Last Updated on November 28, 2023 by Azizi Katepa
In the ever-evolving landscape of the internet, a domain name is your digital fingerprint, a virtual address that defines your online presence.
It’s a critical element of your brand; choosing the right one can make a difference in your online success.
In this post, we’ll dive into the significance of domain names and how to select the perfect one for your needs.
What is a Domain Name?
A domain name is the web address users type into their browsers to access your website. It’s the unique, human-readable string that maps to the numeric IP address of your web server.
“Essentially, a domain name is the gateway to your online world. For example,” www.example.com” is a domain name.”Essentially, a domain name acts as the gateway to your online world. For example, “www.example.com” is a domain name.
Why Are Domain Names Important?
- Branding: Your domain name is a vital element of your brand. It’s often the first thing potential visitors see or hear and can leave a lasting impression. A firm, memorable domain name can help build brand recognition and trust.
- Accessibility: A good domain name should be easy to spell, remember, and pronounce. If your domain name is user-friendly, it’s more likely that people will find and revisit your website.
- SEO Benefits: While domain names don’t directly impact search engine rankings, they can influence user behavior and click-through rates. A relevant, keyword-rich domain name can help in your SEO efforts.
- Credibility: A custom domain name (e.g., yourname.com) looks more professional and trustworthy than a generic or free domain (e.g., yourname.blogspot.com). It signals that you are serious about your online presence.
How Do Domain Names Work?
To understand how domain names work, we will look at what happens when you enter them in your browser.
When you enter a domain name in your web browser, it first sends a request to a global server network that forms the Domain Name System (DNS).
These servers then look up the name or DNS servers associated with the domain and forward the request to those name servers.
For example, if your website is hosted on Hostinger, then its name server information will have DNS records like this:
These name servers are computers managed by your hosting company. Your hosting provider will forward your request to the computer where your website is stored.
This computer is called a web server. It has special software installed (Apache and Nginx are two popular web server software).
The web server now fetches the web page and pieces of information associated with it.
Finally, it then sends this data back to the user’s browser.
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How is Domain Name Different from a Website and Web Hosting?
A website comprises HTML pages, CSS files, website builder software, images, and more. It gives you and your business an online presence.
If the domain name is the web address of your website, then web hosting is the home/ house where your website lives.
This is the actual computer where your website’s files are stored. Such computers are called servers and are offered as a service by hosting companies.
To create your website, you need both domain name and web hosting. You need both to make any website, whether a personal, small business website or an eCommerce store.
However, it’s important to remember that they are two separate services, and you can buy them from two different companies.
You may wonder how it would work if you bought them from two companies.
You need to edit your domain name settings and enter the Name Server information provided by your hosting company. Name Server information defines where to send user requests for your domain name.
We recommend getting both your domain name and hosting from the same company. This allows you to manage them under the same account easily—for example, wpwebtools and hosting from Hostinger.
Choosing the Right Domain Name
Selecting the perfect domain name for your website is a crucial decision. Here are some tips to help you make the right choice:
- Keep It Simple: Short, concise, easy-to-spell domain names are more memorable and user-friendly.
- Reflect Your Brand: Ideally, your domain name should reflect your brand, business, or the content of your website. This makes it more relevant to your target audience.
- Avoid Hyphens and Numbers: These can make your domain name harder to remember and spell. Stick with letters only.
- Consider Keywords: If possible, include relevant keywords in your domain name. This can benefit your SEO efforts.
- Choose the Right Domain Extension: While “.com” is the most popular choice, there are many other domain extensions like “.net,” “.org,” “.io,” and more. Select one that aligns with your website’s purpose.
- Check Availability: Use domain registrars like GoDaddy, Namecheap, or Google Domains to check if your desired domain name is available.
- Protect Your Brand: Consider registering similar domain name variations to prevent competitors from taking them.
When Do You Need to Register a Domain Name?
According to the latest Internet usage statistics, there are currently 370.7 million registered domain names worldwide. 37.20% of registered domain names are top-level domains (TLDs).
On average, there are 33,000 new domain registrations every day.
This means all the good domain names are registered as we speak. Chances are that someone may register a domain name you are thinking of, so it’s wise to write it as soon as you think of an idea.
