Time to plant your flag on the internet.
What is a domain name?
A domain name is the unique address for a website. Visitors use it to access your website on the internet. If you still don’t get it…I have no idea how you made it to this page. Look at the address bar on your browser, digitalprojects.io is is my domain name. You have the name ‘digitalprojects’ and the extension ‘io’. There is many extensions out there like, .com, .com.au, .net, .org etc.
The Registrar is a service authorised to reserve a domain name for you. When domain names first sell, they usually sell for cheap, but once someone buys one, they have the rights to it until they decide to sell it, or it expires. People buy expired domain names in hopes of selling back to you, often for much, much more money, Therefore, it’s a good idea to reserve a domain name you are interested in and renew it every year, even if you didn’t intend on doing anything big with it.
How Domains can be registered at any accredited registrar In this guide, I will use the registrar Epik because it is one of the more high quality and easy to use. The guides on this site will use Epik.
Domain names do not hold your data or your website, instead, you add “DNS settings” that direct people connecting to your domain to your IP address. The purpose of a domain name is so websites can be human readable – visitors do not need to remember your IP address to find your website.
Let’s go to Epik’s site and you can search for domain names.
You can look for whatever domain name you want. Domains that are already bought and owned by someone else might have the option to “Backorder,” but it’s always best to get one that is unowned.
If you want to host a website with your new domain name, you will require a server.
One worry people have when reserving a domain is that a domain registrar requires that you Submit a home address! In fact, it used to be even worse: You could easily look up the information of the owner of a website by looking them up in the public WHOIS database!
Firstly, you can easily register a domain under some other address you don’t actually have access to. The internet police does not go looking to see who lives where. But more importantly, every good registrar like Epik now includes some kind of WHOIS guard, which is a service that logs a dummy address including a dummy email in the WHOIS database instead of your proper information. By the way, if the registrar you’re looking at requires an extra fee for this service, switch to another. All good registrars should do this for free nowadays.
Keep in mind that the registrar can pull rank and take back your domain name causing your website to crash. Choose your registrar carefully based on your needs.