How to Purchse a URL aka Domain Name

Each website has a Uniform Resource Locator (URL) aka domain name, assigned to it. This character string is also called the Domain Name. The domain name is easier for people to remember than a bunch of numbers. Consumers have many options to purchase URL domain name.

"Brown House by the Oak Tree"

In a simple world people give directions using landmarks. "I live in the brown house by the oak tree." Scientists have assigned a series of longitude and latitude coordinates to each position on earth. Global Positioning Systems (GPS) can read these numbers to help you get to your destination. As small communities grow, they assign addresses to houses in the neighborhood. This helps with delivery from people who are not from the area. "The Smith family home" is the domain of the house inhabited by the Smiths. The World Wide Web spans the globe and uses an Internet Protocol (IP) address to help computers find websites. This IP address is a numeric string, which the binary computer system understands. Humans have enough numbers to remember without trying to remember the IP address of their favorite online stores. The domain name was created as a listing that was easier for humans to remember.

"Finding Your Website Using the Domain Name"

The Internet is an electronic network of websites that can be identified by their domain names. When a Web surfer types in keywords at his computer, the search engines look for relevant web sites. These matches are turned into a list of Search Results to give the customer options for finding something online. With a domain name, the consumer can type in the domain name directly and go straight to the website. This saves a lot of time.

"How Many Domain Names Are There?"

According to "Whois," there were 140,697,516 domain names covering the .com, .net, .org, .info, .biz and .us suffixes in June 2012. These are the most popular website suffixes. Under the .com suffix, 82,549 new sites were added, 104,126 were transferred and 105,218 were deleted on June 11, 2012. There are a total of 3,433,774,470 total IP addresses in 251 countries as of June 1, 2012. The United States accounted for nearly 50% of these IP addresses: 1,543,946,031. The world's population is 7,000,000,000. These statistics show that there was one IP address for every two people on the planet.

"Where Do I Purchase URL Domain Name?"

Consumers can purchase URL domain name from a Domain Registrar. There were more than 800 domain name registrars worldwide as of June 2012. The largest American domain registrar has 32,696,611 total domains. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) manages domain registrars. People can also purchase domain names from middle men, called registration agents.

"Importance of a Domain Name"

The WPP Group Millward Brown reported that the most valuable brand in the world for 2011 was Apple - worth $153 billion. Brands create a human link. People are more likely to remember images, familiar names or feelings associated with a product or service. Successful businesses create brand names that "roll off the tongue." As people type keywords into their search engines, they use words that are the easiest to remember. The most popular websites have distinctive, unique or interesting domain names. The keywords must be associated with the product or service of the business to get a match.

"Selecting a Domain Name"

There are many strategies for purchasing URLs. Most companies will purchase a primary domain name with its exact name or singular or plural variations. The most successful websites have distinctive domain names. Short and sweet domain names, which avoid punctuation, are the best. Multiple websites can be purchased. Some organizations purchase domain names that are mistyped or misspelled to redirect traffic to the primary business site. People have short attention spans and can't remember long URL names. Another strategy targets keyword-rich domain names, like "Good.com" to attract large levels of traffic. You could purchase similar terms, synonyms and plural versions, like "Verygood.com", "Beneficial.com" and "Goods.com". Others purchase a string of keywords, like "Ilikeicecream.com".

"What are the differences in suffixes like .com, .net and .info?"

The creators of the Internet have assigned different suffixes to different business categories. The most common suffix is .com, which can be used for any purpose. This general suffix receives the most searching hits. Other suffixes target governments, markets or countries. Suffixes have different values, like a gold, silver or bronze medal. If you want more traffic, then you will select a more popular suffix. Customers can view the latest prices for the sale of popular domain names to determine the going market rate.

"Is my preferred domain name taken?"

Remember that the Web surfer has a different mentality than the brick-and-mortar consumer. Online consumers demand "immediate gratification." They expect 24/7/365 service and every site is only a click away. It makes sense to make a list of ten preferred domain names before you check with a domain registrar to see if they have been taken. It is very easy to check the Internet to see if your domain name is taken. Go to a domain name search site by typing "domain name." When you get to the site, type in your preferred domain name to see if it is taken.

"Rights to a Domain Name"

Trademark law gives a company using certain copyrighted brands, products or services the advantage in purchasing domain names that are associated with its business. The registration company might have a dispute resolution service. You can also bring the matter to a court room if you want.

"Purchasing a URL"

The regular person refers to "purchasing a URL" or "buying a URL." The online experts refer to the process as "registering a domain name." It is the same concept. The online domain name is assigned to the purchaser for a period of time, usually one to two years. You might hear the term, Top-Level Domain (TLD) referenced. The TLD refers to the domain name right before the .com or other suffix. Some lower-level domains are subleased to small entrepreneurs. The Web surfer is directed to the TLD and then sent to a rented space within the TLD.

"Things to Look For"

The value of the domain name is based on the popularity of the keywords used, suffix and status. There are new registration, renewal and transfer prices. Look for hidden fees. Some registration agents do web hosting too. Be careful that you understand what they offering. There might be separate contracts for the domain registrar and registration agent. Most purchases of a URL will be based on a first-come, first-served basis. Some resellers are like ticket scalpers, they will purchase high-value domains and sell them at auctions.

 

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Domain Registries

Listed below are links to the Governing Bodies (Registry) for different TLDs. Note, you can not actually register a domain (i.e. Buy a URL) with any of these sites.

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