Your domain name must be unique, reflect your purpose well, and easily spell if you want to mark your online presence.
In fact, buying a domain name is the first step to building an online business, but you don’t have to spend a fortune on it. Instead, it must be affordable and provide security to your site as hackers and spammers are everywhere.
But aren’t all domain names equal?
The answer is NO.
There are different types of domain names available with different extensions, each with its unique significance.
If you are on the lookout for a domain name but don’t know anything about how it works and why you need to choose the right one, this article can help you.
Let’s start uncovering the concepts, and then I’ll discuss the best places to buy a domain name.
What is a Domain Name?
A domain name is a virtual address of a website, which people can type in their browser and land on your website.
Simply put, think of your website as your house, then your address would be the domain name.
Your house ~ Website
Your address ~ Domain name
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is the regulatory body that manages the entire domain name system architecture. As of 2017, 330M+ domains were registered in the world.
Domain name: geekflare.com
Why Were Domain Names Created?
The internet consists of a large number of interconnected computers via a global cable network. Each network asset is given an IP address for identification. An IP address is represented by a string of numbers, which is long and difficult to remember.
In the absence of domain names, you would have to enter these long, hard to remember numbers.
Domain names were created to solve this issue. These are usually kept as the brand name, so they are rather easy to remember. You can type it in the address bar of your browser to enter a website easily.
How Do Domain Names Work?
Domain names operate under a Domain Name System (DNS). It is an internet address book that helps direct visitors to a website that they want to access.
For example, if you want to visit Geekflare (https://www.geekflare.com/), you would enter the URL in your browser and wait for the result. In this tiny amount of time, many communications happen between your browser and internet systems.
First, the request goes to a DNS system that checks if the URL is available in its database or not. If yes, it translates the domain name into the corresponding IP address and locates the server where the website is stored. Hence, you will be capable of visiting Geekflare.
What are the Types Of Domain Names?
There are different types of domain names available such as:
Top Level Domains (TLDs)
TLDs are present at the top spot in the domain name internet hierarchy. You can find thousands of different TLDs. It is recommended that you stick with the top-level TLDs to get more global visibility and trust from users.
Some popular TLDs are .com, .info, .org, .co, .net and more.
Country code Top-level Domains (ccTLDs)
ccTLDs are tied technically to various countries. Every country has a ccTLD. But, it does not mean that you have to use it necessarily just because you belong or live in a particular country.
If you want to target visitors from a specific country, then you might want to use it.
Examples: .in, .co, .au, .uk, etc.
Generic Top-level Domains (gTLD)
It’s just a different variation of top-level domains. You can use it for specific use cases such as .edu for educational institutions, .mil for military organizations, and more. For this, your organization must fit certain criteria.
These domains represent a domain’s second part. It doesn’t make them less valuable or less authoritative.
Example: ‘geekflare’ in www.geekflare.com
Some country-code second-level domains are .co.uk, .gov.au, etc.
Third Level Domains
These domains are a part of a domain name and are placed below second-level domains in the hierarchy.
Example: ‘www’ in www.geekflare.com
Nowadays, the internet is full of ambiguity; hence, you don’t necessarily need to use ‘www’. You can use it if you like or if you want to add a subdomain to your current domain for creating a blog, hosting apps, building an eCommerce store, etc.
To sum up:
Website URL: https://www.geekflare.com/
Top-level domain: com
Second-level domain: geekflare
Third-level domain or hostname: www
So, when you want to buy a domain name, multiple providers are commonly known as domain name registrars.
Moreover, a lot of hosting providers like Bluehost offer free domains. But if you don’t need a hosting service and just a domain, you can buy it from the platforms I’m going to mention next.
So, have you decided on the name yet? If not, Check out these tools to find good domain names.
Now, let’s look at some of the best domain name providers.
Choose your desired domain from a wide range of options available on Namecheap. It simplifies domain name search by offering you an interactive search tool to display the available domain names in seconds.
If you register a domain name with them, you get benefits of a free email address, free privacy protection for your domain and data, and DNSSEC security for free to safeguard visitors from malicious intent.
You can even join their VIP Rewards Club to save more money while you purchase more domains. Use their industry-based premium services and products at very minimal cost just after you are done with your domain search and secure it by purchasing it.
Next, you can also avail of their additional services like reliable and secure hosting for your domain using the affordable plans starting at just $2.88/month, SSL protection for your data at $10 onwards, and a private email synced to your domain.
