What is a Domain ?
To put it simply, a domain is an identifiable name that you use to access a site. Behind the scenes, the Internet operates on a series of numbers. Every single computer, mobile device, and website has a unique IP address. The IP address, also known as the Internet Protocol address, is what devices use to access a site’s server and download data so that it appears on your screen.
IP addresses are very long and difficult to remember. So, domains were developed to make things easier for the average Internet user. The domain name is registered to the IP address. Whenever a visitor types your domain into their browser’s address bar, the computer does a quick scan of the Domain Name System server, which is like a massive Internet phone book. The server tells the computer what IP address the domain is attached to and brings the browser to that digital space. All of this happens within seconds.
While it sounds complicated, the process is relatively simple. At the end of the day, domain names make the Internet much more accessible. Instead of remembering a random string of numbers, you can use a memorable domain to access your favorite site.
What About a Domain Extension?
Domain extensions are the letters that go after your domain in your URL. They’re also called top-level domains, or TLD. Some examples would include “.com” or “.gov.” Domain extensions serve a number of different purposes. Primarily, they are used to identify the site’s mission or geographical location. For example, “.com” is for commercial sites while “.gov” is reserved for government-related sites.
Extensions are coordinated and regulated by the International Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, which is commonly referred to as ICANN. This organization is responsible for coming up with new top-level domains. While everyone is familiar with “.org” and “.net” domain extensions, there’s actually over a 1,000 to choose from. ICANN’s new generic top-level domain program added a ton of unique extensions that can help your site stand out.
Extensions are an important part of your domain because it’s the thing you’re paying for. You can register virtually any domain name that you want as long as it doesn’t infringe on someone else’s rights or is already taken. However, there are only so many domain extensions that you can use. In most cases, the popularity of the extension is what determines registration and renewal costs.
Is the Domain the Same as Hosting?
New website owners often confuse domains with hosting. While they both play an important role in getting your site viewed by the masses, they’re two totally different things with their own separate costs. The domain is what’s used to direct visitors to your site. Hosting is where your site is actually stored. Visitors access the hosting server, where all of your site’s content and data is, through the domain.
Many web hosting providers offer registrar services as well, which is usually the source of confusion. However, you don’t have to register your domain with your hosting provider. You can use multiple companies and services. Though, registering the domain with the hosting provider does offer some benefits. For one, you’re only billed by one company. This can help you stay organized and make it easier to keep track of expenses. Secondly, many providers offer a free domain for your first year if you’re a new member.
What is a Domain Name Registrar?
The registrar is the company that handles all of the assigning duties for your new domain. They will register your domain name and assign it to your site’s IP address. The registration and renewal fees cover these services. These companies have to be accredited by ICANN to officially qualify as a registrar.
It’s important to remember that you’re paying for registration services when you buy a domain. Once you have paid those fees, the domain is yours. Registrars do not own the domain or the domain extension. If you’re unhappy with the service you receive, you can always transfer your domain to another company. As long as you keep up with renewal fees, you don’t have to pick a new domain when you change companies. The domain you choose is yours to keep for as long as you want it.
How Much Do Domains Typically Cost?
The price of a domain is influenced by many different factors. The biggest is the popularity of the domain extension and overall availability. For a cheap domain, you can expect to pay around $15.00 a year. During your first year, prices can be as low as $0.99. Many registrars and hosting companies offer attractive introductory fees to get new customers in the door.
After your first year, you will have to renew your domain on a yearly basis to keep it active. At this point, you will be paying the normal price, which is usually between $10.00 and $20.00 for cheap domains. Some registrars also allow you to register the domain for many years at once, which is a great option if you don’t want to worry about forgetting to pay renewal fees.
Now, those prices reflect the average cost of cheap domain names. If you’re looking to invest in a popular domain, you might have to spend a pretty penny. Popular extensions can cost hundreds of dollars a year. If you want to buy an existing domain, the price goes even higher. Some .com domains have sold for several million dollars. In our digital world, domains are a hot commodity, so some of the best and most recognizable have a significant price tag.
Just as the name suggests, PowerHoster is probably the best domain name registrar for cheap domain name registration (at reasonable cost) you have. Started in 2000, PowerHoster is already the leader in the domain name business. The company has been providing popular TLDs at cost-effective price along with unparalleled services one needs alongside domain registration.
PowerHoster is an ICANN-accredited domain name provider in wildwest domains name. The company has more than 10 million domains under management.
GoDaddy is the world’s largest domain name registrar and PowerHoster share the same servers and support team as Godaddy and the leader in the domain name industry. It boasts of 17 million customers and 55+ million domains under management worldwide. The company provides popular top-level domains (TLDs), both general and country-specific domains at a reasonable price. You can get a great domain name from GoDaddy and start an online business or personal website for the general audience worldwide or local audience with your country’s domain name.
Besides, GoDaddy offers easy domain transfers, auctions for bidding, premium domains and discount domain club for interesting discount offers.
What Does the Domain Price Include?
The price that you pay for a domain should include all of the basic services that the registrar has to do. This includes registering your new domain and assigning it to the IP address. The registration and renewal price should also include the ICANN fee. ICANN charges a very small annual fee for every domain on the web. It’s also charged for transfers. Currently, the ICANN fee is only $0.18.
Some registrars also offer additional services. The most popular is domain privacy, which helps to keep some of your personal information on the WHOIS database private. This comes with an additional cost. You may also encounter hidden fees. Make sure that you read the fine print to ensure that the registrar you choose doesn’t have unnecessary fees tacked on.
How to Choose a Solid Domain Name
Your domain is very important when it comes to your site’s brand identity and Internet presence. It’s the first thing visitors will encounter when they visit your site. Before you buy domain name services, take some time to come up with a good idea that you can stick with. Here are a few tips on how to choose the best domain name for when your setting up a site or starting a blog.
Represent Your Site
A domain name should always represent the site. It should give visitors a good idea of what to expect before they click. The most popular method for choosing a domain name is to use your personal name or company name. You could also include your location, market niche, or any other identifier.
Make It Easy to Remember
Domain names are meant to be memorable. Steer clear of hyphens or random numbers. The fewer the characters, the better. You don’t want to confuse your visitors or make them accidentally visit a site that’s not yours. Try saying your domain name out loud. If it’s easy to pronounce, it’s easier to remember.
Make Sure That It’s Legal and Available
Before you try buying a domain, you need to make sure that it’s available. Do a quick Google search and take a look at the WHOIS database. The database includes every registered domain. If you find that the name you want is already taken, you can also use the database to find some contact information for the owner.
Another thing to consider is the legality of the name. The last thing you want to deal with after paying for a domain is a lawsuit. Make sure that the name doesn’t include any trademarks.
Use a Domain Name Generator
If all else fails, you can use a domain name generator. Advanced generators can help you come up with a great domain name in only a few minutes. They use basic information about your site to create options that are relevant and memorable.
Consider Domain Hacking
Domain hacking is a fun way to make your domain stand out. It involves using the domain and the extension to create memorable words or phrases. Some examples include “burri.to” or “fun.zone.” Just use your imagination and get creative. Hacked domains are easy to remember and can be used for marketing.