Check For Domain Availability
When users enter a URL in their browser, the browser sends a request to a global network of servers that are able to locate your website using something called the domain name system .
The DNS is a universally recognized, decentralized system for naming websites. This is what allows computers, phones, and any other device that can access the internet to find the webpage a user is looking for.
Checking domain availability only takes a couple of seconds, and nearly every registrar and hosting service has a free domain name search tool that allows you to do this . Here are a few tools for quickly checking the availability of a domain:
Remember that domain names are universal, so if a domain name is unavailable from one provider, its unavailable from all of them. Whats great about these tools is that theyll often suggest similar domains that are available if yours isnt.
If your domain name is unavailable, you might get a message back about brokering the domain. This means that the domain name is taken, but the registrar offers a service wherein they will negotiate with the domain owner on your behalf to try and get them to sell their domain name.
Although snagging your first-choice domain name might sound enticing, its important to understand the risks associated with attempting to broker a domain name.
Find A Domain Name Registrar
The non-profit Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers oversees the entire system of domain names, and it allows outside companies, called domain registrars, to sell and manage domain names. You will need to register your domain name through a registrar.
Some of the most popular domain registrars include GoDaddy, Bluehost, and Domain.com, although there are many more to choose from. Be sure to carefully consider pricing and policies for each one before choosing your domain registrar, as it will be managing your domain name.
How To Find Out If A Domain Name Is Available
With millions of active websites on the internet, a lot of domain names have already been claimed. Before we move on to discover how to purchase a domain, we need to know how to find out if a domain name is available.
Domain lookup tools are provided by the majority of registrars, and will allow you to check if a certain domain name is available to purchase or if it has already been registered. If you want to see if a domain is available for use, check out our domain lookup resource from Nexcess. Itâs completely free, convenient, and user-friendly domain lookup tool.
If a domain name is unavailable, some tools can also provide information on the current domain registrar, registration, registry expiration dates, and more.
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Apply To The Us Patent And Trademark Office
Finally, once you have registered your domain name, apply to the USPTO for trademark protection. You do not need to do this to create trademark rights based on your domain name, but doing so strengthens any future disputes that may arise. More importantly, it prevents someone else from registering your domain name or something similar as their trademark, which could eliminate a major headache down the road.
Connect Your Domain To A Cms
This is an optional step but can help you manage your website with ease. A CMS, or content management system, gives you full mastery over your content. It’s easier now more than ever to connect your CMS to your domain name with HubSpot’s Custom Domain Connection.
With this tool, you can connect a custom domain, establish your brand, and create a beautiful user-friendly website in minutes.
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Find A Custom Domain For Your Site
Whether youre working on a blog, an online portfolio, or an online shop, Mailchimp offers custom domains that can make all the difference to your online presence. And theres no reason to stop there. Use Mailchimp to build your website and connect it to our all-in-one marketing platform to really make your offerings stand out from the rest.
Learn more about how to get a free domain name from Mailchimp and how our offer compares to the competition.
Use Your Domain For A Custom Email Address
Youre a professional, so why are you still using that personal Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo, MSN email address you created 10 or even 20 years ago?
If the email youre using to communicate with customers isnt branding your business, then its time you kick that free email to the curb and set up a custom email using the domain you just purchased.
If you register a domain, you can set up a personalized email address such as YourName@yourdomain.com. Thats so much better than YourFirstandLastName_1975@gmail.com, right?
You can put that custom email address on your business cards, the side of your car, everywhere you promote your business.
With Professional Business Email from GoDaddy, not only will you get 24/7 customer support, but youll also get as many email aliases as youd like .
Youll look more professional, credible, and with so many email address options, you can guarantee that emails are going to the right people.
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How To Search For Domain Names
Choosing a domain name is not easy. You may want to learn how to search for domain names to see whatâs currently available and to generate ideas to help you come up with a unique website identifier. You can see the full list of the available top-level domains on the official ICANN website. Or, use other resources to learn more about website extensions and understand which one would be the best for you. While its recommended you choose your website name based on your brand image and the type of content you will host, various domain name generators online can help you get some ideas.
