Think of your domain name as your identity on the web. It is how you want to be viewed by the outside world. While we hope your web hosting services would provide you with a domain name for free, this is how you go about purchasing your domain name on your own. By doing so, you are registering your specific name with the ICANN, regardless of what domain registry you use. A personalized domain name is going to legitimize your efforts to your viewers. Future clients or peers want to see a website with the set-up similar to www.yourbusiness.com because it demonstrates that you take pride in the work you do. While many people now have websites, buying and registering your own domain shows you are forward thinking and aware of the emerging technologies. You want to take advantage of all opportunities available to you! With this in mind, below are my suggestions for buying a domain name.
When buying a domain name:
- Make sure to choose a reputable registrar: Examples of accredited registrars are places like GoDaddy, Google, and Dotster. GoDaddy is a very common choice for domain purchase because it is affordable, has an easy sign-up process, and offers reselling opportunities if necessary down the line. GoDaddy also provides hosting and online marketing packages, so it is definitely worth checking out! Regardless of where you register and buy your domain, you should definitely shop around and compare prices. The domain suffix you use when registering will determine the price, but a name shouldn’t be too expensive. You will, however, need to be creative, as many names are already being taken or selling at outrageous prices. Domain names normally shouldn’t run more than $10 dollars a year.
- Register the domain name for a long period of time: Especially if you are creating a business, it is important to register your desired name for the foreseeable future. When first registering, costs are at their lowest, so buying the name for 3-5 years will be saving money in the long run. Additionally, when running a business and keeping a website going, it is nice to avoid the hassle of re-registering every year.
- Get Domain Privacy Protection: While protections have become much better in recent years, you want to be sure that the information you provide when registering your name is protected. When you pay for additional privacy protection, you prevent yourself from getting spam to your home, place of business, and means of communication.
- Once you choose, purchase quickly: Building personal and business websites is a common practice. If you find a great name for your purpose and is available, you should definitely purchase it. In the end, you can always let it expire if you shut down or decide not to use it. Regardless, have fun with the naming of your website!
Purchasing a domain name is a fairly straight forward process, but involves determining what works best for you and your business, relating to names and costs. In many cases, it might make more sense to use the domain creation option through your web hosting service, as I mentioned above. While it can be more difficult to register this name somewhere else later, if you find you are happy with the web hosting service, it might be worth going all in.