Is My Domain Name Available
Your domain name is your online calling card. Its the public identity of your brand and the way customers can find your website, so it needs to be just rightcatchy, easy to remember, and indicative of your sites purpose. But even if you create the perfect name for your site, that name may already be taken by one or more of the billions of websites around the world. Thats why checking the availability of your desired domain name should be the first step in setting up your self-hosted business or personal website. If you are wondering Is my domain name available? this blog post is for you.
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And owning the right domain name can pay off big time. Business.com was sold for $345 million back in 2007. The company who bought it ended up going bankrupt, which just goes to show that a good domain name might not be worth as much as some people think.
Some smaller investors also use to make a few hundred dollars per sale.
Flippa domain name marketplace
While there are thousands of domain names for sale at any given time, only a handful of domain names end up selling for more than a few bucks. Dont think of this as an easy way to get rich.
How Do I Choose The Best Domain Name
Great question! Here’s a few core things to consider when choosing your new domain name:
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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
Reasons Domain Names Might Expire
It is all too easy to overlook the fact that a domain name registration is a temporary thing. Even though at the time, the domain name is yours, and could be for years, there is still a chance for that domain to pass out of your control. There are a variety of ways this might occur:
- Renewal reminder notices: If you have switched off renewal reminder notices, you could be setting yourself up for disaster. While auto emails and notifications can clutter your inbox, they can also be lifesaving. Even if you manually switched off renewal reminders , Domain.com will begin sending reminders by email to your listed email address approximately 30 days from the domain expiration date. We guarantee you will receive at least two reminders before the expiration date and one within five days after expiration. So, pay attention to your inbox, or alter your settings to flag the words, expiration, or renewal, to ensure you dont miss these important reminders.
- Auto-renew is not enabled: By going by your account information and switching your domain name to auto-renew, you save yourself from possibly forgetting. When auto-renew is in use, it will automatically renew your domain name prior to the expiration date, generally a day before expiration. This feature will continue to run and auto-renew unless changes are made or if there are issues with your billing information.
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What Is Domain Privacy And Do I Need It
Domain privacy and security is as important to us as it is to you. Without domain privacy, your private and sensitive information may be collected and displayed in ICANN’s WHOIS database when you register your domain. Domain privacy ensures that these details are hidden from the public view. Our Domain Privacy + Protection package will make ICANN display our contact information in lieu of yours.
Keep Your Domain Name And Website Up And Running
Domain names play a crucial on the virtual marketplace. Choosing a creative domain name is a time-consuming and important aspect of giving your business the tools to thrive. Such an investment is essential for success, which is why a domain name expiration can be a demoralizing and business-crippling issue, that is only made worse if a competitor manages to snatch up your domain name. All the time and effort spent on building that brand and linking it to the domain name might be all for naught.
The best way to prevent this issue is to do everything in your power to prevent such a disaster from occurring in the first place. This includes regularly checking your email and spam folders for renewal notices, setting personal alerts of expiration, always ensuring that your domains billing info is up to date, and setting your account to auto-renew. If you take the right steps, you can save yourself a serious headache, so, do not be anything less than proactive when it comes to one of your domain names possibly expiring. With the right infrastructure in place, this should never be an issue!
Domain.com has the tools you need to continue building your business into a success.
Content Marketing Strategist working in the digital marketing industry. Skilled in SEO-focused content creation, keyword research and competitive analysis, interactive content, web content optimization, and landing page creation.
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Why You Need A Domain Name
You dont really need your own domain name to simply create an online presence. A variety of free services provide space for users to set up a blog or basic webpage and give it a name, but that name becomes a subdomain of the main site and isnt a domain name you own. This means it appears online as something like _yoursite.hostname.com_ or _hostname.com/yoursite_. If the host site closes down, your sites identity disappears with itand it cant be used in that form to create a self-hosted site elsewhere.
To set up a fully functional website with its own permanent identity, you need to own a unique domain name that remains yours under all circumstances, regardless of the hosting service you choose. Buying a domain name and registering it reserves the name for your own exclusive use as long as the domain registration fees are paid for periods ranging from one to several years. To keep rights to the name, youll need to continue renewing it. If a domain registration expires and isnt renewed, the name can become available to others.
How To Park A Domain
The simplest way to park a domain is to just register it using a domain registrar like .
