What is a Domain Name?
A domain name is the address or the URL that people type into their browser to access your website. Whenever they enter the domain name into their browser’s address bar, it sends a request to the host web server that fetches your website and sends it back to their browser—examples of what a domain name is included are Google.com, Facebook.com, and the Shopify.com.
What is the difference between the domain name and web hosting?
The domain name is different from web hosting because the latter is where your website lives. Many companies offer a combination of domain name registration and web hosting to make it easier for people to start a website. However, there are not any strict requirements as you can buy them separately from different companies.
Why are domain names important?
A domain name is essential because it helps you build the brand that connects with your audience, allows the customers to find you online, and gives you credibility. While many factors determine the success of a website, doing a domain name search offers a range of benefits:
Makes you reachable: If your business isn’t online, it isn’t. You won’t be found online if you own a physical store in a remote city that the average person hasn’t heard of. However, if you build the website around your brand, you are more likely to be found, especially if you optimize the domain name and website for search.
Adds Credibility: While having a domain name is not enough, having your website makes your brand appear more credible. If you own the small business and don’t have a website, some potential customers may not trust you as much as possible. Customers feel confident buying from websites because they can easily find online or portfolio reviews showing that you are the real deal. Having the website is the first step to gaining the credibility in the online world.
Helps you build a brand: The good domain name exposes your brand, especially if it matches your company name. It also makes it easy to create word of mouth because people will remember your business name and pass it on to others. When buying a domain name, make sure it is memorable and positively reflects what your brand stands for.
How much does a domain name cost:
For most .com domain names, you should not expect to pay more than $10-20 per year. Newer domain name extensions such as .bio, .app, or .digital will become expensive as fixed wholesale prices are negotiated between ICANN (the domain regulator) and the registrar. Others like .biz and .biz. net is inexpensive to sign up for because they don’t pack the same punch.
It is worth noting that a domain name is not the one-time purchase. You’re also required to be the renewal fee each year, which generally costs a little more than you’d pay to register the domain. This is because the majority of the registrars offer discounted rates to first-time buyers. Additionally, you will need to pay extra if you include any add-on in your domain name purchase. Popular add-ons include privacy protection, a dedicated email address, and on-demand backup.
How to choose the right field extension
With a variety of the domain name extensions to choose from, how do you know which one is best for the business? The simple answer is that to use the .com extension if available. I say this because .com is the most valuable and used domain extension. According to the GrowthBadger blog, it’s 33 percent more memorable than other top-level domain websites.
If you can’t secure the .com extension, the following best alternatives are .net or .org. However, the latter is traditionally used for non-profit companies, so if this is not suitable, you should choose .net. Alternatively, registering a country domain extension such as .ca or .uk may be a logical step if you are the smaller business in a particular location.
You can also get creative and try some of the newer domain extensions instead of .net or .org. For example, registering a .STORE domain extension will instantly make your e-commerce store stand out. Whether if you own an online store or a physical outlet, new additions like these can attract your business.