Choosing a domain name these days for a new web venture or microsite is an activity filed somewhere between painful and truly horrendous.
So what tools can you use to minimise headaches and the time spent on finding a domain name?

I’ve been recently brainstorming domain names and have mainly used the following to help me:


A fantastic Ajax-driven resource that you can use to quickly identify whether domains are available or not. It’s pretty much the best tool out there, in terms of speed, and usability.

If you find something that you like then in one click you’ll be directed to GoDaddy, which happens to be my registrar of choice. As simple and hassle-free as it gets, and much quicker than searching for domains on GoDaddy itself.


Another excellent resource that I use to help with brainstorming, although oftentimes the domains listed as ‘available’ may have already been snapped up (which is why it is good to use it in conjunction with Ajaxwhois).

With Nameboy you enter a primary word, and a secondary word. It will then combine the two, with or without hyphens (you choose), and suggest a bunch of alternatives.


This is the place to go if you want to find random five or six letter domains, or domains that include words that you specify, among other things. It also lists domains.

It includes useful thesaurus tools, similar to Nameboy, and for those shorter or premium domain names it will raise a flag if they are available on


A fast way of brainstorming domain names. Add a keyword and then choose from a list of word types, such as adjectives, nouns, verbs, or, more specifically: animals, objects, places, etc.

You can choose whether the main keyword should appear at the beginning or end of the domain name. In some cases it will make 100 suggestions. NameTumbler has GoDaddy inbuilt though again, I prefer the speed of Ajaxwhois to check on availability.