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How To Find And Buy A Domain Name

In today’s world, every serious business needs to be online.

No matter what you do yourself, an online presence of some sort is absolutely important to the success of your business.

There are many channels you can use to create an online presence for your business.

Whether it's a business or personal website – you have a chance to bring in your audience under one platform.

No matter how you want to look at it, a good website secures your business’s presence online. A good website can do anything for your business.

You can create and generate traffic, produce content, make sales, and host many other things.

A personal or business website gives you real estate on the web, allowing you to be found from all over the world by those that need you and your services.

When it comes to getting a website, however, the first most important thing is to find a great domain name.

What is a Domain Name

Your domain name is the URL address of your website.

It is a public address where users of the internet can locate and access your website.

As an analogy, a domain name is like your house address, while a web hosting is a house itself.

For example, “yourdomain.com” where your audience or internet users can look for your brand over the internet quickly.

So, you can drop your address anywhere, and anyone that follows it ends up at your house.

In fact, domain names are used to identify and find computers on the internet.

In reality, your website is stored under an IP address, which is simply a string of numbers.

However, we find it difficult to remember a series of numbers, which is where domain names come in.

A domain name is used to identify an entity on the internet instead of using an IP address.

Typically, domain names are made up of combinations of letters, topped off with extensions like .com, .io, .org, and much more.

When purchasing a domain name, keep originality in mind. A unique web address (URL) will ensure you stand out among the rest.

In order to use a domain name, it must be registered first.

Every domain name is different from another and must be unique.

Two websites cannot have the same domain name. If someone types in yourdomain.com, it will go to your website and no one else’s.

Components of a Domain Name

Let’s look at what makes up a domain name.

If your domain name is “YourBlogName.com.” the “YourBlogName” part is called an SLD or Second Level Domain.

It can consist of any combination of alphanumeric characters (a-z, A-Z, 0-9) and hyphens that are surrounded by other characters and have no space between them.

The “.com” part of the address is called the TLD or Third Level Domain.

While .com remains the most popular, there are several others, such as .org, .net, .edu, .io and quite several others.

There are also TLDs for various countries/regions like .uk for the United Kingdom, .ca for Canada, etc.

How Much Does a Domain Cost?

The exact price you pay for your domain name depends on how popular it is.

Very popular ones like hotels.com or business.com have been sold for millions of dollars.

Still, not to worry, you’ll probably not be spending anything close to that.

Chances are, you’ll be spending less than $20 per year on your domain name.

However, you should factor the cost of acquiring and renewing the domain name into your budget.

Buying a domain name is done via a domain name registrar.

What is a Domain Registrar

A domain registrar is simply a company that manages how domain names are reserved.

The upfront and add-on prices vary from registrar to registrar, generally speaking.

However, popular TLDs like .com and other country-specific TLDs tend to cost more than others.

Domain Prices

Take a look at some of the popular domain registrars and their prices.

Of course, you need to remember that all these are simply introductory prices. No matter the registrar, the price to maintain and renew the ownership of your domain will increase after the first year.

Take Hostgator; for example, the price for a .com domain shoots up from $12.95 to $17.99, while GoDaddy’s .us prices shoot from $3.49 to $19.99.

No matter how simple it may seem, renewal fees are always built to get more of your money.

Registrar.com.org.net.us
NameCheap$8.88/year
($10.98/year on renewal)
$12.98/year
($14.98/year on renewal)
$11.98/year
($14.98/year on renewal)
$3.88/year
($10.48/year on renewal)
GoDaddy$11.99/year
($17.99/year on renewal)
$10.99/year
($20.99/year on renewal)
$14.99/year
($19.99/year on renewal)
$3.49/year
($19.99/year on renewal)
HostGator$12.95/year
($17.99/year on renewal)
$12.95/year
($17.99/year on renewal)
$12.95/year
($17.99/year on renewal)
$5.95/year
($17.99/year on renewal)

Privacy and Protection Costs

When someone registers a domain, the registrar is required to provide that user’s contact information (name, email address, and phone number) be added to the Whois database.

This helps publicly lists the owners of each domain name online.

It is essential that you provide your information accurately.

However, it is not required to be easily accessible to everyone.

When you buy a domain you register to each that provides carrying degrees of privacy to make sure your personal information is not visible on the whois websites.

This directly protects you from spam phone calls and messages.

Some domain servers offer full privacy on the database for free of cost.

Other websites offer free service for the first year only.

It’s rare to find a reputable registrar offering free Whois protection after the first year. This is why you need to choose your Domain registrar with open-mindedness.

So there you have it, how to get a domain, as well as what it costs. So now, go out there and get the perfect domain name and start creating.

How to Choose a Great Domain name

Selecting the perfect domain name is an important part of creating your online presence.

Before selecting and setting up your website, you should put some thought into your choice of a domain name.

