Whether you want to start a blog, start a business, have custom email addresses or just have a website to call your own, obtaining a permanent domain allows viewers to reach you easily and gives you the polished and professional look that comes with having your own space on the Internet.
Decide on possible domain names for your website. This will be what visitors will type in their browsers to access your site. It should be short, original and easily remembered.
Choose whether you want a .com, .net, or .org domain name. Websites ending in .com are most popular, but that doesn’t generally mean your website ending in .net or .org will suffer because of it. There are a host of other domain names, including .tv, .biz and .info.
Choose where you want to register your domain name. GoDaddy.com (see link in References) is a popular service and offers affordable hosting packages and business options and add-ons. Even so, there are a ton of other services, including JustHost.com (see References), which offers competitively priced packages as well. Decide which service is right for you before beginning the registration process.
Begin the domain name process by making sure your desired name is available. Once that is complete, continue registering your domain by supplying the necessary information to pay for the service.
Pro Tips & Warnings
If you have a unique name and don’t want anyone launching spoof websites or capitalizing off your name, it may be smart to buy the different variations on your domain name, including the .net, .org and .tv suffixes. Most services offer a discount for multiple domain names, and it is a good measure to protect your brand or image.
Most of these domain registration services have various services that can total up very quickly on your bill. Buy only what you absolutely need at first, and add any services down the line if they become essential. For starters, unless you are redirecting your domain name to an existing blog or website, hosting is a good add-on to consider.
Lastly, read everything carefully and make sure you thoroughly understand what you are paying for. You don’t want to check out and realize you paid for one email address and need five.
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