How To Create Your Own Domain Name
If you want to promote your face or your name online, why not create a personal website using a customized domain? A personal domain is where you use your own name, followed by a top level domain like .COM or .ME.
The best way to start building a personal brand is to use your own name. And, because this specific domain uses your first name and last name together, you may have more of a chance of landing it. Simple, and easy!
Another way to create a personalized domain name is to use your name in conjunction with a hobby, such as johnsmith.actor, or hannahrowe.cricket. There are so many options out there, ready and waiting to be snapped up.
Use A Catchphrase Slogan Or Keyword
If there isn’t an abbreviated option available, you can register a domain name that encompasses a slogan or catchphrase such as PlumbingDoneRight.com. You can even use an SEO keyword phrase that integrates your location with something like PortlandPlumbing.com. Take some time to brainstorm options and check to see what is available.
Do Your Due Diligence
You want to verify if a domain is safe and valuable before you buy it. Doing your due diligence is important because an otherwise good domain name may have
- Trademark restrictions
- Been marked for spam or security vulnerabilities
It may also have other issues.
Dont panic. You can use some tools to verify a domains viability before buying it.
A domain must not violate ICANNs trademark policy. That is, if your registered domain name carries the trademark of an existing business or entity, then they can claim the domain name or ask you to delete the domain name.
Before you buy a domain name, do a trademark search on the United States Patent and Trademark Office website. You want to ensure the name isnt associated with a registered trademark.
Next, you want to ascertain the domain has not been used by spammers in the past or posed any cybersecurity threats. For this verification, you can use MXToolBox to generate a domain health report.
If the domain name isnt trademarked and its healthy, you want to delve into the historical data of the domain name. Specifically, youll want to figure out
- Who registered the domain name
- When it was registered
- The last time the ownership was renewed
- The domain name service hosting it
Use a whois checker to find this information. As pointed out earlier, Domain.com offers you a free whois lookup tool. It also provides links to other useful whois lookup resources to help you find exactly what you want.
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Select Your Domain Extension
Also known as top-level domains , domain extensions function as a quick identification for certain elements of a website such as its purpose, owner or geographic location. There are five official types of TLDs, with generic top-level domains accounting for the vast majority of the 366 million registered domains worldwide.
The most popular choices among gTLDs are .org, .com and .net, making them the easiest to memorize and recall and thus positioning them as the primary options to consider when registering your domain name. However, you should also consider the role your geographical area plays in your online presence and how you can connect your site and branding efforts in a creative manner.
If your business or offering is heavily based on a specific region from which you dont plan to expand in the future, consider purchasing a country-code top-level domain instead – such as .it for Italy or .fr for France. Likewise, you might choose to prioritize creativity over technicalities and register your domain name with a generic extension that doesnt quite reflect the essence of your website but strengthens your branding – such as Alphabets abc.xyz.
Going back to the previous example, if the animal rescues preferred name choice is taken, they could try switching their extension to a local one, swapping around the words, or adding their location in the name itself. For example, whiskersrescuelondon.com or whiskersrescue.co.uk.
Assert Your Rights If You Already Own The Trademark
If you are already in business and want to use your existing business name as your domain name, then you may have the upper hand in a dispute with someone who’s already using the name online.
Under trademark law, the first person to use a trademark in commerce is considered the owner. So if you used the name to market your products or services before the domain name registrant started using its domain name, you may be able to prevent that registrant from continuing to use the name.
If you are a trademark holder and you want to challenge the use of a domain name, you will first need to decide on a strategy for going after the registrant. You currently have three choices:
Use the dispute resolution procedure offered by ICANN. ICANN, the international nonprofit organization now in charge of domain name registrations worldwide, recently implemented a process called the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy . This administrative procedure works only for cybersquatting disputes — that is, when someone has registered your name in a bad-faith attempt to profit from your trademark. Compared with filing a lawsuit, ICANN’s dispute resolution procedure is potentially less expensive and quicker .
File a cybersquatting lawsuit. If you take a cybersquatter to court and win, you may get not only the domain name you want, you could also win money damages from the cybersquatter.
How to Find a Domain Name Registrant
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How Do We Check Whether The Domain Name We’ve Chosen Is Available
Lots of different companies can register domain names for you. Their search tools will usually let you check many domain extensions at once. Good places to start include:
Even if you are only planning to register one domain name, such as ourcompany.co.uk, it’s wise to check variations of this name such as those ending in .com, .ltd.uk, .plc.uk and so on.
If similar domains have been registered, make sure there is unlikely to be any conflict between you and the organisation that has registered them .
What Should We Do If Another Business Claims They Have The Right To One Of Our Domain Names
You need to assess the merits of their claim. You also need to think about the costs and likely outcome of any dispute resolution procedure or court case.
Faced with the threat of legal action by a large, well-funded company, smaller businesses often decide that their best course is simply to concede a disputed domain name and to negotiate appropriate settlement terms.
On the other hand, if you have invested significantly in building your internet presence, this may not be a satisfactory outcome – and you may have a strong case for defending a claim.
