When building your first website you need to choose a domain name. A domain name is (most of the time) the name of your website. Your chosen domain name is what visitors of your website type in a web browser. Therefore, it is important to choose a domain name that fits the content of your website.
Choosing a fitting domain name is important, because visitors generally try to see what your website is about. If you are selling cars for example, you do not want to show your website to people looking for a bike. A domain name should therefore reflect what your website is about.
How to register your domain name
Registering your domain name can be done before building your website. This way you know for sure that your website domain name is available for use. Because the internet is getting more websites every day, it is important to register your domain name on time. There are 2 ways to register your domain name for your website.
Registering only your domain name
Registering only your domain name is an option if you do not want to directly build your website. You reserve a domain name so that nobody else can use that name. When you have chosen a webhosting company, you can assign that domain name to your website. This way you do only pay for a domain name.
There are a view companies that make it possible to get a domain name. A few examples of those companies are:
Domain names can be purchased from multiple vendors for different prices. The companies who offer to register a domain name do all basically the same, so there are not that many differences between them. The only thing to lookout for is how long you register your domain name. You need to renew your domain name after a certain period, which is important if you wish to keep that domain name for yourself.
Choosing your webhosting and domain name
If you want your website to be accessible from the internet, you need more than only a domain name. You need a company which will host the website for you, so everybody is able to visit your website. Most if not all webhosting parties offer the possibility to register a domain name. Registering a domain name this way is easier and makes it possible to directly start creating your website.
You can choose any hosting company you like, but be aware that there are differences in speed, functionalities and availability. A hosting company can have impact on your ability to be findable in Google, which is why we recommend to do good research before choosing a webhosting company.
A few companies that offer easy to set-up webhosting (including WordPress hosting) are:
It is important to choose a good webhosting company, because it has a big impact on your search engine optimalisation (SEO). There are multiple factors which are important to get your website visible to people searching on the internet, but a good webhosting company is an important factor in ranking higher.
Why a good domain name is important
The domain name is one of the first things your (potential) visitor will see. Therefore, it is important to make a good decision on which domain name you are going to use. If you are going to make a local site for your specific country, you may want to choose a domain name with your specific country code. A few examples of these are:
- .de (Germany)
- .nl (The Netherlands)
- .fi (Finland)
There are many other specific (country) codes for your website. Which you can choose from. Nowadays it is even possible to register domain name with .blog .store or .me for example. Which domain name code you choose can be important for your website and depends on your specific wishes.
Important things to consider when choosing a domain name
When you choose a domain name, there are a few important things to keep in mind. People need to be able to easily remember your domain name, your domain name should not contain spelling errors and need to be easy to type. Therefore, there are a few things you should not do when choosing a domain:
- Do not make your domain name unnecessary long
- Do not use numbers, special characters and other difficult to find keystrokes
- Do not use difficult words which can be hard to type
If you plan to choose a domain name, you basically need it to be as simple as possible. Do not choose a domain name where you change the letter o to a 0 (zero). This will confuse people which are trying to type your domain name in their web browsers. A simple domain is therefore important for visitors of your site.
How to choose your domain name
Choosing a domain name can be a difficult task. We recommend to choose a domain name which fits the goal of your website. If you are planning to blog about cars, then choose a domain name with “car” in it. This way people immediately know what the content on your website is about. If you are trying to create a brand, then you should use your brand name as your domain name. When choosing a brand name, it is important to have a brand strategy. Without one it could be unclear for visitors what your website is about, which is not something you would want (or maybe you do, but you get the point).
How do domain names work
How domain names work can be a little bit technical. The only thing you need to know is that it makes your website findable via a simple URL. Without a domain name your website simply is not visible by the general public.
The simplest way to explain how domain name works, is comparing it with phone numbers. Websites use an IP address (phone number), which can be difficult to remember for people. Many numbers in your phone have a name assigned to them, so you directly know who is calling you.
Domain names work in a similar fashion. The domain name gives your websites IP address an easier to type name, which makes it for humans possible to connect to your website. Your chosen domain name gets registered in a register, which redirects everybody searching on your domain name to your website.
Everything you need to know about domain names
We have discussed the most important things you need to know about domain names. A domain name is an important part in creating a website, because it is one of the first thing your visitors see and/ or type. The domain name is the first thing you need to have in creating a website, because it makes it accessible for the whole internet.