Claiming a Domain name for your site is the first step in website development. Domain names serve as the address of your blog or site on the world wide web. Some popular domains are wordpress.org, google.com and Amazon.in. Currently, there are approximately 150 million registered domains on the internet. In simpler words, this is the number of sites on the internet. Since any site in the world cannot run on the internet without a domain, here is everything you need to know about what domain names are and how they work.
What is a Domain?
A Domain Name is the ‘human name’ for an IP address. Imagine, for logging in to WordPress you would have to enter a number code like ‘126.96.36.199’ every time. The problem grows even more as the number of sites increase. Domain names were invented to combat this. The Domain Name System (DNS), a decentralized naming system for computers was also introduced. It translates the easy to remember domain names to machine recognizable IP addresses, every time you enter a website name.
Be thankful to Paul V. Mockapetris and Jon Postel, for you do not have to enter a long string of numbers for visiting a website now. Instead, you have got cool domains.
How Do Domain Names work?
As soon as you enter a URL and hit enter in your browser, it makes a hidden IP address request for that site from a DNS server simultaneously. These DNS servers are spread all across the world. For every standard network configuration, there are at least two DNS servers. One is the primary server. The other is the backup DNS server. It is used if the primary server fails.
DNS searches are an antecedent to any website visits. It is a two-way process. Once a request is made, these servers search and forward this request for name servers attached to that site’s domain. Domain Names may look simple, but a lot happens in the background.
Ever encountered a DNS error stating, ‘example.com’s server DNS address could not be found,’ while browsing the internet?
What this exactly means is that the DNS server is unable to connect with the requested IP Address.
What is a DNS Server?
A Domain Name System or DNS Server is a computer managed by hosting companies like HostGator, GoDaddy and Bluehost. This computer stores many websites. Whenever a request is made to reach your site, your hosting company forwards this request to the computer where your site is stored. After this, it fetches your site and sends it to the user who requested it. All the information and data on the internet is stored on these web servers. In technical terms, this is known as hosting.
Hence, domain name and hosting are the first things needed to run your site on the internet. Most companies that provide hosting also provide domain names. Thus, we would recommend you to get your domain name and hosting from the same company. This helps as you do not have to manage separate accounts for both.
Although, if you want you can choose different companies for both. If you do this, then you will have to edit the domain name settings. After editing these, enter the Name Server information provided by your hosting company. This information defines the path to send user requests for your domain name.
Want to Register the perfect Domain Name for Your Website?
Registering the right domain name for your site is the first step towards success. If your domain name is not appropriate, it may cost you a lot to switch later. This is why it is essential to register the right domain name. Domain names are available with several different extensions like .org, .com and .net. These can be registered easily from domain name registrars like Namecheap, GoDaddy and Bluehost. These domain names generally cost around $10-15 a year. Here are are a few tips to register the perfect Domain Name for your website.
- Stick with .com as it is the easiest to remember and works best for business websites.
- Use keywords in your domain name to tell the search engines your website.
- Keep your domain name short and under 15 characters.
- Use words that are easy to pronounce and spell.
- Be unique but don’t use words that people can’t even relate with.
- Avoid hyphens or any special characters.
If you follow these simple guidelines while registering a domain, you will obtain the perfect domain for your business site. Although, this is just the first step. After domain registration, the next thing you need is a hosting service for your site on the internet. As already said earlier, we would recommend you to opt for WordPress hosting companies that also offer domain name registration services. This way you can manage both these services from a single place under the same account.
We hope this article helped you learn everything you need to know about a domain name and how they work. May you get the perfect domain name for your blog or business!