2005, and NEVER noticed the sign or the company’s domain.

That’s 11 years of passing the same sign and not noticing a thing about it. Talk about a waste of money and someone’s marketing, advertising and design agency should be fired.

Why I didn’t notice NorthAustinMassage.com for 11 years

There are a number of reasons that I didn’t take note of this company.

For instance, the sign is not positioned well to be seen from the highway and frontage road.

In addition, as you can see in the photos below, the signage is aged and the design is bland when placed amongst other businesses’ signage in the same shopping center.

Then there is the use of the NorthAustinMassage.com domain on the company’s signage that doesn’t lend itself legible when spelled using lowercase letters.

North Austin Massage

Wait, what happened to NorthAustinMassage.com?

As I was surprised at the domain find, I was more surprised that my wife knew the place existed.Heart & Sole Massage

My wife has frequents this business over the last year due to another massage company going out of business.

What’s more interesting is that she shared with me that the original owners of NorthAustinMassage.com had sold the company to a new owner.

In addition, the new owner has rebranded the company as Heart & Sole Massage.

This rebranding talk made me lift an eyebrow, especially knowing they had a decent domain name for where their business was located although not the best for the greater Austin area.

Personally, I like AustinMassage.com or AustinMassages.com. Neither domain is developed as of today. But I digress.

I arrived home and couldn’t wait to get to a web browser. Fortunately, when searching using the phrase “North Austin Massage”, the company’s website is ranked on page one of Google, and in a decent 2nd or 3rd place position.

I was also impressed to find that NorthAustinMassage.com redirected to HeartAndSoleMassage.com.

However, what I was not impressed by was the fact that the company’s newly rebranded domain does not pass the radio test.

When my wife mentioned their new name being Heart & Sole, I processed the name as “Heart And Soul”. Do you see the problem with the new name?

What if I typed in HeartAndSoulMassage.com or HeartAndSoulMassages.com? Let’s just say this company has now lost business to the competition.

Based on the name only, I’m of the opinion the company should not have rebranded the name from NorthAustinMassage.com.

Other domain name options better valued than the newly branded domain

Or if they wanted a different name altogether, then they could have chosen a geo service domain or a descriptive keyword domain such as the following:

In addition, owning the listed domains above would be a great defensive domain registration strategy and investment, eliminating the opportunity for competition to own and operate such domains.

I don’t recommend the following domain names, but they are available if one wanted to use different domains for TV, billboard or newsletters to measure their effectiveness and ROI:

Instead of a name change, this business should keep the NorthAustinMassage.com domain and name while simply introducing a more fresh and appealing design update.

If I were the owner, I would STRONGLY reconsider a different name than Heart & Sole Massage, especially if their future is to open additional locations throughout the greater Austin area.

Alvin Brown
Alvin is a serial entrepreneur and digital strategist with an avid love for domain name consulting. As the Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of DNAdverts.com, his assignment is to ensure business and personal brands don't suffer the consequences of common domain name pitfalls.

As a domain investor and business consultant, Alvin actively participates in daily domain auctions. Outside of auctions, he passionately shares his views, opinions, and vision for how businesses should and should not use domain names to generate greater customer growth and revenue.