This is why all intelligent entrepreneurs proactively register domain names before launching a business.
Domain names are cheap, and you can register them for a year. If you decide not to pursue the online business idea, you can let the domain expire.
The bottom line is if you are serious about building a business, you should register a domain name immediately.
It will help protect your brand’s identity, business name, and future business ideas.
How Much Does a Domain Name Cost?
Typically, a .com domain name costs $14.99 / year. The cost of a domain varies based on each extension or TLD (top-level domain). Some are even more expensive than this.
We don’t recommend using anything but .com domains because everybody remembers a .com domain, and your smartphone keyboards have a pre-built key for .com.
For more details, see our expert guide on how much a domain name costs, along with tips on how to avoid hidden fees.
Do I Need a Website to Register a Domain Name?
No, you do not need a website to register a domain name. You can write a domain name and make a website later. You can also register a domain name and set up a temporary website or coming soon.
Many entrepreneurs treat domain names like digital real estate, so they register a good domain name and hold it for the right buyer to purchase it for profit.
How to Choose the Best Domain Name
Domain names play a vital role in your website’s identity and success. This is why you must carefully consider the domain name you choose.
However, it’s also important to not overthink it. Otherwise, you will never get past the research phase.
Here are some general tips to keep in mind when searching for the perfect domain name:
- Ensure your domain name is easy to pronounce and spell and as short as possible.
- Stick with the .com extension because most users find it easier to remember than other domain extensions like .biz, .us, etc.
- Target your specific area or niche if applicable, as this can make your domain more relevant.
- Use your keywords and brand name in the domain name search. For example, stargardeninghouston.com is more SEO-friendly than stargardeningcompany.com
- Do not use numbers or hyphens in your website domain. It makes them more complex to pronounce and difficult to remember.
Need more advice? See our expert tips on finding the best domain name for your website.
You can also use a domain name generator like Nameboy to speed up your search for the right domain name.
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How to Register a Domain Name (Step by Step)
You can register a domain name from any of the top domain registrars that ICANN authorizes to register domain names.
To register a domain name, follow these steps:
- Choose a Domain Name: Select a unique and relevant domain name for your website or business. Make sure it reflects your brand and is easy to remember.
- Find a Domain Name Registrar: Research domain registrars like GoDaddy, Google Domains, or Namecheap to purchase your domain. Compare prices, features, and user reviews to choose the one that suits your needs.
- Search for Your Domain Name: Use the registrar’s search tool to check if your desired domain name is available. You might need to choose a different name or try variations if it’s already registered.
- Finalize Your Domain Name Choice: Once you’ve found an available domain, register. Some registrars may offer suggestions or additional services like domain privacy protection.
- Choose a Domain Name Suffix: Select a domain suffix, such as .com, .net, or others, based on your preferences and the availability of your choice.
- Purchase and Register Your Domain Name: Follow the registrar’s instructions to complete the purchase and registration process. This typically involves providing your contact information and payment details.
Remember to renew your domain annually to maintain ownership. Ensure you keep accurate contact information with the registrar to receive renewal notices and important domain-related information.
Since there are so many different registrars, we will cover a few popular ways to register a domain name, and you can choose the one that best fits your needs.
How to Register a Domain Name with Hostinger (Free)Buy Web Hosting Now
Hostinger is another well-known domain registrar and web hosting solution.
They offer a free domain name when you purchase any of their web hosting plans, starting at $2.69 per month with WPWebTools’s 81% off Hostinger coupon.
In addition to a free domain name, you’ll also get a free SSL certificate, a free business email address, and more.
Hostinger is excellent for creating a website and registering a free domain name.
‘To start, visit the Hostinger website. ‘To start, visit the Hostinger website and click the ‘Claim Deal’ button.
Domain Name Registration and Hosting
Once you’ve chosen the perfect domain name, you must register it through a domain registrar. Be sure to keep your contact information current to avoid losing your domain.
After registering your domain, you’ll need web hosting to store your website’s files and data. Many domain registrars offer hosting services, making managing both aspects of your online presence convenient in one place.
