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Getting Online - First pick a name

Page 2 of 6: First pick a name

A domain name is the ‘address’ that customers type into the browser to go directly to your site. It needs to be distinct and memorable, and as short as possible. If you already have a company name, that may be available; otherwise, choose something that is different, catchy and abstract.

One word of caution, though: if you choose a name that is similar or the same as that of another company, whether they have an online presence or not, you could have problems later on.

Buying a domain name is simple and you may wonder why some companies charge just pence while others a few pounds. This is because they make more money from charging people to renew domain names than from the initial sales. After a couple of years’ trading, you may find yourself hit with a steep charge when you come to renew.

Once you have bought a domain name, you have registered yourself or your company as the only ones entitled to use it, but nothing else. For it to become an area on the web that people can view, and for you to be able to send and receive emails, the domain will need to be hosted.

However, hosting does not have to be done by the same company who sold you the domain name. So be careful of seller who try to tie you to their expensive hosting services when you buy a domain name from them.

Hosting your site