available domain namesAfter designing your web site the process really gets exciting! You’re ready to get your new site online but how do you begin? Finding available domain names is the first step to getting your website online.

Along with the many Internet advances over the years came a multitude of url choices and places to register a domain name.

But, how and where do you find a domain name for your website? Here’s a step-by-step guide to lookup a great domain name for your website.

Available Domain Names: Step-by-step Guide for Beginners

This lesson is about availability, lookup and purchase of Internet domains. If you are a beginner and plan to design your own website you’ll most certainly need to know the definition and do an ownership search for available domain names. Here are some tips.

Step 1: Choose a Theme or Company Name for your Website

Write down the theme of your website. Is it a personal site about baking recipes or is it a business website selling financial e-books?

Whatever the theme, be sure the name you lookup from the search list reflects this theme in some way. The purpose of a domain name is to help visitors locate your website quickly and easily. Your url (i.e. www.yourname.com ) should be simple and easy to remember.

Step 2: Definition of Domain Name – Understand the Suffixes, or Extensions

Domain name is just the address for your website. It’s the www. if you will. Suffixes or extensions are what goes after the “dot” such as:

.com

.net

.org

.tv

.gov

.edu

etc., etc.

Choose a suffix that reflects your type of website. If it is a business site, lookup .com or .net names for availability.

If it’s an educational or college-related site, purchase an .edu. If it’s an organization, choose .org and so on. This helps visitors to identify what type of website you have from the moment they view your domain name.

Step 3: Lookup and Availability of Domain Names

Once you have a general idea of what type of suffix you want, you can begin brainstorming for ideas. Do a domain name ownership search through a registrar or provider such as whois.net .

These sites offer a simple search form where you can fill in variations to check for availability. If the domain name is available, you can register it. If not, some ISP sites will offer suggestions for other variations of the domain name. You can try out as many as you wish until you find the perfect one for your online presence.

About Buying Pre-Owned Domain Names

Some will argue to get domains from an expired name list. This can be a plus or minus. If the site was simply given up and has page rank through Google, it might be a good choice. However, if it has been abused for spam or or other reasons, this avenue will hurt more than it helps.

I would only suggest getting a used domain name for a redirect only. You can find a website which has good rankings in the search engines and then direct all traffic to your new web site. This can still be costly so it depends upon how much you want to pay when you purchase a URL.

Lookup the Best Domain Name Available

REMEMBER: Take plenty of time to find the right domain name for your website. You will be stuck with it for a VERY long time and many beginners hurry through the process only to have to change domain names later!

Choosing Your ISP ( Internet Service Provider )

Below is a company where you can check for domain name availability and also register your domain name once you find the perfect one.

Available Domain Names at H9 Web Hosting

This is one of the better companies online where you can purchase affordable names in the DNS system and even host it at a very affordable rate.

They offer space for personal and business including SSL web hosting so that you can run a store or sell products through e-commerce online.

This company is on the top of my list when it comes to rates and service. At the time of this writing, Host 9 is where I have Webmaster Course .Com hosted.

Here’s a walk-thru of the domain name checking process:

a) When you arrive at H9 Web Hosting, look for the purchase options menu and do a Domain Name lookup. ** NOTE: Searching for the availability of a domain name does not commit you to buy it.

b) You should see a box to enter the URL you have in mind. Type your desired domain name (without the suffix), and then choose a suffix (.com, .net, .org, etc.).

c) If the domain name has already been registered, you will see a message letting you know this.

If not, you can register your domain right then and there if you wish, or register it later. As you can see, it’s easy to find and register a domain name once you know how to do a quick lookup.

As a beginner, however, this can sometimes be confusing. If you get lost, just click for support and someone will guide you through the complete process. I’ve found through the years that Host Nine has an excellent support staff. They will walk you through if needed.

Design business websitesLookup & Sign Up

Keep in mind, there are two simple steps to securing your website online: Lookup and register a domain name and Sign up for hosting space.

Once you have a domain name and your hosting is secured, you’re ready to place your web pages online for everyone in the world to see! Hope this tutorial helps with your domain ownership search! – Bob Pardue, Webmaster Course

Filed under: Web Design