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 .
Run A Domain Name Search
Now that you have found a registrar through which to register your domain, the next step is to perform a domain name search.
When choosing a domain name, make sure to pick the right domain extension as well its the suffix at the end of a web address. Domain name extensions are also referred to as top-level domains .
There are different types of domain extensions available, such as:
- Country Code Top-Level Domain . This kind of TLD represents a specific country, letting both users and search engines know that a site is designed for visitors from a particular region. An example of this is the .us domain, which is the ccTLD for the United States.
- Sponsored Top-Level Domain . Its a type of TLD restricted to certain types of groups and organizations. Some of sTLD examples include .mil, .gov, and .edu.
- Generic Top-Level Domain . Its the most common type of TLD it doesnt rely on a country code and can be used for general purposes. A few examples of gTLDs include .com, .org, and .net.
When deciding on the extension that is suitable for your domain, look for a TLD that represents the purpose of your website. Choosing the wrong suffix can confuse visitors and make your brand name prone to being misinterpreted.
For example, a .com or .biz extensionmight be best for an eCommerce business. On the other hand, if you plan to create a blog to keep an online journal, an extension like .me can be an excellent solution.
Decide How Much You Want To Pay
If your domain is looking like its available to be negotiated, and you know the contact details of the domain owner, its time to decide how much youre willing to pay for it.
Theres no set amount you should or shouldnt pay for a domain, so its really up to you what you want to do. However, you can look at similar prices of domains on a domain marketplace like Flippa, which is very reliable.
- Age: Older domains are often considered more valuable
- Length: A shorter domain will be more valuable than a longer domain as they are easier to remember
- Keywords: Domains with popular keywords will cost more because they will rank higher on search engines like Google
- Generic Value: A generic domain name that could work for multiple businesses and industries is likely to be more expensive
- Branding: Short and memorable names are easier to type and often are easier to build a brand around
Before you approach the domain owner of the domain you want to buy, think about the minimum and maximum amount you are willing to pay for the domain. Creating limits for yourself will be easier for you to accept and make negotiation easier if you are clear on what you want to achieve. Use a tool like Flippa to look at similar domain names, domain lengths, and keywords.
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What To Do If The Domain Is Available And Not Taken
This would be your dream come true. It means your dream domain name is not taken after all. Go ahead and register it as quickly as you can.
But how do you know the domain name isnt taken?
Go to Scalahosting and type in the domain name you want to verify into the search box.
On the page that follows, under Actions, click Register a New Domain.
Now, enter your domain in the search box. Your search results will show if your domain is taken or not.
If the domain is not taken, youll see the message, Congrats, Your Domain Is Available!
However, if you go through this process with a different domain name, say techcontentlabs.com, and that domain name is taken, the message will be different.
You will see the message Sorry, techcontentlabs.com is unavailable, as you can see in the image below.
If the domain name you want is taken, then youll want to find out if its expired but not available yet, or the owner isnt using the domain name.
How To Buy A Domain That Is Owned
Isnt it frustrating when you come up with the perfect name for your business and then, after you run a search, find out that the domain name it already taken? And whats worse, the owner doesnt seem to be using it?
While you cant make someone give up a domain they own, there are things you can do so dont abandon hope just yet. Follow the steps below and you might just get the domain youve always wanted.
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What Are Internet Domain Names And How Do They Work
A domain name forms your website address and part of your email address, like ourcompany.co.uk. Your domain name enables other people to find your website or send emails to you.
Each domain name has two parts. The first part can be any combination of letters and numbers, between three and 63 characters long. You can also include hyphens, as long as they aren’t at the start or end of the domain.
Domain names are not case sensitive, so upper and lower-case letters are treated the same. Some domain names can contain non-Latin characters, such as Chinese or Arabic.
Most businesses try to choose a domain name that relates to them, such as the name of their company or product .
The second part of the name is the domain name extension. This can indicate in which country the name is registered or what kind of organisation is using it.
There are many domain name extensions to choose from, reflecting different locations, industries and concepts:
- There are geographic domain extensions for different countries, like .uk. These may be divided into sub-categories. For example, .co.uk is intended for use by commercial organisations in the UK, while .org.uk is intended for non-profit organisations. You can also have the shorter, simpler .uk.
- There are many international or ‘generic’ domain extensions for different types of organisation. For example, .com is the most common generic extension. In recent years, many new domain extensions have become available.
Buying A Domain Name Target The Right Contact Person
Equally critical, is the point-of-contact. Establishing the Whois, is just the start of the connection. Some domain owners are very large, corporate power-houses that own hundred, or perhaps, thousands of domain names. They are your communication or, bridge towards a potential deal.
Amazon.com is a perfect example. Lets dig a bit deeper in a simple case study. Amazon owns more than 41,152 domain names in their portfolio. Many of their domains go unused, and do not resolve. How do you find the correct person within Amazons 647,500 employees?
Is it the project manager around that brand? Would it be marketing, CMO, Legal, Business Development, Webmaster, Technology etc?
Its a vital step to connect with the correct person, or division within the Company so you dont spend time spinning your wheels.
After contact is established, you need to determine whether the asset is indeed availableis it within budget and Scope? Whats it worth to you?
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Consult A Web Design Expert
Believe it or not, this kind of situation comes up every day. If you currently work with a web design expert, rely on them to help you navigate this new terrain of scope. Your web designer has likely encountered this situation before and can come up with some creative ideas to find the domain name that works for your branding.
