What is a Domain Name?
A domain name is an internet address, like fusionforward.com. Every domain has a corresponding IP address. For example, the IP address for fusionforward.com is 66.147.420.170.
When visitors enter your domain name into a web browser, the browser uses your domain name to find the associated IP address and, therefore, the website. People use domain names instead of IP addresses because it’s easier to remember a name rather than a series of numbers.
Using the White House’s domain (whitehouse.gov) for an example, the street address, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, is the exact location where the domain account is registered (the IP address). You may not know the exact street address, but when you visit Washington, D.C., you can tell the cab driver that you want to visit the White House and still get there. This is how a domain name is used: It’s an easy way to reach the exact location of a website without having to remember its IP address.
Your domain name and its associated IP address are stored in a common database along with every other domain and associated IP address that are accessible via the Internet.
Every domain name has a suffix that indicates which top level domain it belongs to. There are only a limited number of such domains. Here are some you may recognize:
- .gov – Government agencies
- .edu – Educational institutions
- .org – Organizations (nonprofit)
- .mil – Military
- .com – Commercial business
- .net – Network organizations
To have your own domain name, you need to register your domain with a domain registrar; an organization or commercial entity that manages the reservation of internet domain names. This is something Fusion Forward can do for you!
Here are a few guidelines to consider when choosing your domain name:
- Ask your friends, family, associates, and clients what words and phrases they would be most likely to use in searching for products or services like yours.
- Investigate which keywords your competitors use. See which keywords are used frequently on their pages.
- Think geographically – include keywords that describe the area you serve.
- Make it easy to type – If a domain name requires considerable attention to type correctly, you’ve lost a good portion of your branding and marketing value.
- Be Memorable
- Think not only of nouns, but also of adjectives and verbs that describe how your product or service is used.
- Think of words both directly and indirectly related to your product or service.
- Avoid numbers or hyphens
- Consider your offline media- will your domain name fit on your business card?
- Consider the Cost to register and renew – most domain registrations and renewals cost between $10-15 per year. Highly sought after domains, such as those with common words, tend to go for much more. Toys.com is one of the most expensive domains. It was purchased by ToysRUS in 2009 for $5.1 million. Here is a list of some of the other most expensive domains of all time. You will see that most of these are common words and several companies would love to have them as their domain name – so they are worth quite a bit.