how do you create a domain

How Do You Create A Domain?

If you want to have a website, then the first thing you’ll need to do is create a domain name. Without a domain name, there won’t be a way for users to actually access your website.

Beyond actually choosing a domain name, you’ll need to pick a domain name that is short, memorable, and represents your business.

If that sounds like a lot, don’t worry.

Below you’ll learn why choosing the right domain name is important, common domain name selection pitfalls, and finally, you’ll learn how to go through the process of actually creating a domain.

register domain name

The Importance of Choosing the Right Domain Name

Your domain name is going to be the name of your brand. It’s something you need to spend time thinking about and researching.

For example, without proper research, you could end up with a domain name that is very closely related to one of your competitors. Or, you could end up with a domain name that doesn’t stick in the minds of your visitors.

A lot of people rush the domain selection process, and once their site takes off they wish they spent more time up front. Having to go through a website re-brand isn’t the end of the world. But, it can be avoided by choosing the right domain name from the start.

 

Domain Name Do’s and Don’ts

When you’re creating your own domain name there are a few best practices you’ll want to keep in mind, as well as some pitfalls you’ll want to avoid.

Learn what they are below.

 

1. DO Be Descriptive

Although a lot of large brands have domain and company names that don’t really reflect what they’re doing, you can give yourself a leg up by choosing a descriptive domain.

Some domains are merely descriptors of the company values. While others help to illustrate exactly what their company does.

You want your domain to give your visitors a subtle hint of what your website or brand is about. It’ll either improve or detract from your brand, so choose wisely.

 

2. DO Create Something Short and Memorable

Long domains aren’t only a chore to type in, but they can be hard to remember and come across as spammy. When in doubt, go with a shorter domain.

This doesn’t mean you should cut letters out of the words, but instead to use fewer words or come up with a combination of phrases that’s much easier to remember.

 

3. DO Research Your Domain

Spend time looking into your domain’s past. Someone else could have purchased it a long time ago to build a site in a separate space, or it could have a shady past that you’re unaware of.

Keep an eye out for competitors that have similar domains, or other businesses that have a similar company name. You’ll want something that’s completely unique and free of any existing negative association.

 

4. DON’T Use Dashes, Abbreviations, or Numbers

Think about telling someone your domain name. Which sounds better?

“My domain is “dogs dash life dot com” or

“My domain is “dogs life dot com”

By adding dashes, abbreviations, and numbers to your domain you make it that much more difficult for people to both pass on, and remember your domain name.

 

5. DON’T Choose the Wrong Extension

The wrong domain name extension can reflect poorly on your website. For instance, going with something like .biz or .info, simply because it’s the only thing available, will reflect poorly on your website and make it come across as less credible.

Whenever possible, choose a .com, a .net, or a .org.

 

Creating a Domain Name

By now you’re well equipped to create a domain name that’s a perfect reflection of your business.

With a few different domain options in mind, it’s time to get creating.

The first step is deciding whether or not you want to purchase hosting at the same time. If you don’t already have a hosting account, then it’ll be much easier for you to purchase both at the same time.

First, navigate to HostGator Domains, and enter your domain of choice. Then, select your TLD and purchase your domain.

search available domain names

If you’d like to purchase hosting at the same time, then head over to this page and select your hosting package. On the next screen you’ll have the ability to add a domain to your purchase too. And that’s it!

 

How to Set Up Your Domain Name

Once you’ve purchased your domain name and hosting you’ll need to sync the two together in order to have a functioning website.

The first step is to point your domain name towards your web server. If you registered your domain through HostGator, then this step is already taken care of for you.

For those who registered their domain at a different registrar, read on.

  • Navigate to your domain management portal, and look for a section called DNS records.
  • Here you’ll find an area titled nameservers, click on it and choose custom nameservers.
  • Now, enter the nameservers that were given to you by your hosting provider, and click save.
  • Your domain name will now be pointing towards your host, where all of your website’s files are stored.

The final step is going to be adding your domain to the backend of your hosting account.

If you’re using HostGator hosting, then navigate to your cPanel and click on the icon titled Addon Domains.

Manage domains in cPanel

On the next screen you’ll be able to add your domain to the backend of your hosting account, so you can start managing and building your site.

Congrats! You’re now the proud owner of a new domain name that’s ready to be transformed into a beautiful website.

Hopefully, you have a better understanding of how the domain name creation process works and the importance of choosing the right domain name.

Kevin Wood writes about technology and human potential. You can find him at his virtual homes Wooden Writing and Counter Culturist.