Purchase Your Domain Name And Complete Its Registration
Once you settle on a domain name, its time to purchase it. When you buy through Mailchimp, well let you know the annual cost of the domain name as well as any available discounts.
During the checkout process, youll be required to enter your contact information, including an email address, to register the domain.
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Find Out How To Contact The Owner Through Whois
If the domain isnt listed for sale on Namecheap.com and theres no link to contact the owner through the site, its time to turn to a domain search to find out who owns the domain.
WHOIS is a directory that tells you who owns a domain name. You can search for a domain on WHOIS and get the owners address, phone number and email address.
From there, the easiest way to contact a domain owner is through email. Just send them a friendly email asking if they are willing to sell their domain name and if so, for how much.>
Some domain name owners wont respond to emails about buying a domain because they get a lot of inquiries. Try calling the domain owner if you dont hear back a few days after sending the email. If all else fails, do it the old-fashioned way: write a letter and send it via snail mail. Youd be surprised how often this works!
How To Buy A Domain Name That Is Already Taken
Choosing the perfect domain name is always a challenge. However, there are more hurdles to overcome if the one you want is not available. If youre unfortunate enough, youll land on the perfect name, only to find out that its already taken.
If you want to buy a domain thats already taken, youll need to do some extra legwork. In this article, well walk you through all the ways that you can buy a domain that already has an owner.
Lets get to it!
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What Do We Need To Do To Maintain Our Domain Name
As part of the registration process, you provide administrative details such as a contact name and address, and technical information such as the web hosting service to which you want to point your domain name,
Make sure you keep this information up to date. You will also need to renew your registration periodically. A .uk domain name registration is valid for up to ten years, and the current holder is always given the first option to renew.
Most domain name companies will send renewal notices by email. Many allow you to set up an auto-renewal system, so the domain gets renewed automatically. It’s a good idea to use this facility, as even big brands like Microsoft occasionally forget to renew their domains.
Once a domain name expires, you have a grace period period during which you can renew. Once that has passed, the domain will be released onto the open market.
If you receive a renewal notice, check it carefully. Some unscrupulous businesses send letters prompting you to authorise renewal . This allows them to take control of your domain name until you pay them a substantial fee.
S To Your Dream Domain
Now that you are ready to take the plunge and go for that perfect domain for your project, lets look at a few final steps which will give you the best chance at walking away with that name. There are really only a few steps involved in buying a domain:
Find out who owns your dream domain.
Get contact info for the decision maker.
Pay for and transfer ownership of the domain.
Of course, you can apply variations and tactics to each step, but I am confident someone with little domain buying experience can make a decent go of getting the exact name they want if they follow the steps below.
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How To Purchase A Domain That Is Already Taken
Jeffrey is the Co-Founder of Saw.com, focusing on domain sales and acquisitions. Visit www.Saw.com if you want to purchase a domain.
Youre starting a business or undergoing a rebrand, and youve come up with the perfect domain name. The only problem is that the domain is already registered. In this case, you have one of two options: You can either choose an alternative domain name, or you can fork over the cash to the current owner. If your heart is set on your first choice, this article will explain how you can go about acquiring that domain.
Beware of buying the same domain with a different top-level domain.
One unfortunate occurrence I see all too often is when buyers decide to go with a different top-level domain of their first-choice domain. At first glance, this strategy makes sense. After all, its the same name, and its much cheaper! Registrars like GoDaddy.com and Domain.com will often suggest this option when you search for a .com domain that is already taken.
It is a fact that internet users typically enter .com at the end of the domain name when they type into the URL bar. This means if you decide to go with a .net or a .biz, users who end up at the .com could have a much harder time finding you. All in all, I believe its a better decision to pay up for your first-choice domain, and if that doesnt fit your budget, go with a different name altogether.
Visit the domain to see how its being used.
Find the owner of the domain.
How To Find Out If A Web Address Is Available To Register
A quick way to find out if a web address is available is to use a WHOIS service, such as the one provided for free by Afilias. If your preferred name is available and will not be in breach of any law, the next step is to register it for your business. If you engage a third party, such as a website developer to register your domain name on your behalf, be sure the domain name is registered in your name or business entity. This can avoid potential issues down the track.
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Find A Credible Domain Registrar
A domain registrar is a company that is responsible for registering and managing domain names. Its accredited by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers , a non-profit organization that controls the rules and regulations of domain name registration.
Choosing a reliable domain registrar is crucial because it can impact a project or business for years. Pick the wrong one and you might end up paying hidden fees or even get scammed. For example, there have been cases where a domain registrar pressures users into purchasing domain names similar to the ones they hold under false pretenses.
It can be challenging to pick from hundreds of domain registrars out there as they all offer similar services. Therefore, consider the following when choosing a registrar:
As we mentioned earlier, people can also purchase a custom domain from a hosting company that offers domain registration services, like Hostinger.
Since having a web hosting plan and domain name is essential to make a website, it may be more convenient to purchase and maintain them together at the same place.
Here at Hostinger, we offer low upfront and renewal costs for the most popular domain names and a dedicated 24/7 support team ready to assist you.
If you buy a domain name at Hostinger, its also possible to activate domain privacy protection. This feature can help hide specific details from being discovered through a WHOIS lookup.