It is one of the first things that i wanted to find out when i started my online business and so i reached for the computer and typed into google “How to purchase domain name”. Now what i pulled up was a barage of different companies telling me that i could purchase a domain from them for next to nothing and have my choice of .org or, .com or .net. etc etc etc.. But there were so many other questions i wanted to know like..
1: Should i use a .com or .co.uk
2: Does this really matter?
3: how do you use the domain once you have it?
4: should it be a keyword rich domain or just a name?
5: where is the best place to purchase one?
6: do you get a mailbox with a domain purchase?
so in the following post i am going to explain a few key points that may help you on your journey to finding and buying a domain for your business..
What is a Domain?
Ok so lets cut out all the technological jargon and give it to you in simple terms. A domain is used as your unique address to an internet server (or Host) where people will be able to see your website that is hosted with them by typing in your domain in the bar at the top of your computer. You can also think of it like this.. if the internet was a road map and the webpage was a building or place then the domain is the unique address for that point on the map!
What is hosting? well that is for another post but lets just say that this is where your website will live…do you need a website to use a domain?…No you dont..you can set up a domain and have an email box set up for that domain without having to have a website..
Where to buy your domain.
There are lots of places to buy your domains out there but you shouldn’t just go for the one that is the cheapest. There are many factors and some of which are listed below.
You should choose a domain providor who..
1: Doesn’t hide any fees from you
2: Gives you direct access to your whois record as well as your registrar locks, auth codes and you should even be able to edit your DNS settings like hostname records, mail exchangers and nameservers.
3: Offers a FREE whois service and also they should never sell on any of your data.
Interestingly enough did you know that some registrars will try and upsell you privacy services for whois and place there own details in this spot..in the eyes of the registrys oversight body like ICANN the owner of the domain is the person listed on whois..therefore in the eyes of the law you do not actually own the domain…scary hey!
However do not worry too much as there are many legitimate and good providers out there, A few that i would reccomend are Namecheap and Hostgator. They are both good but if i was to opt for ease of use and support etc i would go with Hotgator but feel free to check out others too..
Should you use a .com or .co.uk etc etc?
There are so many different endings to domains and what with the new domain names available such as .life or .plumber it is now more than ever confusing as to which one you should choose. I am going to make it simple here for one very simple reason and some may disagree but i would say that the best ending for a domain is definitely .com My reasoning for this is down to search-ability and by this i mean that Google, Bing and Yahoo seem (at the moment) to be able to index .com domains a lot easier and with greater success..meaning that you stand a better chance of ranking on the first page of Google with a .com name than anything else and after all its about getting traffic to your website in the long run..
There is some differing opinions as to whether you should have a short memorable name like www.thepub.com or whether you should use keywords in your domain like www.local-pub-in-bedford.com. The general consensus used to be that using keywords in your domain would make you show up better on search engines however with the latest Google updates etc it is proving that content really is king as far as ranking is concerned. My thought is that maybe you could try a bit of both. Buy a keyword rich domain but also have a short company name attached to the same site so you can easily use that domain for advertising material etc.. I believe the jury is still out though as to which is more effective.
Using a mailbox with your domain
Most domain providers will be able to offer you a mailbox service and you do not need to have a website to use them. I have found that Gandi offer you 5 email boxes when you purchase a domain through them and the mailbox isn’t too bad as far as capacity goes with 1GB..plenty for your emails!. However one thing that is overlooked by many is that Gmail actually offers a service where you can use your own domain with their mailbox system which is in my opinion probably one of the best email systems around and it costs around $10 per month.
If you are looking at buying a domain the chances are that you are looking to set up a website, so another way to get a domain name and a website set up and running easily is with Wealthy affiliate. You can find more information on them in my review here
Domain names are a relatively simple purchase to make but getting the right domain is another thing…I hope that this has given you some food for thought and as always please drop me a comment.. there are also some links below to recommended companies that sell domains but also who host websites for you as well. They are both worth a look in my opinion. Please note that if you do click on pone of my links to hostgator i will receive a few pennies for referring you but if you don’t want to go through one of my links you can simply search for them on google. I hope you choose my link thou as it would be lovely to know that i have helped you in some way.
Thanks for taking the time to read my post.