Understanding Domain Name, Choosing and Registering One

When it comes to building web platforms, domain name is one of the tools in the world wide web that you will have to deal with.

Understanding what it is and how it works, will go a long way to helping you make better decisions, especially if you are planning to start a blog or build a web platform for yourself or business.

In this post, we will look at what Domain name is, how it works, what to consider when choosing a domain name and how to register one.

Continue reading to learn more about Domain name.

Domain name

What is a domain name?

Simply put, a domain name is a name that represents a web platform (website, blog, social media, etc.) on the internet. For instance, the domain name of this blog is digitaltopnotch.com, with this name and with some set of tools you can locate this blog from anywhere in the world.

Domain names are unique just like personal phone numbers, every specific domain name is meant to represent one web platforms on the web, two web platform can not have the same domain name.

A domain name also makes it easier for people to access web content.

How Domain Name works?

To understand how domain name works take house address in the real world as an example, a domain name is like a house address in the real world, with an address of a particular house in the real world, you can locate a house wherever it’s and through whatever means, road, air or water ways.

Let’s say your friend just moved to a new house and wants you to come visiting, for you to get to this new house, you need an address. Regardless of the location of the new house, with an address and probably with some tools like map you can find your friend’s new house, go inside the new house and get a view of the inside of the House.

This is how domain name works on the online world, Domain name helps you find web platform among millions of other web platform on the online world, with a domain name and with tools like phone, Internet and browser, you can locate web platform on the online world, access the web platform and be able to see the designs, content and other activities that goes on in a web platform.

This is made possible by a Web server and a server name.

A web server is responsible for making web content available online, it’s in web server that all the content we have access online are stored, web server are identifiable online with the help of an IP address, a series of number like 198.234.876.2, this series of numbers enables access to web contents from web servers online.

The science in access to information online is that accessing information online with IP address might be difficult for web user, but with a name it’s much easier and fun, this is where server name comes in play.

When a web content is hosted in a server by a hosting company, the hosting company provides a name server which helps domain name to retrieve information from the server whenever a user queries the Domain name through a browser.

The name serve work as an intermediary between domain name and the server where web content is store for online access

Domain name extension

The domain name of this blog is digitaltopnotch.com, the .com attached to it is what is called extension.

Domain names also come with some extensions, which actually indicate the categories the blog or website belong to.

Here are some of the most common extension:

.com — for commercial purposes

.org — for organizations

.edu — for educational bodies

.net — for networking

.gov — for government bodies, etc.

other extensions includes

.biz — for business
.museum —  for museum
.info — information
.name  etc.

Countries also use the abbreviation of their country name for extensions.

.ng — representing Nigeria
.us — representing the United State of America.
.uk — representing the United Kingdom

Picking a domain name extension is always based on what your web platform is all about.

What to consider when choosing a Domain name?

When choosing a domain name there are some things to pur into consider so that you can make the best decision.

These tips are narrowed down to choosing a domain name for a blog or website, but it can serve for choosing a domain name for other kinds of web platforms.

Below are some of the things to consider when choosing a domain name:

Purpose.

The core reasons why you want to create a web platform (blog or website) will have a greater part to play when choosing a domain name.

in the case of blogs or websites, they have three major purposes, to educate, inform or promote. Whatever the purpose of your blog or website intended to serve, it needs to be considered when choosing your domain name.

Personal or Business.

Anyone can own a blog, whether individual or Business. The personality of the blog or website owner has to be put into consideration when choosing a domain name. Domain names are unique identity of a blog or website on the internet, it’s necessary to choose a Domain name that represents the owner of the blog or websites.

For a personal blog or website, personal name or names related to the topic/content the individual intend to share about can be selected.

For businesses or organizational bodies, institutions, agency or government, the name of the entity can be used.

Topics.

Topics are also an important factor to consider when choosing a domain name, especially for a niche blog.

You can choose a domain name specifically for the topic the blog or website intends to provide knowledge or information about.

For example, if you intended to blog or share your ideas or opinions on cooking, having a domain name related to cooking is good practice, for example you can have a domain name like www.howtocook.com, people can simply associate what you do with your web address.

Easy to remember.

This is another factor to consider, domain names should be in any possible form simple and easy to remember.

Easy to remember name makes it easier for people to share and talk about your blog or website, which can help you reach more people in the online world.

Checking the availability of a domain name (Domain name search)

There are possibilities that a name you have selected for your web platform will be unavailable. You may choose a preferable  name and discover that it is not available, or it’s already in use by someone else.

Remember what we said earlier, domain names are unique so, not all selected name will be available, reasons being that someone might already be using them, have this in mind when deciding on a domain name.

It’s advisable you use domain name search site like instantdomainsearch.com to check availability of domain name before proceeding to registering your domain name.

How to register a Domain name

Some companies that offer hosting services, also offer domain name registration. But your domain name can be registered by another company, while your web platform is hosted by another company.

I register most of my domain name with whogohost, for as low as N4,000 a year, that is less than $12 a year for the .com extension, the prices of other domain name extensions varies, you can find the prices on their website.

Some other places to register your domain name are:

Bluehost
GoDaddy
Domain.com

So, that is it for now about domain name.

I hope this post helps you understand more about domain name and how to register one?

If you have questions about domain name feel free to drop them in the comments section.