How can we make sure our domain name's unique?

It's important to get a unique domain name for your business. Being distinctive will help customers and others find you on the internet. However, it's not unusual for more than one business to operate under the same name. And that can be problematic when it comes to choosing a domain name.

Check for issues before you register

Before registering the domain name you've got in mind, it's important to check whether anyone else already has a business or brand with the same name. Do an internet search and check with the Chamber of Commerce and with trademark registries such as the Benelux merkenbureau.

Don't wind up getting sued

If you don't check before registering and you start using a domain name that's confusingly like someone else's registered brand or trading name, you might get sued. As well as having financial implications, that could result in you being ordered to stop using your domain name and/or to hand it over to the brand or trading name owner.

What to do if someone else uses your business name

Of course, it might be the other way around: someone else might use your brand or trading name in their domain name. If that happens, you can take legal action or use the Dispute Resolution System for .nl Domain Names.

Prevent on-line brand abuse

As a business, of course you also want to prevent criminals cashing in on your carefully constructed public image. An unpleasant experience with a fake webshop can persuade a customer to treat your promotional mail as junk or decide against visiting your real site. The risk is that customers stop trusting your brand. With serious implications for brand value, reputation and ultimately earnings. One way to prevent on-line brand abuse is to use our Domain Name Surveillance Service (DBS). Then, as soon as anyone registers a domain name similar to your brand name or domain name, we'll alert you. Read more about the DBS.

Do the checks described above before setting up your business. Then register your chosen domain name, and after that register the business with the Chamber of Commerce.

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