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Research And Measure Domain Value
Image by 1shots / freedigitalphotos.net
You need to be very careful when you buy a pre-owned domain name. Its just like when you want to buy a used car you get it checked, find out if it has ever been involved in an accident etc. Its the same with pre-owned domain which is why its important to look at the history.
Your perfect domain mightve been penalised by Google, flagged for spam, malware, hacking or other illegal activities. When you get that web address, it comes with all the baggage which means youll get everything it stands for good and bad.
Theres actually a great video from Googles Matt Cutts with things to look at when researching a domain to buy. Here are his top tips:
- Search for the domain name without the .com and see what people wrote about it. Has it been criticised for being spammy or doing anything illegal? Does it have a good or a bad reputation?
- Ask the owner to see Google Webmaster Tools and look for messages and stats there.
- Ask the owner to see to get some insights on traffic and more.
Here is the video:
If you want to go back in time and get a historical record of how the site looked in the past, go to archive.org and type in the web address in the WayBackMachine search box.
Next you will be able to browse through snapshots of the site dating between its registration up to just a few days ago.
Heres how IMDb.com looked in 2001:
Contacting The Owner Of The Domain Name
Buying a domain name from someone is different than using a registration service.
This is an important step, you need to ask yourself a few questions before considering to approach the person with the domain name you want to purchase, these questions include:
How important is the specific domain name to your new venture?
The importance of the domain name should be the very first question in your mind.
If the domain name is for a service or product that you are to launch, then a name of the product as a domain name may be very important. This is because it will be the primary and most intuitive domain name for the venture.
For example, if you are planning to launch a new product called tasty it may be important to buy a domain name matching this name.
That is tasty.com, this will help increase the traffic to your site as people will find it in the fits position in Google and other search engines.
How much money are you willing to spend on this domain name
Before you purchase a domain name from the owner, you should consider the pricing as its important. You dont want to spend thousands of dollars on nothing. In fact, that depends mainly on the budget of the entrepreneur or business.
For some, purchasing a $1000 domain name will lead to a great hit on its marketing budget. For a larger company, a $10000 domain name may be a bargain.
How much does it cost to buy a domain name?
How much a registered domain name cost ?
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How To Bulk Buy Domains
If youre lucky enough to be in a position to buy a bunch of domain names all at once, its actually very easy to do. In fact, right here at Namecheap, we have a bulk domain name search tool where you can search and purchase them all in one place.
This tool means that users can search up to 5,000 keywords and bulk buy domains if they wish. This is particularly useful for businesses looking to secure a bunch of domain names to point towards their main site, or if youre a start-up that doesnt want to lose the chance at some great domain extensions that are relevant to your industry.
Bulk buying domains means that its easier to protect your brand from competitors that may buy similar domains to you, in order to capture your potential customers. If they manage to get your domain, they may even sell it back to you at a high price at a later date.
Imagine you own a product that youd eventually like to market globally. Another advantage of bulk-buying is to secure country-code TLDs for the areas youd like to sell in, making online marketing easier for you in the future.
What Should We Do If Someone Is Using A Similar Domain Name To Profit From Our Brand Or Take Advantage Of Our Customers
If they are using your trademark or deliberately passing themselves off as being related to your business, you have a strong basis for using a dispute resolution procedure or taking court action against them.
If they can claim they are using the domain legitimately, it may be more difficult to take action. Rather than spending time and money on a dispute, you might be better off focusing on promoting your own domain name. An experienced advisor can help you decide whether you have a strong case and what the most appropriate course of action is.
While you are not responsible for this, you may want to warn your customers if you become aware this is occurring. You may also want to establish an appropriate security policy and tell your customers about it: for example, stating that you will not ask for financial or security details by email.
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Can I Buy A Domain Name Without Hosting
Yes, you can. Domain registration and web hosting are two different services. You dont need to buy or have a hosting plan to register a domain name.Check if your preferred domain name is available, then buy and register it at a domain name registrar.Whether you have a website or not, the domain name will be yours as long as you renew the registration before it expires.
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Ready To Buy A Domain
As with anything else in business, getting started is often the hardest part. But now that you know how, I encourage you to jump into buying the domain you always wanted. Even a no from the current owner doesnt mean you have to give up situations change, so its always a good idea to check back in from time to time to let your dream domains owner know youre still interested.
Want an expert to handle it for you? If all this domain aftermarket stuff sounds too complex or if you just dont have the time to deal with it, consider turning to a professional service like GoDaddys Domain Broker Service. A broker will contact the domains current owner and negotiate for the domain on your behalf. Done and done.
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Domain Names Allow Us To Distinguish Sites
The number of worldwide websites exceeds one billion, and that number is growing by the second. Domain names allow humans to distinguish one site from another instead of having to use the long unique string of numbers known as an internet protocol address. Domain names are made up of the domain extension , the second-level domain , and a host name . Together, these details make up a uniform resource locator .
If All Else Fails Try Registering A Different Extension Or Top
If you really need to use a specific domain because it matches your business or personal name, but you cant get the owner of the .com version to agree to sell it to you, consider a different top-level domain. For example, rather than fruitcobbler.com consider registering fruitcobbler.recipes or fruitcobbler.cooking. If you need help, you can read also how to register a domain or how much is a domain name.
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