Here are some tips that will help you pick the perfect domain name.

Carry out Extensive Research

Your website, and by extension, your domain name is more for your users than you.

Therefore you need to study your niche and find out the average user in that niche looks for. Study the popular keywords and search terms in that niche.

This will give you some ideas on the possible domain names that you can use for your website.

The goal of this research is to come up with as many possible options as you can.

Ideally, you should have between 3 to 10 different possible domain names that you can use

Make Your Domain Name Catchy and Easy to Remember

You should try to make your domain name as easy to remember as possible.

Don’t go for any name that is unnecessarily long or too difficult to pronounce. Your domain name should be as catchy and short as it can be.

This will attract visitors and ensure that they remember it.

To test if your domain name is catchy and short enough, pronounce your domain name and ask a friend to write down what he thinks the address will be.

They should be able to spell it right without needing any help.

While it might be nice to spell your domain name in a funny and quirky way, you should avoid it as much as you can.

Avoid any chance of your users typing in the wrong address. For example, if your domain name is kwikfood.com, chances are, someone might type in “quickfood.com.”

Imagine a situation where someone purchases this domain and then clones your website for nefarious purposes.

Yeah, that’ll be really bad. This is why you need to pick a domain name that is catchy yet easy to remember.

Stick to a .com TLD

Your TLD is also an important part of your domain name, and there are many possible options. Of course, a .com TLD is still the most common, but there are others that you can use.

In your best interest, though, you should stick with a .com TLD.

It’s the most popular and the one that your users are likely to remember.

In fact, for many people, their brains automatically add a .com moniker to any domain name.

Chances are, your users will still add a .com TLD to your domain name, even if you are using a different one, and once again, you want to avoid the possible mimicking of your website.

Avoid Infringing on Trademarks

You need to ensure that you are not infringing on any trademark with your choice of a domain name.

It is important that you don’t register a domain that is similar to a popular or well-established brand.

For example, if your business has anything to do with Cola, you don’t want to register anything that looks or sounds similar to Coca-Cola.

Using any domain name that can mislead your users to think you are representing another website or brand can land you in legal troubles.

Best advice, avoid it.

Don’t use hyphens or numbers

Sometimes the domain name that you want to choose is not available, and you might be tempted to just add a hyphen or some numbers to make it unique. Don’t.

The first major really reason for this is that your users can confuse numbers for letters or one symbol for another.

For example, let’s assume that you own a coffee shop called O2.

Chances are, users might type in the number 0, instead of the letter O.

In fact, if the website for this, an open coffee shop was o2.com, you could have a user typing in 02.com or zerotwo.com.

It is, therefore, good nomenclature practice, to avoid numbers and hyphens totally.

Check Domain Availability

Once you have a list of all the possible domains that you want to use, you need to carry out a search to find if those domain names are actually available.

This is a very simple, but nonetheless important step.

There’s no point thinking you’ve found the best possible domain name, only to find that someone else has purchased the domain and has been using it since 2010.

Luckily, the site your on right now will help you find the perfect domain name for you. So go ahead to the search bar and start typing a combination of words that would fit best your business idea.

Locate and Purchase Close alternatives

Once you have a domain name in mind, you should also plan to purchase related domains.

For example, mistyped variations of your domain name should be bought so that any traffic going there is redirected to your own website.

You don’t want to lose the bulk of your traffic because of a mistyped word, after all.

Amazon and Facebook have something in common, with amzon.com and fb.com redirecting you to Amazon and Facebook, respectively.

Create Social Media Platforms With the Same Name

You want to remain consistent with your name all over the internet, and it’s for the best your domain name, as well as usernames on various social platforms, remain the same.

That means that before you pick your perfect domain name, check if it’s available on all the social media platforms that you plan to use.

Fortunately, when searching for a domain name on this site you get to see on which social networks your name is available.

If for nothing else, at least to keep the names locked down.

At the very least, reserve your account on three of the biggest social networks.

It can be any combination of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Quora, or Pinterest.

This is important so that you don’t lose access to it in the future.

Some More Naming Tips

How to Buy a Domain Name

Here we’ve made a list of steps in your process in order to choose a perfect domain name and buy your domain.

Here’s how to buy a perfect domain name:

  1. Choose a reliable domain registrar (like Namecheap).
  2. Use our tool above to find a perfect domain name (along with our tips listed above).
  3. Run a domain name search.
  4. Pick the best available option.
  5. Once you click on the name you liked you’d see the available domain options (TLDs).
  6. Click on the “buy” button with the domain TLD you like and complete the process.
  7. Verify the ownership of your new domain.

Final Thoughts

Your domain name as an online entrepreneur is going to be the long term commitment to earning money online and the long term development of your brand.

By using our guide, we’ll make it easier for you to choose a great domain name and start your online journey on the right foot. Take your time to research and most of all have fun naming your domain!