Branded domain name or keyword-rich URL – which is better? When you are looking at the search results – the websites which rank higher nearly always have a mention of the keyword in the URL.
A branded domain is one which is based on the company name, this is what people recognise and would increase your brand awareness. There are many advantages of using your brand name for your business domain name; it is often easy to remember, it maintains your brand consistency, it is more professional and tends to attract more loyal visitors.
From a search engine optimisation point of view I would say always choose a domain name that includes your keywords as this will give you a boost in the rankings as it makes your site more relevant.
For example, if I wanted to go for brand / individual awareness with my site I could have chosen the following domain name: www.samantha-woolstencroft.co.uk. However I have chosen to go for www.sams-seo.co.uk this includes a little bit of self-promotion as well as the keyword for SEO.
There are many SEO people out there who recommend brand based URLs, however I recommend keyword specific domain names because search engines place emphasis on having keywords in the domain.