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Step 2 Getting your domain name

But ''What is a domain name? Do I need one?

Well, if you wish to have a website, yes, you must get one of these. Essentially, a domain name is the address for your website so that other people can find you. It is just like the address you have for your house or apartment. No address, no visitors: it's as simple as that. It is impossible for your site to be on the Internet without it. So you gotta get this.

Now, some of you may have decided on your domain name before you built your site. Fine. That's quite OK. But here are some points to consider when deciding what you would like to call your site:

  • Think of a name that is attractive
  • Have a short name that is easy to remember and type in a browser
  • Do I want my domain name to reflect the content and intent of my site?
  • Don't include already trade-marked names or titles in your title

Sometimes, especially for new businesses that don't already have an off-line image already established, it could well be a good idea to include a reference to your business or community activity within the domain name. For example, a poster design company called Designer Art Posters could get a name DesignerArtPosters.com and this could also help in getting search engine listings when someone types in 'art posters' when they do a search.

The shorter the name the less likely people are to make a mistake when typing in your name and the catchier the name the more likely people are to remember it and be willing to pass it on to friends. The only trouble these days is that so many names have been registered that you may need to be a little inventive in coming up with a name that is available. You can hyphenate your name too, to have Birthday-Cards-For-Young-Lovers.com and this will also make it easier to read.

How do I know if he domain name I want is available?

Well, when you go the registrar link below they have a box where you can type in the name you have considered and within a few seconds a result is returned telling you if it is available or not. If it isn't, they will suggest variety of slightly different alternatives which may well be suitable. If you dislike those, it's back to the drawing board.

Won't it be expensive?

Well, if you had tried a few years ago you would have been paying at least $70 for the privilege of your own domain!

But, these days, it shouldn't be. Not any more. Not to say, though that it can't be. Indeed, one of the biggest and earliest registrars is still plugging domain names at nearly 4x the price that you need to pay.

Thus, if you have to pay more than $10 per year for a domain name then you are being seriously overcharged, so run the hills as quickly as you can.

The registrar I use and suggest you do too, is  and they only charge at most $8.95 and there are often campaigns that bring even that figure down somewhat.

I have virtually all my domains with them (the ones I don't have I wish I did) and they have given excellent service to date. They have a comprehensive set of tools to manage your domains (particularly nameserver changes for the more advanced user) and all changes are extremely quickly enacted. Plus their support is very quick if you have a question. Again, it's 24/7, which is such a blessing.

So, Action Step 2 Getting your Domain Name

It's simple then. Get your very own domain name at

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