A Domain Name is the name of the website. The name ideally will tell people what your website is about. With so many websites now on the web you have to be extra careful in choosing a Domain Name. First you must do a search to make sure the Domain is available. A Domain Name must be registered with a Domain Registrar.
The larger Web Hosting Companies are Domain Registrars and you can purchase a Domain Name at the time when you sign up for Website Hosting.
Before you sign up do a search to find out information about the Domain Name you would like to use. The best database to search is WHOIS.com.
If the Domain Name you want to use is availble you can purchase it from WHOIS.com but you will have to open an account and manage the Domain Name yourself.
If you see that this Domain Name is available and you would like to use it, this is the Domain Name you use after you have decided to Sign up with a Hosting Company.
Which should you do first? Sign up with a Hosting Company and then choose a Domain Name, or choose a Domain Name and then sign up for a Hosting Company.
My recommendation; decide on a Domain Name first and do the research on that Domain to make sure it’s available to use, then sign up with a Hosting Company.
The Domain Name must not resemble another Domain.
Find a Domain Name that is descriptive. For example;if your website is about health and fitness do a word wheel. Look up the words “health” and “fitness” in the dictionary and find the synonyms of “health and “fitness.” This will give you inspiration to clearly define the name of your website.
Using Your Personal Name
The name you have is unique to you, but I’m sure you’ve noticed there are other people with the same name as yours. In that case use a middle initial.
John Edward Smith
John E Smith
J. E. Smith
As you can see a Domain Name needs a lot of thought before you sign up with a web Hosting Company. This is why I recommend you decide on the Domain Name first, and then sign up. Use the WHOIS.com database first.
What you don’t want is to sign up with a web Hosting Company and think you have the perfect Domain Name and someone else has this exact same Domain Name. Then you’ll get a letter from their lawyers and you’ll have to use another Domain.
The top domain hierarchy is .com meaning for commercial use. There are other extensions. You base the choice of a Domain Name on:
- Is it confusingly similar to another Domain Name
- Is the Domain Name descriptive
Now that you’ve found a Domain Name, your next stop on the website journey is signing up with a Hosting Company.