If you are planning to build a website, then the first two things you need to purchase, a domain and web hosting.
A domain name is your website’s address on the internet and web hosting where all your website’s files are stored.
There are over hundreds of domain extensions available. The cost of a domain name depends on extensions which are called top-level domain. These domain extensions are used for different purposes. For example, a .com domain is mostly used by commercial businesses, the .org domain is used for no-profit organizations.
Before registering a domain, you need to know the difference between domain extensions, for example, .net vs .com.
In this article, we will discuss what is a domain, how much does a domain cost and how to get a domain name.
Don’t have a website yet? Read our guide on how to start a website in a few minutes.
What’s in a Domain Name?
Each of the domain names contains two parts: the top-level domain; another one is the second-level domain.
As an example, in “Apple.com,” “.com” is the top-level domain, “Apple” is the second-level domain.
Let me explain:
The top-level domain: The top-level domain, also known as a domain extension, is a part that comes after the dot. The most popular domain extensions are .com, .org, .net, etc.
These domain extensions are used for different purposes, for example, .org extension is used for non-profit organizations, .edu is used by educational websites.
However, if your business is located locally, you can use country-specific extensions, such as .us for the United States, .co.uk for the United Kingdom, etc.
Second-level domain: The second-level domain is found before the dot sign. This is basically your website’s address. For example, in the domain “Apple.com”, “Apple” is the second-level domain.
Now, let’s see how to get a domain name.
How to Get a Domain Name (Step by Step Guide)
Getting a domain name is a very straightforward process. First, you need to choose a domain name that you want to use for your website. Then, purchase your domain from a domain registrar.
A .com domain costs around $10-$14 per year. And you need to pay $9 per month for web hosting. It’s expensive for beginners who are just getting started.
Fortunately, Bluehost offers a free domain registration with their hosting plans. The best thing about Bluehost is that its hosting plans are so cheap and it starts from only $2.95 per month.
Here is the step by step guide how to register a domain:
Choose a domain registrar: The first thing you need to check their domain prices. We recommend you to register your domain name with popular registrars like Bluehost, NameCheap, Domain, etc.
Search for a domain name: Most of the popular domain registrars offer a domain name availability checker tool, such as the one from Bluehost, which you can utilize to determine if a domain is available to register.
The advantage of the accessibility checker is that it will provide you suggestions for alternate domain names if yours is currently taken.
Enter your contact details: Once you select a domain, you need to enter your contact details such as your name, address, email, phone number. Each individual needs to enter their contact details in order to complete their account for the general public “WHOIS” database.
During domain registration, you can add domain privacy so that your contact details wouldn’t be visible to anyone.
Pay for your domain: Generally, a domain costs around $8-$14 for a year. It depends on the web hosting or registrar; you may be able to obtain a domain totally free by purchasing a web hosting plan from Bluehost.
Link domain and your web hosting: This step is for those who bought a domain and web hosting separately. For this, you need to link your domain with your web hosting.
Go to the domain manager, enter the CNAME details that you received from your web hosting. If you can’t find your CNAME records, you can ask your web hosting company.
If you bought a domain and hosting from the same company, you don’t need to link anything.
Install a CMS: Once purchased, you need to install a CMS like WordPress to make sure the website is working under your acquired domain. To do so, open a browser window as well as enter your domain.
Cost of a Domain Name
On average, domain name expenses are $8-$ 14, depending on several factors.
Top-level domain: Generally, high-level domains are much pricier than others. As an example, .com domains are usually much more costly than .info or.co domain names.
Most popular names: Sometimes the domain prices also depend on the most popular names. These domains are called premium domains which cost $1000-$500000.
If you find a domain that is too expensive, consider choosing another name or go with other extensions.
Domain registration time-length: Usually, signing up a domain name for one-year expenses in between $6 and $16. Registering for a longer period will lower month-to-month prices. When registering your domain, try to sign up for a couple of years for a bigger discount.
Add-ons: During domain registration, you will be asked to add add-ons such as privacy protection. And of course, you need to pay an extra fee for that.
Getting a domain that somebody owns: It is possible to get a domain that is currently owned by somebody else in a bidding process, but this will cost you a lot.
Domain discount: Sometimes domain registrars offer massive discounts on certain domains. For example, GoDaddy offers a .com domain at just 99 cents throughout a special discount, where the regular price is around $14.
What’s the difference between a domain and a website?
A domain name is basically your website address on the internet. This is what people type on their web browser to reach a website. For example, Apple.com is a domain name.
On the other hand, a website is a collection of webpages organized together in a single domain name.
There is no doubt that domain names are very important for your business’s success on the internet.
A top-level domain usually costs around $8-$20 per year, where you can save a lot of money if you buy a domain and hosting together. In this case, Bluehost offers the best price and they also offer free domain registration with their hosting package.
In this article, we have shared what is a domain, how much does a domain cost and how to get a domain name.
Did we miss any steps or do you have any recommendations? Do let us know in the comment section.