This article is everything important you need to know about domain names. Especially if you’re in the market to buy one, or perhaps several. Some of the information is simply to satisfy a little curiosity. Knowledge is a powerful weapon one should always be armed with. It’s like a lightsaber but safer. Education never really made anyone lose a hand. Sorry, Luke. Nothing personal.

Who Controls Domain Names?

www.ican.org to learn more about ICAN

The ICAN, Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. This organization manages the development and architecture of the internet domain namespace. They are the responsible party to authorize domain registrars. Like which domain names can be registered and reassigned.

Registrars are the companies where you buy domain names from. Places like GoDaddy, Domain, Google Domains, etc. Simply pay the one-time registration fee, and then a yearly fee for the duration of time you wish to own the domain.

Who Owns Domains?

Technically, nobody owns domain names. Just as nobody owns the internet. When you purchase a domain, you are purchasing the rights to use it. You become the registrant, and pay the registrar for that ‘ownership’. Most contracts are in yearly terms, so you can easily renew your domain for as long as you want.

If you need to know who knows a domain, you can use WhoIs. You can pay your registrar extra to have your registrant information hidden on these lookups if you’re overly concerned about that.

What are Domain Names?

In technical terms, a domain is a distinct subset of the Internet with addresses sharing a common suffix or under the control of a particular organization or individual. Basically, it’s a location. If the World Wide Web is a highway, a domain is a particular driveway. Because the internet is a huge place, domain names often have multiple extensions. So each domain has multiple driveways. They may or may not be owned by different people.

For example, you could have the following domains:

  • Shineconsulting.biz
  • Shineconsulting.net
  • Shineconsulting.us

That’s 3 different domain names because it leverages different extensions. .com, .edu, .org, .ca., could be additional extensions. This would make a total of 7 different domain names. Owning numerous gives you advantages to your search engine optimization and branding. You don’t want 12 Shine Consulting companies competing with you on the web.

When Did They Get So Popular?

www.symbolics.com was the first ever domain name

The first domain on record was registered on March 15, 1985. It was a .com. In case you’re wondering, the “com” in “.com” means “commercial.” By 1992, the ICAN had over 14,000 .com domains registered. Today there are over 330,000,000 domain names registered. Over 115,000,000 are .com domains. Because of the growth of digital technology, extensions had to be implemented to dramatically increase the number of domains available. Domain names experience a growth of about 3.7% per year. That’s impressive.

Where Do Domains Go?

Domains can only be 63 characters long

If your domain name is your driveway, your website is the vehicle you park there. Along with any other files you ‘place’ there. It’s an address that navigates people to what you want them to see. Your files are stored on a server. Where that is, is up to you. Your domain ‘points’ to that server of information. More particularly, certain files within that server. A single server could have hundreds of domains pointing to it. When you have multiple domain names, you can point other domains to your main one. So for example. Shineconsulting.net and Shineconsulting.us point to Shineconsulting.biz. Which is about to point to crystaldsmith.com. This gives you more opportunities to be found on the web. It also makes it easy to prevent someone mistakenly going to the wrong site, or an old site.

Why Are Domains Important?

For starters, you have to have so people can find you on the WWW. Let’s take a quick look at an overview of why you need a good domain name.

  • Catchy, memorable domain names get more traffic because it’s easy to remember. Using your name or slogan could be a great domain name
  • It adds credibility to your business. Having a branded website adds trust to consumers
  • As long as you own it your branding goes with you. You won’t be forced to lose data transferring to a new domain
  • You may get greater search engine ranking for your industry
  • Domains allow you to build a brand! You should have at least one domain name that matches your business name

Thanks for reading! I appreciate your stopping by.
Crystal D. Smith, Jedi Marketing Master.
jedi@crystaldsmith.com