ICANN accredits Cloudflare for providing a highly secure domain name registration even to high-profile domains. It registers your domain and manages it securely and easily with greater transparency, no hidden charges, and no markup pricing.
Many domain name registration companies out there will offer huge discounts during the purchase of domain names initially and later charge incremental fees and renewal costs to surprise you. On the other hand, Cloudflare Registrar will only charge you the amount they pay for the domain name to the registry.
No add-ons or surprise fees will ever be demanded by them; plus, you will get many features such as two-factor authentication, a security-focused support team, and multi-user support to give you a relaxation that your domain name is safe. It also supports common TLDs, including .net, .org, .com, .co, and many more.
To register certain TLDs, you may need to meet some additional regulations and requirements, but don’t worry; Cloudflare helps you there. It also integrates with CDN, WAF, and Native DNS services to provide you with better serviceability and security.
For Enterprise Plan, you get Custom Domain Protection, which provides the highest tier of security. It will protect your organization’s domain from getting hijacked by offering high touch along with offline and online verification of the changes happening to your account.
Other features included in Cloudflare Registrar are multi-user support, 2F-authentication, automatic domain renewal, WHOIS management, registrar locking, domain transfers in bulk, free DNSSEC, and a developer-friendly API.
Use Hostinger’s domain checker and find your unique domain. It offers one of the most affordable domain registration along with dedicated support and instant activation. Hostinger is an ICANN-accredited domain registrar.
Hostinger allows you to renew your domain at a lower price but premium service due to their partnership with TLD owners. It lets you transfer your existing domain from another service provider to Hostinger pretty straightforwardly. Also, use their domain privacy protection to avoid spammers.
They replace your data with common information to keep you protected always. Their domain checker catches popular domains out of different TLDs such as .com, .net, .org, and more. Not to mention, Hostinger provides free domains as well included in their web hosting plans.
You can go with the latest extension, i.e., online, which is powerful, affordable, and unique without compromising the quality and make your online presence even better. Or, try the .XYZ extension, which is short, trendy, and cheap so that you can name the domains without restrictions in the language, limits, or labels. It helps you target your customers with keywords included in your domain name.
Hostinger’s domain name plans start from as low as $0.99/year.
Make your first impression exceptional by choosing a unique domain name from Bluehost. You will find many unique options, including popular ones like .com, .net, .org, .tech, .co, .blog, and more.
Bluehost comes with a simple control panel where you can manage your domains along with all their aspects. You can even change the DNS records across different domains easily. Go for auto-renewal to make your domain available for others all the time and protect it from getting expired or lost.
Once you choose your desired domain, Bluehost gives you the freedom to mitigate unauthorized transfers by locking it. You can also unlock it anytime you need if you want to transfer it.
You can forward your visitors to other locations on the website, plus, access the whole set of features and get your domain quickly among the sea of options available. Secure your domain with domain privacy to keep personal info locked from spammers and thieves.
Bluehost integrates with Microsoft 365, giving you the chance to add your domain name to your email id, such as [email protected]
Start your domain search from Domain.com and buy the one you love out of various available TLDs and 25+ country code TLDs or ccTLDs. You will gain many features with your domain registration, such as Let’s Encrypt SSL for FREE to secure your site.
Gain complete control on the DNS of your domain name for life and forward emails automatically to other secure email addresses. In addition to that, protect the domain name from unauthorized transfer or being “hijacked”.
Domain.com also lets you transfer your domain name and/or update DNS at the current registrar. Register your domain name starting at just $2.99/year. As a result of their superior support and affordable pricing, you don’t have to pay extra while buying your domain name.
Go for the Basic plan if you want just one domain name, but choose their Ultra or Deluxe plans if you want unlimited domains.
Trusted by 20M+ customers, GoDaddy offers a huge selection of domain names at low prices. Apart from widely available extensions like .com, .in, .io, .biz, etc., it also comes up with featured extensions such as .expert, .coach, .fit, .beauty, .website, .wedding, .cloud, and .dev to help you find the domain complementing your business.
For example, you will run a beauty website to offer beauty products and services; you can choose the extension .beauty. It will help you stand out from the crowd and let your customers find and recognize you easily.
To register and set up your domain, you don’t necessarily need heavy technical skills. You can have real-time monitoring of your domain to keep it available and running all the time and serve your customers better. They allow a maximum of 100 subdomains to create your customized web address.
Use simple and quick tools to add your domain to your existing website or start making a website from scratch after the registration. Having more experience than others in the field, GoDaddy helps you discover the right domain name for your safe and secure business.
