Having your own website all starts with selecting yourwebsitename.com or “Domain Name”. Unfortunately picking a domain name today can be quite a frustrating experience. There are two reasons for this. The first reason being nearly all the .com addresses that use common words are taken. They are either in use or bought up by speculators for resale at exorbitant prices. This often forces a domain name choice that is a play on words, is too long or has an irrelevant title.
Domain Name Tips
- Branding – Your domain name should a reflection of your brand or what your about. your domain name should be memorable and promote trust
- Keep it short – Your domain name should be as short as possible
- Try to get a .com as it is still the king of Top Level Domains. If you can’t get a .com the next best thing is .net and .co
- Avoid hyphens like andrew-schur.com
Domain Name Availability
How do you determine domain name availability? – I prefer to use a big name Domain Name Registrar like Network Solutions to check domain name availability. If the desired name is not available they offer good alternative suggestions. There are thousands of websites offering tools to help users check domain availability. Nearly all are designed to get you to buy a domain name on the spot. Do not rush in to that. We will discuss buying a domain name on the next page “Guide to Buying a Domain Name“.
Moz has a more detailed page on selecting domain names. Visit Moz
Below is Optional Reading
Domain Related Terms
When working with a domain name and your website you will come across terms and acronyms that might seem scary. Don’t feel intimidated.
Domain Name Registrar
What is a Domain Name Registrar? – Simply put, a domain name registrar is a service that allows you to officially register your desired website domain name so that it is unique to you, and no one else can own it. Legitimate domain name registrars are accredited by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). ICANN is a private (non-government), non-profit corporation that has been given the responsibility of allocating IP addresses and managing the Domain Name System. The Domain Name System is what allows you to reach a website by typing in its name, rather than its numerical IP address
What is a “Domain”? – a Domain is the internet name or ip address of a website.
Top Level Domain “TLD”
What is a “TLD” or “Top Level Domain”? – The first level of a domain hierarchy is called the “Top Level Domain. The top level domain is the suffix or text that appears after “.” of a domain name. Examples: .com, .org, .biz and .net. Those few are what you are used to seeing but there are many more. Visit Wikipedia for the complete list.
The Top Level Domain of this site .com
What is a “Domain Name”? – The second level of domain hierarchy is the “Domain Name“. The domain text appears directly to the left of the top level domain. The Domain Name is the name of your website.
The Domain Name of this site is andrewschur
What is a “Root Domain”? – The root domain is the combination of the Domain Name and Root Domain.
The Root Domain of this site is andrewschur.com
What is a Subdomain? – Subdomains are the third level of a domain’s hierarchy and are parts of a larger top-level domain. They are added in front of the root domain and separated from the domain name with a period.
Examples of a Subdomain
- http://www.example.com (“www” is the subdomain)
- http://blog.example.com (“blog” is the subdomain)
- http://forum.example.com (“forum” is the subdomain)
- http://wordpress.example.com (“wordpress” is the subdomain)