A domain name is the term used to refer to the address of a website. People enter it in the address bar of their web browser to access the site. Therefore, your domain name has to be not just easy to remember, but also suggestive of what your website stands for.
Why You Require One
If you only intend to establish a web presence, having a domain name is not a must. Remember, a website is not the only way to have an online presence; you can also do it through a blog or page. Various services give space for you to both set up a webpage or blog and assign a name to it, but that will not be a domain name you own but a subdomain of that service provider’s website. In the event the host website closes down, then the identity of your page will go away with it, plus you will not be able to use it in that form for creating a self-hosted website somewhere else.
To set up a fully functional site with a permanent identity, you should have a domain name which stays to be yours under any situation, irrespective of the web hosting service you go for. Purchasing and registering a domain name reserves it for your exclusive use, provided that its registration charges are paid for a year to many years. To hold onto the rights to that domain name, you will have to keep renewing it. In the event a domain name registration expires and it is not renewed, then it can be available to anyone else who is seeking one for their business.
Checking the Availability of Domain Name
It is not possible to register a domain name taken by another party, but determining whether one is available like how you would like it to be is rather easy. Doing a simple search on Google is the easiest way to check its availability. Enter the domain name you need, including the TDL extensions or top-level domain. This can reveal if it is in use, plus the search may give you some suggested alternatives to that used domain name.
A more reliable and thorough way to confirm its availability is to enter your preferred name on a search tool. Before registering it, you need to use a program with the capability to scan every unavailable domain name. Such tools are available from domain registrars, in addition to web hosts whose web hosting plan include domain registration.
Buying an Existing Name
Sometimes, the domain name you wish to use may be taken by someone else, but you can acquire it. There are various reasons why existing domain names are made available for purchase. Some domain names may have been bought as original ones for undeveloped or abandoned websites, but other names become available due to cybersquatting. If you purchase one from marketplaces where domain names are traded, you will still need to register yours through a web host like HostSailor or registrar, and renew it when required to keep your ownership.