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How Do I Permanently Buy A Domain Name
Its not possible to permanently own a domain name since its not a one-time purchase the maximum period of registration is ten years. You will need to pay and renew your subscription if you want to keep using the same domain name.This is to cover the maintenance costs or domain tax collected by the ICANN.As the number of registered domains grows, the tax increases. Hence, registrars need to adjust their pricing accordingly, which is why the renewal fees are more costly than the registration prices.
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Make It Brandable Not Generic
Creative, memorable domain names are always better than generic ones. After all, your domain name is how people will find, remember, and spread the word about your business on the internet. Its much better to have something that aligns with your brand instead of a domain name thats made up of a bunch of general keywords.
For example, can you tell the difference between cheapcarinsurance.com and affordableautoinsurance.com? Which one would you trust when it comes to buying insurance? Probably neither. Both sound a little spammy, and theyre terribly generic.
On the other hand, youll probably know where the domain names progressive.com or geico.com are going to point you to. Those companies have invested in their brands, and theyve used them in their domain names. You can trust that these sites are legitimate.
Even if you havent built up trust and loyalty yet, you can start by choosing a strong domain name that fits your brand.
Use A Domain Name Generator
If youre not the creative type, you can use a domain name generator to help spark some ideas. Simply enter in some words or phrases that describe your brand or website, and these tools will give you a list of ideas that you can then check for availability.
Bring your brand to life with your own website. Design from scratch, connect a domain, analyze traffic, and optimize for SEO.
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What Is Web Hosting
When you are finally ready to start your own website, the first step is to find the right Web Host to host your website.
Web Host is basically a company with many computers or servers that connect to the internet. When you sign up for a web hosting account with such a company, they allocate space on one of their servers to you for storing and managing all the files related to your website.
Choosing the right Web Host can depend on various factors like:
- Your allocated budget,
- Amount of space you need to host your website files,
- Reliability and speed of access,
- Technical support, etc.
You can check out the list of web hosting companies that I currently recommend on my website tools page.
Once you have chosen a Web Host, you can then point your domain name to your web hosts server so that your website gets displayed when someone visits your domain name.
Lets see how this works
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How To Choose A Domain Name
Since your domain name can have a major impact on your online presence, what you choose is a vital first step in building your brand. Finding the perfect domain name, however, can be challenging.
While its true that there are millions of domain names available, many of the popular domain names that are easy to remember are taken. Fortunately, you can still get what you need if you go through a simple process and use a bit of imagination.
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Protect Your Personal Information From Becoming Public Knowledge
When you register a domain name, your owner information is added to the public registry. This means anyone will be able to see your name, address, phone number, and email address. This can be a problem for your privacy at best youll be targeted with spam, and at worse you could be a victim of identity theft.
To hide this information, youll need some form of domain ID protection. These add-ons essentially mask your information to the outside world and use placeholders instead. While mail is still forwarded to your inbox, theres a protective layer between you and the sender.
If you use Namecheap, youll get free access to WhoisGuard included with your purchase. WhoisGuard will mask your personal information to ensure its not publicly available.
Do I Need To Register A Domain Name For My Subdomain
I want to know if I need to register a separate domain name for my subdomain . Do I need to register another domain name to feed my subdomain?
- AStopherJul 24, 2016 at 18:41
- @cybermonkey. Does that mean I will have to register a separate domain for every subdomain I create. Meaning that for me to have example.mydomain.com, I must have registered two domain names ? JoshJul 24, 2016 at 18:44
- I’m voting to close this question as off-topic because it isn’t a programming problem. It might be more suited to webmasters.stackexchange.com/help/on-topic
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Can Anyone Register A Domain
Anyone can register a domain.
However, if you are registering a domain name for a known personality or brand, the registrar may need you to show proof of identity or authorization to register a name on behalf of someone or a business entity.
This may be required to prevent identity theft or misuse of brands and trademarks.
Make Sure Your Chosen Domain Is Available
Once youve chosen your domain name, make sure its available. It can be disheartening to find the perfect name, only to find out when you go to purchase it that its not available. You can use any online domain registrar to check the availability of a domain.
