Selecting and Purchasing a Domain Name
Cost for a Domain Name
You can purchase a domain name from any domain registrar (we recommend Namecheap). Domain names typically cost around $10 – $30 per year (but can be as high as $35/year). Well worth the cost considering that a domain name is part of your online identity and can be one of your most recognized assets, particularly if it is for your business or organization.
Costs go down slightly per year when registering a domain name for more than 1 year at a time. Be aware that if you don’t renew your domain annually it will become available for sale to anyone on the open market, (losing ownership of your domain could also cause your website to not function), so we recommend setting up auto-renewal for your domain name.
Purchase a domain name at SiteSubscribe.com for $25 per year.
TLD Top Level Domain Extensions
The domain extension that comes after the “.” dot at the end of a domain name is known as a TLD or Top Level Domain extension.
Business TLD’s (in order of popularity and recognition)
Organization TLD’s (organizations and non-profit organizations)
.org (organizations and non-profit organizations)
Other TLD’s (in order of popularity and recognition)
.us (U.S.A. based websites)
.tel (telephony based websites)
.tv (television based websites)
.mobi (mobile phone viewing based websites)
.me (personal identity based websites)
Note: There are a few other more obscure TLD’s out there (like .au .tw .aero), but considered not within the scope of this article.
Domain Name Availability
You can purchase any available domain name that suits you, with any available TLD domain extension. However it is best to use a domain extension that is the most suitable to the purpose of your website. That ss it easier for your site visitors to remember and associate your domain name with the type of website you have (i.e. business website, organization or non-profit website, personal website, etc.).
The “.org” domain extension is best suited for organizations more than other domain types. In fact, you can even buy a “.org” domain even if you are not an organization, but it is best to use a domain extension that is more suitable to your website.
The best domain extension for a business is “.com” since this extension is the most widely known and recognized, and what people might type in to the browser address bar (the URL or Universal Resource Locator) when trying to remember your domain name.
The next best TLD for a business after “.com” might be “.net” or “.biz”, and lastly “.info”.
This typically makes a “.com” domain name more valuable than a “.biz” domain, even if the rest of the domain is the same. For example: elitecleaners.com would usually be worth more (in web traffic and market resale value) than elitecleaners.net or elitecleaners.biz since elitecleaners.com will typically receive more traffic than the other TLD’s because “.com” at the end of the domain is what most people will type into the browser address bar by habit unless they are really paying attention to your business card or the URL you told them.
This means that if you own elitecleaners.com you may receive traffic intended for elitecleaners.biz. Which also means that if you are the owner of a company names Elite Cleaners that it would be HIGHLY RECOMMENDED to purchase all available TLD’s related to ‘elitecleaners’, then simply forward all of the less important domains (secondary domains) to your primary domain (more on URL Forwarding below).
So before running out and purchasing a domain name you should do a little homework by searching the most optimal domain name that has the most valuable TLD available, and better yet has “.com” (or “.org” if you are an organization) available, along with a few other less valuable TLD’s that you can also acquire. This ensures that no one else will receive any web traffic intended for your site by mis-associating the TLD that you own, and also helps you to receive all web traffic associated with your primary business name.
Make sense? If not, give us a call 303-888-5140 to explain a little better.
You can check availability or register any type of domain name and all of the available TLD’s here.
Example of Pointing Secondary Domains to Your Primary Domain
Here are some tips when choosing a domain name:
- Keep it meaningful. It is best to select a domain name that is meaningful and most reflects the type of website you plan to have, or the type of business you have. For example: elitecleaners.com is much better than eleetnkleen.com.
- Keep it short. Try to keep the length of your domain name under around 25 characters. This reduces spelling errors and impatience when users are typing in your web address into the web browser. Two, three, or four character domains (like cbs.com or fox.tv) are considered premium, (are usually already taken and if for sale will cost a lot), and don’t make sense anyway unless you feel that it represents your website well since these short URL’s don’t have much meaning on their own.
- Don’t use numbers or special characters. Remember that you are limited to letters (a – z), numbers (0 – 9), and some special characters (‘-‘ dash, ‘.’ dot). Only use numbers and special characters if you feel it is absolutely necessary. Try not to use numbers like elitecleaners123.com.
- Buy variations on a theme (or in this case a domain). Buy all possible variations on your name that are available. Try for elitecleaners.com, and if others like elite-cleaners.com, elitecleaners.net, elite-cleaners.net, elitecleaners.biz, elitecleaners.info, and even elitecleaners.org are available, grab them too, it’s well worth the nominal annual cost to protect and capitalize on your online identity. You can easily point all of your related domains to your primary domain.
- Check availability of good variations and TLD’s before committing. If the best possible variations on your name are already taken, then seriously consider a different domain name (unless it is strictly tied to your business or organization). If elitecleaners.com is already taken, and elite-cleaners.com, elitecleaners.net, elitecleaners.biz, elitecleaners.info are the only sensible TLD’s available, you might want to select a different domain name since the entity that owns the elitecleaners.com domain (with “.com” TLD) will likely get most of the web traffic.
