Okay, we’ve talked about where to start when you are thinking about starting a blog, and we’ve talked about the differences between Blogger & WordPress. Now it’s time to talk about the next most important thing to do when you have made your decision about which Blogging platform you want to go with….choosing and buying a domain.
To start off, if you are asking yourself what in the world a domain is, I’ll explain. A domain is essentially your web site address. For example, the domain name for this blog is www.thesensiblemom.com. Your domain would be something like www.yourwebsitename.com or .net or .org, etc…..
It’s pretty easy to understand, and once you have the understanding of what a domain is, you need to know where to find out if the domain you want for your site is available and where you can purchase it from. There are plenty of domain registrars out there, but here’s small list to get you started in your search:
Network Solutions (I’ve used them before and was pretty happy.)
GoDaddy (I currently use godaddy for all of my domains – 5 total.)
To find out if the domain you want is available, I suggest doing a search for it in a search engine or typing it directly into the address bar of your browser. Don’t search for it directly on the domain registrar until you are ready to buy. This is because domains seem to have a way of disappearing when you search for them directly on the domain registrar’s website – this is what I’ve read at least. Once you know that the domain name you want is available, go ahead and purchase it from a domain registrar.
If you’ve never purchased a domain before, it might surprise you that the cost is relatively cheap. I pay betwen $8-$12 a year for each of my domains, and I always make sure to use a coupon code! The process to purchase a domain on these sites is pretty straightforward. Although, I’ve noticed that it can be a bit confusing on godaddy.com because of all the “extra” stuff they give you the option to add on. Simply click “No Thanks” to all of the extras.
And that’s it. Once you get through that process, you will own use of a domain for typically 1 year. After that, if you still want to keep that domain, you’ll simply renew it with the domain registrar.
Next week, I will talk about web hosting. Once you have web hosting set up, then you can log into your account with the domain registrar you’ve chosen and change the nameservers for your domain to the nameservers given to you by your web host. That way your domain will point to the server where your fabulous new blog or website is hosted.
If anyone has any specific questions about this process, I’d be happy to answer them in the comments section. Also, if you have purchased your own domain, I’d love to know which domain registrar you use and your experience with them so far.