If your domain isnt available, consider looking at different suffixes. Most people automatically look for websites that end in .com. But thats not the only option, and given the massive number of websites available today, more are becoming popular and common. Suffixes you can look for other than .com include:
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Purchase And Register Your Domain Name
Although its possible to register your domain name for free and meet the requirements of the global ICANN registry, not everyone is comfortable with their private information being available on the public ICANN registry. A domain name registrar will typically offer the option to provide the necessary information to ICANN while also protecting your privacy. For this reason, many people choose to use a private domain name registrar to purchase and register their domain name. This privacy protection may come with an additional fee.
Once you have chosen an available domain name, you can purchase the name for a nominal fee, typically around $10 to $15 per year. This fee is typically paid on an annual basis, but some registrars offer multi-year terms. When registering the name, youll want to pay close attention to the duration of the registration.
Rather than choosing a long-term registration, you may want to consider a shorter duration with automatic renewal. This way you still have the option to transfer your domain name to another company if youre dissatisfied with the service, but you arent vulnerable to the domain name being scooped up by another party in the event it expires before youve had a chance to renew the registration.
You may also be able to bid on a domain name that is already owned, but a word of warning: the costs can be quite high, depending on the popularity of the domain name.
How To Register A Domain
Buying a domain might seem like the final step in the domain registration process, but it is just the beginning of your journey as a website owner. To register a domain, you need to provide domain registration information, verify your new domain ownership, and configure DNS. Below we will review how to register a domain name in three steps.
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Questions Related To Contractual Compliance Approach And Process
What is ICANNs Contractual Compliance Approach and Process?
ICANN approach and process can be found at this link: . ICANN, in collaboration with the different ICANN stakeholders, implemented the Informal and Formal Resolution processes. The processes ensure consistency for all parties involved, including ICANNs global staff, contracted parties and complainants.
ICANN undertakes various activities to ensure compliance with contractual obligations some of the activities are a result of complaints, some are monitoring and others are audit-related.
The complaints are received by ICANN upon submission by complainants using the web forms posted at this link: or via an email to .
The monitoring activities are ICANN-initiated, based in part on industry articles, social media postings, previous complaints, and trend analysis in an effort to proactively address any alleged failure to comply with contract terms.
Please refer to this link to learn more about ICANN Contractual Compliance Audit program and activities.
Add The Domain To Your Cart And Complete The Registration Process
If your chosen domain is available, congrats! All you have to do now is add it to your cart and complete the registration process. If you dont yet have an account with the registrar, youll be prompted to sign up.
Be sure to follow the steps we outlined in the How to Register Your Domain Name section to ensure youve successfully registered your domain name.
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A Guide To Domain Names For Small Businesses
As a small business owner, a website is no longer just an option its a virtual necessity. More people than ever are looking for businesses in online directories and making purchases using the internet. In fact, shoppers have spent $52 billion more online since the beginning of 2020 as compared to the same timeframe the previous year. While online shopping has been trending upward for years, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a dramatic increase in internet purchases.
While you may be ready to build a website and establish an online presence for your business, you might not know where to begin. After helping over 3 million small businesses get up and running online, we’re here to offer some friendly guidance. Your online journey begins with a domain name. Lets take a closer look at what a domain name is, how you use it, and why it is an important element of your business and brand.
Add Or Remove Domain Privacy
Bluehost charges extra for domain privacy. This service costs $11.88 per year. Please note that the service is automatically added to your cart when you want to purchase a domain name from Bluehost. You can opt out of domain privacy by unticking the corresponding box.
However, consider retaining the domain privacy option even if you dont mind people accessing your personal information. For one, this protection helps to control spam and junk mail. Some aggressive marketers use the WHOIS database to target potential clients.
Its like a free contact list for unscrupulous salespeople. Scammers are also known to use the WHOIS database to find potential victims. You can avoid unsolicited calls and potential scams by keeping your information private.
Domain privacy is also effective for keeping your competitors at bay. A rival business may use your private information for market research and other competitive practices. Regardless, domain privacy is affordable and worth the added security and peace of mind.
You can also add domain privacy at a later date if you arent yet sure. Bluehost offers it as an add-on service. You can find it on the Bluehost Marketplace starting at $1.25 per month.
Finally, its worth noting that not all TLDs are eligible for privacy protection. Most notably, country code TLDs like .ca, .uk, and so on arent eligible. This is because different registries have different rules.
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