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The Parts of a Domain Name
A domain typically has two parts: the second and the top level. If read left-to-right, these parts decrease in specificity.
Second-Level Domain (SLD)
“The second-level domain is the unique identifier for your website. It’s part of your domain that comes before “.com” or another extension. “The second-level domain is the unique identifier for your website. Part of your domain comes before “.com” or another extension.
“If you’re building a website for your business, consider buying a domain that reflects your business’s name. This will make it easier for people to find your website without spending much time scouring Google for it.
For instance, wpwebtools.com’s second-level domain is “wpwebtools”. If you’re building a website for your business, consider buying a domain that reflects your business’s name.
This will make it easier for people to find your website without spending much time scouring Google for it. For instance, wpwebtools.com’s second-level domain is “wpwebtools”.
Top-Level Domain (TLD)
The top-level domain is the extension or the part of your domain that comes after your second-level domain.
It specifies what type of entity your organization registers as on the internet. For example, HubSpot’s top-level domain is “.com” since we’re a commercial entity in the United States.
“Most American businesses also register their website with”“.com”. In fact, according to data from Verisign, the largest TLD in 2021 was .com, with 158.6 million reported domain names in the domain name base.”Most American businesses also register their website with “.com”. In fact, according to data from Verisign, the largest TLD in 2021 was .com, with 158.6 million reported domain names in the domain name base.
What is a domain name example?
“An example of a domain name is wpwebtools.com. This is made up of a second-level domain “”wpwebtool””) and a top-level domain (“.com).”An example of a domain name is wpwebtools.com. This is made up of a second-level domain (“wpwebtools”) and a top-level domain (“.com).
“Other examples of popular domain names are “YouTube.com”, “irs.go”, and “tiktok.com” Other examples of popular domain names are “youtube.com”, “irs.gov”, and “tiktok.com”
Types of Domain
There are several types of domain names, including:
Generic Top-Level Domains (gTLD)
gTLD refers to the best-known and most broadly used TLDs:
.com is the most popular by far. As of January 2022, 54% of global websites used a .com top-level domain. The next most popular — .ru — is only used by 5%.
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Country Code Top-Level Domains (ccTLD)
These two-letter TLDs refer to specific geographical locations. Here are the most common ones:
- .cn (China)
- .ru (Russia)
- .de (Germany)
- .br (Brazil)
- .au (Australia)
- .uk (United Kingdom)
- .nl (Netherlands)
- .tz (Tanzania)
- .ke (Kenya)
- .sa (South Africa)
Internationalized Country Code Top-Level Domains (IDN ccTLD)
Internationalized Country Code Top-Level Domains (IDN ccTLDs) are a specialized subset of country code top-level domains (ccTLDs) that allow domain names to be registered and displayed in characters and scripts other than the traditional Latin-based ASCII characters.
- Definition: An Internationalized Country Code Top-Level Domain (IDN ccTLD) is a top-level domain in the Internet’s Domain Name System (DNS) that supports domain names in non-Latin scripts or characters. These domains are designed to make the internet more accessible and user-friendly for people whose native languages use non-Latin scripts.
- Purpose: IDN ccTLDs help to promote internet inclusivity and multilingualism by allowing individuals and organizations to use domain names in their native languages and scripts.
- Examples: For example, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates were among the first countries to introduce IDN ccTLDs, enabling them to use their national alphabets in internet domain suffixes.
- Benefits: IDN ccTLDs help improve internet access and content availability for a broader range of users globally, fostering linguistic and cultural diversity online.
A subdomain is a domain that is part of a larger domain, appearing before the root domain name (e.g., blog.hubspot.com). Since a subdomain appears to the left of the SLD, it is also referred to as a third-level domain (3LD).
“Another example of a domain name with a subdomain is tools.usps.com. It is made up of a subdomain “”tools””), a second-level domain “”usp””), and a top-level domain (“.com). “Another example of a domain name with a subdomain is tools.usps.com. It is made up of a subdomain (“tools.”), a second-level domain (“usps”), and a top-level domain (“.com).
You may already be familiar with this domain name. In March 2022, it was the most popular government domain, getting over 244 million visits in 30 days, according to Statista.