Website Hosting - All About Domain
"What's in a name?" Shakespeare asks in Romeo and Juliet. In the
case of your web site the answer is: quite a lot.
A domain name is the English (or other) language designator for
your site. Because of the way the Internet functions, that name is associated with an IP address, a numeric
identifier that computers and network components use to connect a browser to a web
It's not mandatory that a site has a name. But directing visitors
by IP address can quickly generate difficulties. Having an IP address IS mandatory, since it's ultimately the
way a web site is located by other computers and network software.
In the early days of the Internet the name was chosen carefully
in order to help a person remember the URL. That made it easier to type, too. With hotspots on a page, great
search engines, social networking and other contemporary tools, that's not as important
But from a marketing perspective, it still helps to have a good
name. It's still beneficial to have a site called 'CheapTVs.com' if what you sell are inexpensive TV sets.
Calling your site, 'InexpensiveElectronicVisualDisplayDevices.com' may describe your business in some way,
but it's a little harder to refer a new person to your site.
Which name you choose can, therefore, affect how much traffic
your site gets, how soon. Sooner or later, if you have information and/or products/services that people want,
word will get around. But having a good name can certainly help. Love them or hate them, the Google company
Of course, the fact is that there are millions of web sites
around the world. That means, you don't necessarily get the name of your first
ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) is
the internationally recognized authority for managing IP addresses across the worldwide Internet, along with
the top-level domain name-parts (.com, .net, .org, .edu, and so forth). But registering a name is done by
simply contacting any of a hundred organizations that work as intermediaries to establish and track the
GoDaddy, Register.com, Network Solutions and a
great many others provide the service for anywhere from free to a few dollars per month or year. You contact them
by navigating to their web site. Then, using a feature they all provide, you can select a possible name. They use
something called whois and other software to determine if the name is already claimed. Or, you can check yourself
at www.whois.com. Registration
is for a limited time, but typically renewable in perpetuity provided you pay the (usually annual)
You may have to go through several choices to find a domain name
that isn't already in use. With so many millions of sites, the odds of you getting your first choice is slim,
unless you have a highly unusual imagination. But, it's also true that domains tend to die or expire. As they
do, the name becomes available for use by someone new.
A method for getting on a 'waiting list' is available. You
register the name you want and if and when the name becomes available, you are offered the chance to claim
it. Naturally, there's competition even on the waiting list for 'good' names. There are many different ways
of establishing priority that vary by company. At any given time there are thousands of so-called auctions
going on to bid on names.
Give some thought to your new domain name and research its
availability, but don't stress over it. The name isn't everything. After all, if Google had built a search
engine that delivered usable results only 10% of the time, their name would be mud.
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