- Consider plurals. Be sure to grab elitecleaners.com and elitecleaner.com (without the ‘s’) to keep other entities from capturing your web traffic.
- Don’t bother with mis-spellings. Along the same lines as plurals, you can also consider minor mis-spellings (like elitecleners.com or eliteceaners.com), but this can be taken too far and tend to get expensive due to all the variations, so we don’t really recommend taking this step unless you find that your domain name is constantly mis-spelled one particular way.
- Avoid run-on characters characters. It is best to avoid run-on characters: repeating characters between words where one word ends with the same letter that the next work begins with (like joesspaghetti.com). You might think it would be okay to use joes-spaghetti.com, but then some folks will surely forget the hyphen. Using run-on characters can lead to mis-spellings and is hard to read as a domain name.
Pointing An Existing Domain Name To Your MileHighMarketing Website
Notify us when you are ready to point your existing domain name(s) to your new website at Mile High Marketing. We can take care of the domain pointing if you want us to handle it (domain pointing included free with any of our Website Plans).
The easiest way to point all of your secondary domains to your primary domain is to use URL Forwarding. URL Forwarding simply forwards from one URL to another so that if a user types in a secondary domain they are forwarded to the primary domain. URL Forwarding, once configured, takes place immediately.
When we set up domain pointing for you we’ll make sure that folks can find you by typing https://elitecleaners.com (without the ‘www’) AND https://www.elitecleaners.com (with the ‘www’).
We also usually need to update your DNS (Domain Name Server) settings for your primary domain to point to our web hosting service. Once your DNS is updated there is a 24 – 72 hour delay for the new DNS settings to propagate. This means that there will be some delay in accessing your website under the new settings.
Domain Registrars and Web Host Providers
We use a domain registrar named Namecheap, but we can work with any domain registrar such as:
- GoDaddy (We try to avoid using GoDaddy since we highly disapprove of their advertising campaigns on moral grounds, and have complained to them on a few occasions regarding this.)
- Network Solutions
- Melbourne IT, LTD. (d.b.a. Internet Names Worldwide)
- …or any domain registrar.
You can check availability or register any type of domain name and all of the available TLD’s here.
We can also work with any web host provider, but it does make it much easier to manage if we can move your site to our host provider. We currently use Hostgator as our web host provider. They are cost effective, they boast 99.9% uptime, and they have great technical support. Their SLA (Service Level Agreement) can be found here. More about our web hosting policies are available here.
Transitioning Domains or Websites
When setting up a new website we can typically set up a temporary domain for you to work with while setting up and configuring your new website (something like https://yoursite.milehighmarketinggroup.com). Once you are ready to go public with your website and ‘turn it on’ we can map your existing domain (if you have one) to the new website to make it ‘live’.
So your options for domain names are:
Purchase a new domain and point it to our servers (with our help).
Use a temporary domain that we provide for you for as long as you want.
Temporary domains look like https://yourdomain.milehighmarketinggroup.com, and can be updated/changed at any time.
Use your existing domain by pointing it to our servers (with our help).
It’s important to note that if you already own a domain name you can generally leave your domain with your current domain registrar and still point it to our web servers. This is usually the best option. We can help you to point your domain name to your new website (change the DNS).
If you need to actually transfer your domain for some reason to a new registrar we recommend Namecheap since they offer free domain transfers and have a low cost for purchasing domains.
If any changes are made to your DNS there is a 24 – 72 hour delay for the new DNS settings to propagate throughout the internet. This means that there will be some delay in accessing your website under the new settings.
In the case where you also have an existing website under an existing web host you may also need to move your website to our servers.
In most cases we can just build you a new website (with the benefit of the WordPress platform) and still incorporate the parts of your existing website that you like into your new website.
Important: If you are transferring an existing website from an existing host provider to our hosting service (or transferring rather than just pointing an existing domain) that has any associated existing email accounts you will need to back up any email that you have set up with your current provider including all of your email accounts (this does not apply if it is a new domain with no existing email).
Before transferring an existing domain name with existing email accounts we recommend first setting up a POP3 account with Gmail so that you can download all of your existing email onto Gmail before moving your email service. Contact us if you need help with setting up your email.
If you have an old website or any website files or artwork files that you are transferring over to us you should also make a backup copy before sending us any files.
Before sending us any files via email be sure to contact us so we can send you a link to where you can upload your files of any size securely to our online storage. Once you contact us letting us know you have some files for us we’ll send you an email with a link, username, and a password where you can log in and upload your files (this is especially useful for large files that are hard to send via email).
We’re Here To Help
Dealing with domains, domain pointing, domain mapping, URL forwarding, DNS, email, web hosting and the like can all seem rather complicated, so fortunately for you we are here to help!
Contact us to help you with setting up your domain, website, web hosting, or email services.
Send Us Your Thoughts/Comments/Feedback
There is certainly a lot more that can be explained here, and probably better if we really put some more thought into it. So we would appreciate your feedback as to how we can improve on this article.
Simply post a comment at the very bottom of this page if you want your feedback to become public on our website (your comment will be held for moderation before being published), or for more private feedback fill out the web form here and send it to us.