As a business owner and someone who builds websites for other businesses, I believe you should always be the one in control of your own domain name. Many business owners make the mistake of letting somebody else take care of the technicalities or registering the domain name, not realizing that they could lose their domain if anything goes wrong.

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This article provides helpful thought points to help you understand what a domain name is and why you should own your domain name.

What Is a Domain Name

A domain name is a piece of text, or label, that identifies a specific IP address. It is the text that a user types into a browser window to reach a particular website. For instance, the domain name for Monterey Premier is ‘montereypremier.com.’

There are many other options like .net, .co, .org, .tv, .info, .io, and more. However we recommend using the .com domain extension if possible as it is what most people are familiar with.

What Is DNS

When you start work on your first website, a phrase your web developer and hosting provider will use frequently is Domain Name System (DNS).

The DNS is the “Yellow Pages” of the Internet. We access information online by entering domain names like calvarychapel.com or disneyplus.com.

The DNS converts user-friendly domain names into complex numerical Internet Protocol (IP) addresses (e.g. 103.21.244.0) which are used by network routers to route traffic from source to destination. This process, sometimes referred to as a DNS lookup, is a way of accessing information on the web from a familiar and easy-to-remember name.

Your web developer will need access to your DNS in order to initially set up your email and website.

How To Get A Domain

According to WP Beginner, on average, 56500+ .com domain names were registered every day in 2020. Currently, there are over 151.8 million .com domain names already registered. 366.3 million domain names are registered in all Top Level Domains.

There are a lot of great domain names in use today. And the fact is that if you’re thinking about launching a website or blog, you should probably grab a domain name right now. It’s not like your competitors won’t think of the same thing.

I keep all my different domain names registered on a separate service like Hover.com or Google Domains which makes it easier if you ever have to move hosting companies.

How Much Does a Domain Name Cost

Prices range from $4.99 to $50.00 per year depending on the extension. The .com extension is usually around $12.99 – $15.99 per year depending on the domain registration company.

Some hosting companies offer domain name registration in addition to their hosting services such as Siteground and Bluehost.

How to Choose the Best Domain Name

As you start thinking about your website, you should consider the domains you want to use. Choosing a domain name is often done for convenience – it’s easier than trying to remember a long string of letters and numbers. But at the same time, you don’t want to make too many choices that might not work out for you later on.

Following are some general tips to keep in mind when searching for a domain name.

  • Your domain name is like any other important part of your online presence. It needs to be easy to say and spell, and it needs to be short enough, so you don’t have to type it out every time.
  • .com is best! There are so many reasons why.com is the best choice for web addresses. It is easier to remember, most users are familiar with it, and most search engines support it. You want your website to rank well on Google searches, so you want a good, easy-to-remember web address.
  • Create a keyword-rich domain name that can be easily understood and remembered. This is how you will get found online. For example, genolandscapingmonterey.com is more SEO friendly than genolandscapingbusiness.com
  • Do not use numbers or hyphens in your domain name. It makes them harder to pronounce and difficult to remember.

Should My Web Developer Take Care of Purchasing My Domain Name for Me?

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No. If you own a business, you should always control your domain name.

A big mistake many business owners make is to let somebody else take care of it or register things on their behalf. Do not make the all-to-common mistake of relying on a web designer, agency, employee, or friend to take care of the “technical side of things” because it seems too complicated.

A good developer may walk you through the steps or provide a step-by-step tutorial to walk you through the process, but it is something you should purchase and have in your name.

Why You Should Always Manage Your Own Domain Name.

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When business owners come to us seeking help, support, and eventual development of their websites, one of the most common hurdles we first encounter is getting access to the domain, usually followed closely by figuring out where a site is hosted and then getting access to it that too.

When a company has a website domain name, it’s like having a title deed to land – a way to prove ownership of a physical asset (your company’s website is just that, a valuable asset).

But suppose something happens to that person who registered the domain name, for example. In that case, they fall out or an employee leaves, the business owner can be left in a position where it’s difficult to regain control of their domain name. It’s not impossible to regain control; in some cases, they can do so – but it’s a lot of unnecessary stress that could have been easily avoided.

I’m going to run through some of the main ways to keep control of your own domain name and to help keep it secure:

Domain names can be a crucial asset for any online business, and you need to ensure that it is yours. Ownership is the key and ensures that you have complete control over using it. - Geno Quiroz Click To Tweet

Always Control Access

Domain names can be a crucial asset for any online business, and you need to ensure that it is yours. Ownership is the key and ensures that you have complete control over using it.

Keep Your Login Details Safe and Secure

It is always best to keep login details safe, as you are responsible for protecting your website and its contents. Make sure you use a secure domain registrar, a password manager, and never hand your login details over to anyone you don’t explicitly trust.

It can be complicated to recover domain names if they are moved out of an account. Some registry companies allow you to add users so that they can have their own password and limited access.

Don’t Ignore Reminders in Your Inbox

Make sure all renewal reminders are coming into to your email inbox and not your “spam” or “junk” folders. You are in control of your domain name so you will need to pay attention to any emails that come in from your domain registrar. Don’t ignore these reminders as if you don’t renew your domain name, your website and emails will stop working.

What Happens If Somebody Else Registers

If someone registers a domain name on your behalf, they will most likely list the owner as themselves or their business. However, if you are trying to regain control of a domain name that is in their name, this can make it much harder to do so. There are some steps you can take if a domain name has been taken hostage.

In Closing: What Is a Domain Name and Why You Should Own Yours (Not Your Developer)

As a business owner, you should always be the one in control of your own domain name. Many business owners make the mistake of letting somebody else take care of the technicalities, not realizing that they could lose their domain if anything goes wrong.

I hope this article provides helpful thought points to help you get started. If you have any additional suggestions or questions, please do not hesitate to leave a comment below.

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Geno is the Owner/Creative Director at Monterey Premier based in Monterey, Ca.. He has been designing websites since 1996 and enjoys all things design, traveling, hanging out with friends, encouraging other believers, and experimenting with new technologies. When not doing any of the above, you can find Geno blogging here, or writing Divi customization tutorials over on Quiroz.co.

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