GoDaddy is a leading domain name registrar that you can trust, unlike others. They use powerful search engines to help you find a domain name from the web’s massive list of options after entering a keyword in their search box.
Lock your domain with Business Protection so that no one can transfer your domain without seeking permission and your details remain safe from crooks and snoops. Furthermore, it also publishes digital business cards for your partners and customers, which helps them find you easily. Check your domain name availability for different extensions and get yourself registered with them.
Find your online spot from 300+ names on Google Domains and leverage the high-performance, support, and security by Google.
With domain registration, you can get the benefits of some add-ons like 1-click DNSSEC, 2-step verification, privacy protection, email forwarding, and more. DNS servers running on Google have robust infrastructure to provide you with extra reliability and serviceability.
Just choose a domain that you feel is right for your business from endings like .com, .photography, .cafe, .dev, .page, .app, and many more. Find a name that best describes your business and helps people find you by using their suggestion tools.
No matter what type of website you want, be it a simple blog, portfolio, or eCommerce, you don’t need any specific knowledge and skills on coding. With their partners and tools, you can build a professional site all by yourself.
Try built-in, free email forwarding and create a maximum of 100 email addresses easily, or you can also create a professional email with tools from Google Workspace. Market your online business to cast a strong presence before your audience using tools like Google Ads to increase traffic, shop visits, and phone calls on a minimal budget.
Convert your online projects into a real business and make it official with the domain name you can find on Gandi. It lets you search for your desired domain from 700+ extensions along with their powerful suggestion tools.
By registering yourself with them, you also get an SSL certificate for free to secure your domain name. Additionally, you will get two mailboxes for free, each with 3GB of storage for unlimited email aliases and forwarding.
Gandi allows you to manage domain names and other products from any device seamlessly due to its intuitive and slick interface. You can also get the benefit of data privacy, DNSSEC, unlimited support, DNS management, third-party application integrations in one 1-click, and detailed documentation.
Gandi offers automatic renewal feature for your domain names so that you can renew your domains before it expires and save it from being taken by someone else. In case you already have a domain name, Gandi also helps you transfer the domain to their platform.
Dynadot helps you search your domain suitable for you or your business requirements. To find a domain name, simply enter a keyword or a name you thought of and search it to check which TLDs are available for your name.
Once you get yours, add your domain name to the cart and without any delays, register your domain at an affordable price. Dynadot’s powerful account management is easy for everyone, from beginners to experienced users and investors.
Their two-step authentication helps you lock your domain name and secure it from unauthorized transfers. You can update your domains in bulk using their bulk modification tool. Dynadot lets you manage contact records and name servers easily using their smart folders or bulk actions.
You can also organize your domain names using the smart folder and perform changes easily across segmented domains. Register one domain name or multiple domain names with Dynadot instantly with a click. They also provide you with a website builder to help you create a website and manage it after completing your domain registration.
If you wish to buy a domain name but it’s not currently available, you can keep an eye on that domain name and get an alert if that becomes available either for purchase or bidding. Additionally, manage your domain name bids using their auction tools to increase your winning chances.
Get benefit of 5 MX records, 10 email aliases, etc., with DNS settings. You can get featured domains like .info, .me, .CC, .MX, .site, .STUDIO, .ac, and .HOW. Apart from this, if you want to return the domain, they will credit your purchase back, subtracting a deletion fee. You can even carry out a smooth ownership exchange.
Bonus Tips on Choosing Your Domain Name
Go for any one of the domain registrars you find is suitable, but make sure the domain name you choose must reflect who you are and your business.
So, follow some simple tips to find the ideal domain name for your business:
- Always choose an easily memorable and SEO-friendly domain name, Keep it short and try to choose a TLD. You can also use a suggestion tool to get some ideas.
- Focus on your target audience while choosing a domain name. For this, you can use target keywords in your domain.
- Avoid using hyphens, non-Unicode characters, and numbers. It may distract the visitors or confuse them.
- Use a domain checker to find a domain name with popular and targeted keywords.
- If you buy multiple domains, try creating names with similar variations with popular domain name extensions.
- Emphasize domain privacy to avoid your details ending up on public databases such as WHOIS.
- Try not to procrastinate if you are serious about creating a domain name. If you found the one you are looking for, grab it. Act fast before it’s too late for your domain to be registered.
Choosing the right domain name is essential to an online business. It must be unique and, at the same time, easy to understand for your users and find it. Hence, consider the points I’ve mentioned above to choose a domain name and pick the available one that best describes your site.