Nowadays for any professional or company it is very necessary to have a presence on the Internet through a website. If you need to create a website you should know that two things are necessary, hosting and domain. But do you really know what they mean?
The hosting or web hosting is a space where all the files and the information that we will show to our visitors are kept. This service is contracted to a Web Server.
An internet domain is a unique name that is used to identify a web page on the internet. It can be the name of a company, an organization or a person.
If you are interested in making a website you need to know everything about the domain name. But if it sounds like Chinese, don’t worry because I will help you to solve all your doubts. I invite you to keep reading because I assure you that with the information I am going to provide you with below you will become a real expert in internet domains. Are you ready?
What is a domain?
An internet domain is a text that identifies each web page so that it can be visited by a user. To make it clear, a web domain is similar to the name of a person that appears in the National Identity Card (D.N.I.), each of us has a unique name that identifies us. Have you understood? But although it seems to be simple, it has its nuances. Let’s get to the heart of the matter!
Domain name and URL
First of all, many people confuse a URL with the domain name and it is not the same thing. It is true that the domain name appears in a URL but they are different things. While a domain is the text that appears after “www” in a web address (or directly after http://), a URL is a complete web address that leads to a specific web page. I’m going to give you a few examples to make it absolutely clear.
Web domain examples:
https://www.google.com https://www.bing.com Therefore, each URL contains among other elements a domain name.
Domain and IP address
Secondly, the IP address comes into the picture. What does it have to do with an Internet domain? Here I will explain it to you so that you understand it well. Any computer or device connected to the Internet is assigned an IP address that identifies it. It is a fairly long number that helps to locate the computer assigned to it on the servers.
It is a number of the type 18.104.22.168. This number is put in the URL but as it is very difficult to remember it is usually replaced by a domain name which is much easier to recognize. Therefore a URL can contain both a domain and an IP address (i.e. we could write it with words or with numbers). But it should be noted that when typing in a browser a URL with a domain name there must be a transformation process in which the web domain is transformed into an IP address. This is because this is how any device connected to the Internet is actually identified, i.e. how are these names translated into a number? The process of transforming a domain into an IP address is possible thanks to the DNS (Domain Name System). This system is used by web browsers to locate the site you are looking for by the domain name. The domain name can remain unchanged even if you move the website to another computer or server because you can tell the DNS to link the domain name you have to the new IP Address.
Types of Internet domains
First of all I am going to explain what a subdomain is because I am sure you have heard it many times.
What is a subdomain?
It is a subfolder located in a website and is linked to it. It serves to classify the content that your website has. They are placed instead of the “www” of a website. (Actually the www. works as a subdomain, but it is a custom, especially from the beginning of the Internet, that the web pages were identified with these www, although it is not necessary to do so) The most used subdomains are:
chat. for a web site that is of conversation between its users.
forum. to ask questions and give answers
blog. to publish content related to the website
photos. to collect images related to the website
videos. website that collects only videos
store. website to sell
admin. from where you can manage your website
news. only collects the news of the day
Types of domain names
Domain names are organized in different levels. Each level is associated with a different extension. There are three levels :
Generic or top-level domains (gTLD):
These are the most commonly used. They are not related to any geographic space. They are composed of at least three characters and are managed by an international organization such as ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers). To this level belong the levels .com, .net, .info, .org, edu, among others.
Country code or second level domains (ccTLD):
This type of domain is associated with a country or a region. They are composed of only two characters that identify the country or region to which they refer. At this level are web domains such as .es, .fr, .uk, .de, .mx. In Spain they are managed by the red.es organization.
Third level domains:
These internet domains are a mixture of top level and second level domains. Some examples are: com.es, org.es, gob.es, com.uk. Generic names are the first domain names that existed on the internet but due to the growth in the number of web pages the needs have increased and these domains have become too small. In mid 2012 ICANN published a list of 1,930 new top level domain names that had been applied for a few years earlier. These new web domains are slowly being introduced and some have even been rejected. Some of them refer to professions such as .lawyer or .doctor as well as companies and brands such as .microsoft, .canon. Some of them also refer to geographical areas such as .barcelona.
How to create a web domain?
To create a web domain you will have to register it. There are companies or organizations that are dedicated to be domain registrars. It should be noted that these companies to be registrars have to be accredited by two international organizations that are responsible for managing all internet domains among other things. These organizations are:
To register a domain name you must follow these steps:
Choose a domain name:
First of all you must think and choose a domain name and its extension. Above all, logically choose a name that identifies you as a person, as a professional or as a company.
To make it easier for people to find you on the Internet quickly when they search for you, you must follow a series of guidelines:
Your domain name should be as short as possible.
Do not include numbers, symbols or strange characters
If you want a top level domain always search for it with the extension .com because it is the most known one
If your domain contains a keyword, it is better to favor the seo positioning.
Select an authorized registrar:
If you want to buy a domain with security and good price, you can visit my toolbox where I recommend the companies that in my opinion are best to buy a domain.
Another way to choose a registrar is to access the page domains.es and in its section registrar agents appears a list of the mentioned agents. If you click on the name of each registrar you will see their contact details including their website.
My advice when choosing a registrar or hosting provider is that you should not only look for the cheapest price but the one that is suitable for your needs. That is to say you must take into account other things like for example if you want to buy only the web domain without hosting or you prefer to buy both things in one place,… There are websites where very useful comparisons of hosting and domain offers made by different registrars are made.
Check free domains:
To verify that the domain name you have chosen is a free domain you can do it in three ways:
Entering directly on the web site of an authorized registrar.
Accessing an authorized registrar from the listing provided by ICANN
or from the web page through its search engine.
In the search engine on the above mentioned pages type the name of the chosen domain and by clicking on “search” you will be able to check if the domain name is free or not for different extensions. If you want to check who owns a domain that is not available is very simple, you just have to access Whois which is a public directory that contains the technical and contact details of a domain.
Register the chosen web domain:
Once you have verified that the domain is free proceed to register it as follows:
Choose the time for which you want to register it. Normally it is done by years. The minimum time for which you can register your internet domain is one year. The more years you want to register it, the more discount you will get on the purchase price.
Indicate your contact and personal information as the owner of the web domain.
Make the payment to formalize the domain registration.
And finally you must wait a few hours so that any Internet browser can transform your domain into an IP address.
It is not so complicated to register a domain, is it?
Problems with registered domains
There can be situations in which the expiration of the time contracted for the registration of a domain is not renewed and it becomes an expired domain.
What happens to these expired domains?
Well, here comes the problem!
There are many people or entities that are aware of the expiration dates of registered domains because they want to keep them. This is because they want to take advantage of the SEO that those domains already have because if they take a new domain they have to start from scratch. The expiration date of a domain can be seen in Whois.
Others want to resell these expired domains. That is to say, they buy them and sell them at a higher price than the purchase price to people or entities that have the need to take advantage of the web positioning they already have.
Therefore, keep a close eye on the expiration date of your domain if you do not want to be taken over in a flash.
In short, registering a domain name is an unavoidable step to create a website. With this guide I have provided you with, you have learned what a domain name is, its types, how to choose and register it, and you have become a domain expert! ?