When youre parking a domain, you dont need to worry about setting up nameservers to connect it to a web hosting provider.
All you need to do is find a free domain and register it. Domain parking is that simple.
Google Domains domain search
But it isnt free. You have to buy the domain. You cant just search for one and earmark it for later use.
To keep it parked, you need to keep paying for it every year. For most TLDs, this costs around $10 including WHOIS protection.
So make sure that you give it some thought before you do your first domain parking.
Are you sure this is the correct domain name that youre going to use?
You should be able to confidently answer yes to that question before you start registering domain names. If not, you can find yourself registering new domains every time you come up with a better option.
Read our tips on how to choose a domain name that stands out so that you dont waste your money.
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Take The Opportunity To Brainstorm A New Brand Name
You might be thinking this tip is a cop-out.
But theres a lot of value to this idea.
Let me explain.
Imagine two entrepreneurs have just created a search engine. The working name? BackRub.
But that could be easily confused with massage services. People dont normally associate search engines with the term back rub.
So these entrepreneurs choose another name, a better one: Google.
Thats rightthe worlds most popular search engine started its life as BackRub.
So if your perfect domain name is taken, it could be an opportunity in disguise.
Youll have to hit the drawing board again, but you can come up with a different, unique name that will stand on its own.
Understanding Websites And Copyright
Its not enough to register a domain name with trademark protection you then need to build a website. As the owner of your website, a communication channel, you are legally liable for the content you publish on the website.
This includes both the claims you make and the literal content you use such as photos, videos, and other assets.
Republishing copyrighted content
One of the most common legal issues with websites is the unintentional or intentional use of copyrighted images and content.
For instance, if you want to add a nice image to your website to engage your visitors, you cannot simply copy an image you found via Google Image Search. Many of these images are protected, and the copyright holders can demand compensation for the material used without permission or proper attribution.
From images and videos to text-based content, you need to do your due diligence before you repost any content on your website.
Many artists have their licenses on their website which can detail how other websites can legally republish their work. CreativeCommons.org provides detailed information about licensing agreements with digital creatives to help you avoid facing legal fines from publishing someone elses work.
Protecting your own content
As an entrepreneur, your website is one of the most valuable assets you have. Its a way for you to attract new clients, engage your current leads, retain business, and provide customer service.
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Search For The Domain Name Youre Interested In
Now, simply type in the domain name you want to find out more information about into the search bar and press enter. Whenever a domain owner decides to register the domain, theyre required to include information such as their name, address, email, and phone number. A Whois lookup can also tell you which registrar the domain is at, when it was registered, when it could potentially expire, and more.
Use Domain Name Generators When Stuck
At this point, you should have at least a general idea of some possible words to put in your domain. Some of those words may already be taken, trademarked, or just dont have the sound youre looking for.
Thats where domain name generators come into play. These generators can turn your ideas into fresh, available domains.
Here are some of our favorite domain name generators to try out:
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Increase Professionalism With A Domain
An often-overlooked benefit to registering a business domain is the ability to create and use domain-specific email addresses. Many small business owners still use free email services like Gmail or Yahoo to communicate with their customers.
Consumers are becoming more tech-savvy, and they expect the businesses they use to have a certain level of professionalism. In a highly competitive market, small differences like having a business email can be the factor that tips the scale in your favor.
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Free Products + Services When You Register
From free perks like URL and email forwarding to sophisticated account features like Two-Step Verification and DNS templates, Name.com offers more for less.
Fair, transparent pricing
We clearly display domain discounts and renewal pricing during the search process so there are no nasty surprises when your domains renewal comes up.
Everything in one place
Once you have a domain in hand, we make it simple to attach email, hosting, website builders, and more. Its everything you need in one convenient place.
Easy domain transfers
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Use The Right Domain Name Extensions
When you choose your domain name extension, you can be sure of one thing: .com is still the best.
According to research from Domain Name Stat, 43% of all domains have the .com extension.
Why? Well, .com is the most familiar and easiest to remember.
While there are many successful websites with a .net and .org, your website will probably do better if it has a .com extension. Its the safest bet.
Our advice: Go with .com. If thats taken, try .net or .org. If these are taken too, youd be better off brainstorming a new domain name. And oh! Avoid those weird extensions like .club, .space, .pizza and so on.