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May 27, 2017 (Sat)

How are the top 10 brands in China using domain names?


Image courtesy of Pixabay.com


I read a news story on the top 10 brands in China just few days ago. As someone interested in studying domain names, I certainly want to find out what domain names these brands are using, so that I can learn something from them.

According to the news, China's State Council earlier this year designated May 10 as "Chinese Brand Day", which shows the importance of brand. China already accounts for 110 of the world's 500 biggest companies. So, creating a Chinese brand is to create a global brand. By the same token, creating a Chinese domain name is to create a global domain name. When creating a domain name, care must be taken to make sure the domain name can be used globally.

The news story picked up the best brand in each of 10 industries: Geely (吉利), Laoganma (老干妈), Haidilao (海底捞), Liushenhualushui (六神花露水), Pechoin (百雀羚), XDF (新东方), Gymangel (积木宝贝), Moutai (茅台), Haohaizi (好孩子), and Yunnanbaiyao (云南白药). I used Baidu search to find their corporate websites, and then analyzed their domain names.

Here is the result.

[Autos]
BrandDomain nameDomain lengthMatch brand?Global readiness
GeelyGeely.com5YesEasy to pronounce in English
Domain name uses mainstream extension .com, is short and solid, and brand-matching. Although it is not Pinyin-based, it can be used both inside and outside China. Geely.cn, Jili.com, and Jili.cn should be secured.

[Food]
BrandDomain nameDomain lengthMatch brand?Global readiness
LaoganmaLaoganma.com.cn8YesEnglish pronunciation may be OK
Domain name uses non-mainstream extension .com.cn, so upgrade to Laoganma.com or even LGM.com is recommended. Domain length is good, and 3-word Pinyin names are very popular in China. Consumers outside China may not be able to remember Laoganma easily, but LGM.com can be used to solve this problem. Laoganma.cn should be secured .

[ Restaurant]
BrandDomain nameDomain lengthMatch brand?Global readiness
HaidilaoHaidilao.com8YesEnglish pronunciation may be OK
Domain name uses mainstream extension .com. Domain length is good, and 3-word Pinyin names are very popular in China. Consumers outside China may not be able to remember Haidilao easily, but HDL.com can be used to solve this problem. Haidilao.cn should be secured .

[Daily necessities]
BrandDomain nameDomain lengthMatch brand?Global readiness
LiushenhualushuiNot found---
Both Baidu and Google searches failed to locate the company's corporate website. Brand name is quite long, and not easy for consumers outside China to easily remember. Company needs to spend time to come up with a solution, such as using Liushen.com, LS.com and the like.

[Costmetics]
BrandDomain nameDomain lengthMatch brand?Global readiness
BaiqiaolingPechoin.com7NoEnglish pronunciation may be OK
Domain name uses mainstream extension .com. Domain length is good, but not brand-matching. To make it easy for Chinese consumers to remember the name, company can also use Baiqiaoling.com or even better BQL.com.

[Education]
BrandDomain nameDomain lengthMatch brand?Global readiness
XindongfangXDF.cn3YesEnglish pronunciation no problem
Domain name uses mainstream extension .cn, is short and solid, and brand-matching. However, .cn is not suitable for use outside China, so upgrade to XDF.com is recommended. Xindongfang.com and Xindongfang.cn should be secured.

[Early child education]
BrandDomain nameDomain lengthMatch brand?Global readiness
JinmubaobeiGymangel.cn8NoYes
Domain name is formed by two words (Gym + Angel), which may be a bit difficult for Chinese consumers to remember. Also, , .cn is not suitable for use outside China, so upgrade to Gymangel.com or even JMBB.com is recommended. JMBB.cn, Jinmubaobei.com, Jinmubaobei.cn should be secured.

[Beverages]
BrandDomain nameDomain lengthMatch brand?Global readiness
MoutaiChina-moutai.com12NoEnglish pronunciation is OK
Domain name is long and not brand-matching. It contains the symbol "-" (hyphen), which is not popular outside China especially in the USA. Upgrade to Moutai.com is recommended. Moutai.cn should be secured.

[Maternal and child supplies]
BrandDomain nameDomain lengthMatch brand?Global readiness
HaohaiziHaohaizi.com8YesEnglish pronunciation is difficult
Domain name uses mainstream extension .com. Consumers outside China may not be able to remember Haohaizi easily. They can use HHZ.com to solve this problem. Haohaizi.cn should be secured.

[Health care]
BrandDomain nameDomain lengthMatch brand?Global readiness
YunnanbaiyaoYunnanbaiyao.com.cn12YesToo long, and English pronunciation is not easy
Domain name uses non-mainstream extension .com.cn, so upgrade to Yunnanbaiyao.com is recommended. Consumers outside China may not be able to remember Yunnanbaiyao. YNBY.com, although not a perfect solution, may be used. Yunnanbaiyao.cn and YNBY.cn should be secured.

After looking at the domain names of these 10 top brands, I feel there is still a lot of work for them to do in the domain name area. Domain name is the entrance to a company's corporate world, so it must match the brand, and be easy to remember both inside and outside China. For Chinese companies, the basic domain strategy is to secure both of the mainstream extensions .com and and .cn. They also need to make sure their brand and domain name can be easily pronounced in English for use outside China.

Source: http://finance.newssc.org/system/20170519/002184354.html

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Note: This post is a translation of my Chinese post of the same date with focus on China.