Almost all companies and organizations stake their presence on the internet through a website. Before they had full possession of their site, they had to go through a domain name registration process. Your domain name is a central aspect of your e-branding choices, so you should create one that is unique and easy to remember. Customers will access your e-store frequently when they can recall its name easily. Read on and learn how to set up your domain.
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Own your Domain Name in a few steps
Your domain name is as good as your online identity. Customers will transact with you and recommend your site to others as the place to shop. So, let’s help you navigate the process of owning the ideal name.
Choose your domain name
Half of the work is complete if your store already has a name. You want to maintain brand recognition by picking a similar domain name to match your business. Choose a name that is easy to type and hard to forget. Try to include either your company name or a keyword that points at your products. For instance, if you are trading in footwear, the domain could have a word like ‘heels’ in it.
If you have to choose a name from scratch, think about what you would want your ideal domain to be. Search the web to make sure that no one else is using it and check that there are no trademark infringement concerns at www.uspto.gov, the federal agency responsible for granting U.S. patents and trademarks. While you are brainstorming about it, remember to steer away from funny spellings and characters. It doesn’t hurt to ask the opinions of your friends and family about the options you are considering. As your first sounding board, you could get useful tips about how well it goes down.
Find an accredited domain registrar
You will need a reliable domain registrar that sells domain names. Some registrars offer annual contracts, and most of them are renewable. There are also website developers who package and sell domains on the sites they are building. It will be simpler to connect your domain name to your site if you choose the website builder route. Always check who are the famous companies and confirm that they have a valid license to trade before you make your final choice. Registrar prices are usually in the same range so when a site indicates massive discounts; they may have fees and service costs that they will whip out later.
Research your ideal domain
Now that you have engaged a registrar, you can use their website to find out if the name you want is up for grabs or taken. The checker tool will list the names that are available, and that are similar to your choice. If the name you wish to buy already belongs to someone, you have several options. You can settle on another unique name. Alternatively, adjust the name slightly by using Top Level Domain (TLD) such as using .com to substitute .net. And, if you are determined about sticking with your desired name, then you can find out if it is up for sale.
Sign the contract to own the domain name
Just like in every other ‘real estate’ purchases, there will be paperwork to fill in. Once you have given your personal information to the satisfaction of the registrar, there is the domain name payment that you will need to make. If you are buying a name from someone, you will need to use a domain escrow service. A few registrars have escrow services, confirm if it is available before heading off to negotiate with the seller. Once you have both agreed to favorable terms, you must complete the deal on the escrow site and pay their fees.
Confirm the ownership of your domain
The registrar will email you, usually on the same day, after you submit the forms, to verify that you own the domain name. If the confirmation email is late in arriving, you could always ask for a status update. Finally, check that the possession of your domain name is on the official WHOIS domain ownership directory. Scrutinize that the spellings and other details are correct so that you can go about your business confidently.
Link the domain to your website
When you have now taken ownership of your name, you must connect your domain name to the store’s website. The registrar can reserve your name if the site is still under construction and complete the link when you are ready.
Renew your domain name
The domain name that you buy belongs to you until the annual contract expires. You will retain ownership only if you keep re-purchasing every year. Should the registration lapse, then the domain will be available for other buyers. Fortunately, many registrars send out email reminders and, conveniently have automatic renewal.
Cover all your bases; buy up domain names that are similar to yours
People are sometimes in a hurry and are careless with typing domain names accurately. Sometimes, customers will assume that the spelling is substituting an ‘i’ with a ‘y,’ such as ‘tie’ will turn out as ‘tye.’ You can consider purchasing domain names with errors and differences that will be easy for customers to make. Redirect them to your store’s website, and capture the potential buyers that would have gotten lost. By taking proactive measures, your e-commerce traffic will receive a boost, and you may get new visitors. You could qualify for domain registrar discounts when you bulk many names, but they are generally affordable, varying between $2 to $20.
Purchasing the right domain name is the most critical move you can take to cement your online identity. All the pages and addresses in your websites will have your domain name reflecting in them. Investing in the domain will reap the rewards for your digital presence, brand recognition, and marketing activities. Once you complete the groundwork and make the right choices, you can become the owner of a name whose power is that your customers can easily remember and type it.
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