We’ve taken the complexity out of registering your Domain for the first time
Take a look at this step-by-step guide, and in just a few minutes you will be the proud owner of a domain name.
Is your business name available online?
The easiest way to find out if your domain name is available is to go to a domain registration company and search your business name. If it is available, register it in as many configurations as possible. E.g. yourname.com, yourname.com.au, yourname.co.uk
Of course, you can simply register the name in just one configuration. However, you run the risk of someone else registering your business name in our country or oversees.
What happens if your business name is taken?
I can imagine this would be pretty annoying, but never fear, you can simply register an extension of your name instead, and back order* the name that you really want. For example, my graphic & web design company is Belle Creative, so I have registered www.bellecreative.com.au. However, if this wasn’t available I would have considered www.BelleCreativeAustralia.com.au or www.BellCreativeDesign.com.au or shortened it to www.BCreative.com.au or www.BelleC.com.au. Make sure you choose something that is easy to explain to someone else and isn’t too long.
So jump online, go to www.godaddy.com.au and see if your domain name is available.
Is there a cost?
Yes, there is a cost to register your domain. Prices can vary depending on whether you register a .com address compared to say a .com.au address.
Ok, so now you have registered your domain…
Is this where my site lives?
Hmmmm… Not necessarily, once you register your domain, you will also need to purchase a hosting plan. The hosting plan usually includes server space to host your website + allows you to have multiple email addresses.
You will then need to point your domain to your hosting platform by changing the Name Servers. This basically means that if you registered your domain name with GoDaddy, and your site is hosted with say Business Catalyst, then they will need to talk to each other. (By having your name serves pointing
to your host when someone types in www.yourdomainname.com your website will appear on their screen. If you missed this step then you will often get a “site coming soon” page which is provided by the company that you registered your domain with).
Now, when someone types your web address in the browser, your domain name will point to your host and will allow your website to display.
Tip: Too hard basket? No worries, ask your web designer to do it for you. Your web designer should be able to register your URL, design your site, arrange hosting for you and assist you in setting up your emails.
Tip: When you register your domain there could be some confusing add-ons such as “privacy” or “website build and hosting” that the company will try to sell you. Stick to the domain registration only unless you absolutely know that you need an add-on, you can always upgrade your options later.
Tip: Hosting – Speak with your web designer before you purchase hosting, your web designer may have access to better plans for you based on the platform they use. So just register the domain for now.
* Back ordering means that if your domain becomes available, if you have placed it on back order, your domain registry will alert you that it is now available for purchase. In my experience the domain I have back ordered have rarely become available again for purchase. I recommend you registering an alternative or even searching to see if the domain you want is for sale. If you have the budget to buy it, go for it!
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