What is a Domain Name?

If you desire to own a site, this means that you require a domain name. A domain is an easy-to-memorize name that you write in your browser's location bar when you wish to go to a specific web page.

Why Do You Require a Domain Name?

This is a topic I approach due to the fact that this past week my boss proposed the idea of establishing a site for our new project. That itself is not an issue, the issue is that he wants a site, but has not made a decision yet about what it should look like, what it should contain, etc. All that he revealed to me was the name of the web site - its domain. Thus, we now have a web address for a yet-to-be-established site and nothing more.

The Domain Name

Each web site is hosted on a physical machine. That physical machine has its own personal physical address, known also as an IP address. Accessing a web site by writing the IP address of the physical machine in your browser, though, is not the best and most suitable thing to do, so that was how and why domain names came into existence. Thus, a domain pertains to an IP on the World Wide Web. After it has been registered, that is.

Register a Domain Name

To register a cheap domain, you first have to find a domain registrar. NTC Hosting has the best solution for my current and future projects - they provide a Domain Manager package, which can be easily upgraded to a hosting plan at a later time - when my boss finally makes up his mind about what objective the website will have.

Thus, to register a domain, you need to choose a name for your web site. Then, you have to pick a TLD - this is what follows the dot. For example, in 'digg.com', '.com' is the top-level domain name (TLD). Apparently, '.com' denotes 'company', '.net' denotes 'network', '.org' denotes 'organization', and so on.

After you've selected your domain name and your future domain registration provider, you need to see whether the domain name you would like to register is free, since someone else might have grabbed it already, no matter how embarrassing this might be. Each domain registration supplier, including NTC Hosting, has a search functionality at their signup page, which confirms the availability of a certain domain name. To continue with the registration of a domain name, you have to fill out some registrant info - the personal name, the place of residence, the e-mail address and the phone number of the owner of the domain.

You've Registered a Domain Name... Now What?

I registered .com, .net, .eu and .org domain names for our venture, according to the desire of my still-uncertain-about-the-purpose-of-the-future-site boss. I tested the domain name management tool NTC Hosting is offering and found it very easy to use - everything is neatly organized and, from what I noticed in the web hosting CP demo at their site, after we upgrade to a budget hosting package, it will stay the same, just with a lot more features. This, thank heavens, will spare me quite a bit of inconvenience from having to administer my domain name and hosting account separately. So, while waiting for the boss to decide at least what the website should comprise, I was pleased to find that the domain management tool offers DNS administration and domain renewal options, and - a very handy feature (!) - a parked domain template, which I used in order to set up a "Coming Soon" page for our domains.

Country-Code Top-Level Domains

I was quite happy to find that NTC Hosting is offering multiple country-code top-level domain names, since the project the web site is meant for is multinational. Country-code top-level domain names are entrusted to local registry operators, which allow domain name registration companies to register cheap domains, usually at prices that are lower than those offered to the end customers. There are plenty of country-code domains: .co.uk for the UK, .de for Germany, .nl for the Netherlands, .us for the USA, .ca for Canada, .com.au for Australia, etc. This, I am confident, will make my boss happy because we will be able to create a local version of the web site for each country where the project will be presented.

Universal TLDs 1-year 2-years 10-years with Hosting
.COM (Commercial) $11.00 USD $22.00 USD $110.00 USD
.NET (Network) $11.00 USD $22.00 USD $110.00 USD
.BIZ (Business) $11.45 USD $22.90 USD $114.50 USD
.ORG (Non-Commercial) $11.00 USD $22.00 USD $110.00 USD
.INFO (Information) $12.00 USD $24.00 USD $120.00 USD
.PRO (Proffesional) $15.00 USD $30.00 USD $150.00 USD $15.00 USD
.CO (Company) $26.00 USD $52.00 USD $260.00 USD $26.00 USD
.TV (Television) $28.00 USD $56.00 USD $280.00 USD $28.00 USD
.NAME (Personal) $10.00 USD $20.00 USD $100.00 USD $10.00 USD
.WS (Website) $25.00 USD $50.00 USD $250.00 USD $25.00 USD
.MOBI (Mobile) $18.00 USD $36.00 USD $180.00 USD $18.00 USD
.CC (Abriviations) $22.00 USD $44.00 USD $220.00 USD $22.00 USD
.WE.BS (Website) $4.50 USD $9.00 USD $45.00 USD $4.50 USD
.NU (NEW) $32.00 USD $160.00 USD $32.00 USD
.ASIA (Asia) $15.00 USD $30.00 USD $150.00 USD $15.00 USD
Country Code TLDs 1-year 2-years 10-years Domain
with Hosting
.US (United States) $10.00 USD $20.00 USD $100.00 USD
.CA (Canada) $14.00 USD $28.00 USD $140.00 USD $14.00 USD
.COM.AU (Austraila) $29.00 USD $145.00 USD $29.00 USD
.NET.AU (Austraila) $14.50 USD $29.00 USD $145.00 USD $14.50 USD
.EU (European Union) $7.00 USD $14.00 USD $70.00 USD
.CO.UK (United Kingdom) $15.00 USD $75.00 USD $15.00 USD
.ME.UK (United Kingdom) $15.00 USD $75.00 USD $15.00 USD
.ORG.UK (United Kingdom) $15.00 USD $75.00 USD $15.00 USD
.DE (Germany) $10.00 USD $20.00 USD $100.00 USD
.AT (Austria) $25.00 USD $50.00 USD $250.00 USD $25.00 USD
.BE (Belgium) $10.00 USD $20.00 USD $100.00 USD $10.00 USD
.IT (Italy) $9.00 USD $18.00 USD $90.00 USD $9.00 USD
.ES (Spain) $11.00 USD $22.00 USD $110.00 USD $11.00 USD
.ME (Montenegro) $16.00 USD $32.00 USD $160.00 USD $16.00 USD
.NL (Netherlands) $11.00 USD $22.00 USD $110.00 USD $11.00 USD
.SE (Sweden) $15.00 USD $30.00 USD $150.00 USD $15.00 USD
.RU (Russia) $7.00 USD $14.00 USD $70.00 USD $7.00 USD
.CO.NZ (New Zealand) $18.00 USD $36.00 USD $180.00 USD $18.00 USD
.NET.NZ (New Zealand) $18.00 USD $36.00 USD $180.00 USD $18.00 USD
.TW (Taiwan) $25.00 USD $50.00 USD $250.00 USD $25.00 USD
.COM.TW (Taiwan) $25.00 USD $50.00 USD $250.00 USD $25.00 USD
.ORG.TW (Taiwan) $25.00 USD $50.00 USD $250.00 USD $25.00 USD
.IDV.TW (Taiwan) $25.00 USD $50.00 USD $250.00 USD $25.00 USD
.JP (Japan) $55.00 USD $110.00 USD $550.00 USD $55.00 USD
.IN (India) $11.00 USD $22.00 USD $110.00 USD $11.00 USD
.CO.ZA (South Africa) $14.00 USD $28.00 USD $140.00 USD $14.00 USD
.COM.MX (Mexico) $48.00 USD $48.00 USD