Domain Names 101
We’re getting down to the basics of domain names because, well, they matter.
1. So what is a domain name?
A domain name is simply the address you type into your browser of choice to see a specific website.
For example, the domain name for google is www.google.com and Falco’s domain name is falcodesign.com
Pretty straight forward, right?
A domain name is unique to your website only and cannot be shared. (Like a fingerprint)
2. Are websites and domains separate entities?
A domain name is like your phone number and a website is your phone. Yes, they are connected, but, they are separate items. You can change your website anytime you want and still keep your existing domain name or you can move your domain to a different provider while still using your existing website.
For example, let’s say I want to totally rebuild falcodesign.com. I can create a brand new website, disconnect my domain name from my old website and then reconnect to my new website. So, falcodesign.com will remain the same, but, my actual site will look different.
The key thing to remember here is that your domain name is NOT permanently stuck to any specific website.
3. Free vs Paid
Various website builders, like WordPress, provide free domain names. They will assign a “sub-domain” that will look like this : falcodesign.wordpress.com
If you are trying to build a long term business, a free sub-domain is not the way to go.
• You don’t own it – sure, it is free but, it is not yours. If you ever decide to switch service providers, your domain is not portable
• Sub-domains are just extensions to the service provider’s own domain – at the end of your domain name, you will see the name of the service provider which makes it difficult to establish your own unique brand identity.
4. Where should I purchase my domain name?
There are tons of domain name registrars out there. Personally, I prefer GoDaddy or Media Temple. When you buy a domain name, you will pay an annual fee so that your domain remains registers under your name. When your registration period ends, you must renew or you will lose the domain name.
Set a reminder!
5. How do I get started?
My best advice to you is to reach out to a professional website designer and developer. They will help you choose the best hosting provider for your business. At Falco Design, we are happy to share our expertise with you and will walk you through the entire process of getting your new website up and running!