In order to have a website, you need a domain name. Think of it as your ‘address’ on your web. Without getting terribly complicated, your domain name is what tells the Internet which web server to go and look for files on… Those files? They comprise the pages of your site!.
Your domain name (example: curately.org, scriptly.org, jasondrohn.com, timeslots.org) can be anything you like.
- Your first and last name (mine: http://jasondrohn.com)
- A particularly witty word (http://uncrate.com)
- An awesome phrase (http://thinktraffic.net)
- Your company name
- Something niche specific (http://woodworkersuniverse.com)
The purpose of the domain name that we’re setting up here isn’t to help ranking in Google, but aid in branding :0)
(NOTE: Google used to put a lot of weight on the domain name itself – not so much anymore!)
Choosing A Domain Name
Oftentimes, choosing a domain name can take some time, and I personally like to know what’s available without having to refresh pages for every check.
I use a tool called PCnames.com to help with that. Just type a few words in the box and it’ll show you what’s available.
NOTE: Don’t register your domain name through PCnames. Just see if it’s available. Registering domain names is a lot easier when you’re ready to set up web hosting…
We’ll get to that In a few slides.
What Your Domain Name Says
Your domain name is the first thing people see before they visit your site. It should speak to them or help anchor your brand in their mind.
One of the best strategies for picking a domain name is to consider what it will be used for…
- Will you be selling a product or a service?
- Are you using it to generate leads?
- Are you posting tutorials and content?
- Is it just a diary or a blog?
When you start to consider what a domain name will be used for, you’ll start getting an idea of what it should be called.
A great way to do it, especially when you’re selling something or doing some sort of training is to consider ‘future pacing.’
Where will your reader be AFTER they read your content or buy your stuff?
Will they be getting more traffic? Selling more product? Building an audience? Launching a new app?
In that way, your domain name is a small marketing piece that pre-frames your audience for your offers!
There are lots of ways to do it – this technique has done well for me…
Now that you have an idea of what your domain name will be (PCnames isn’t always right), it’s time to get it set up with hosting.
The easiest way to do this if it’s your first time is to set it up in one shot… That ensures that your domain name is pointing to your web host so you can get started quickly.
For that, we’ll use a web hosting provider like Hostgator…
In the next article, we’ll go through setting up the whole thing in Hostgator!