How to Buy a Domain Name

Editor | WordPress Blogs | Monday, August 24th, 2009

Your first step in getting your new blog up is to buy your domain name (also called a URL). There are a lot of domain registrars to choose from, we recommend GoDaddy as their prices are good and their support is great.

Some considerations when choosing your domain name:

1. If you’re setting up your blog for business purposes, you want to have your main keyword in your domain name. So, before you go to GoDaddy, brainstorm some domain names to have ready to see if they’re available.

2. Always use a .com (instead of a .net or .info, etc.) because people just naturally assume all domains are .coms.

Here are the step-by-step guidelines for purchasing your domain from GoDaddy:

1. Go to http://www.godaddy.com/

2. Look for the “Start a Domain Search” box on the GoDaddy’s main page and enter the domain name you want to purchase, and click “Go” to see if it’s available. If it’s not, try another domain on you list until you find one that is available.

Note: If you have a name that you really want or need, you can do this: Say you really need the keyword “Barbie dolls” and it is not available. You can try adding a short word to either the front or back of your main keyword, like “mybarbiedolls” or “barbiedollsstore”…Something like that. It will work just as well SEO-wise (SEO = search engine optimization = how you get found on the Internet).

3. When you find your available domain name, click on “Proceed to Checkout”.

4. The next page will have all sorts of upsells and options skip them and click on “No Thanks”.

5. The next page is your Domain Name Registration. If this is your first time purchasing a domain name from GoDaddy, fill out all the information to set up an account. Or, if you already have an account with GoDaddy, just log in.

Note: For some reason, if you have an existing account and log in, it usually knocks you back to square one, so you just need to enter your domain name again in the search box. Don’t try to figure it out, there is no logic to it. Just re-enter your domain name in the search box again and you’re back in business.

Either way, your next step is to “Proceed to Checkout” again…

6. The next page should be the “Registration and Checkout Options”. It is usually set on 2 years, which I think is the best option, but you can change it to one year or more years, whatever you choose. I usually do the 2-years. You can skip all of the options and upsells, and check the “No thanks. I’m ready to check out.” box and then click on “Continue.”

7. The next page is more upsells that you can skip over. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click on “No thanks”.

8. Finally…You are at the Check Out page.

(1) Review Your Shopping Cart: Make sure your order is correct, your domain name is spelled the way you want it, it is a .com, and you have the number of years registration that you want.

(2) Select Your Payment Method: Credit Card, Check or PayPal.

(3) Terms of Service Agreements: Check both boxes agreeing to their terms (it’s always a good idea to read these things, not that I always do it) and then click on “Continue with Checkout”.

9. You’re almost done! This should be your “Secure Checkout” page, where you enter your payment information and then click on “Place Your Order”. This should be the end of the process, and you now own your domain. Be sure to print your receipt. You’ll get and email confirmation also.

10. OK, you now own your own domain name.

Your next step is to get your hosting account. Your domain name is your “address”, your hosting account is your “real estate”, the place where your “address” actually is on the world wide web. We recommend HostGator because the price is great, but the support is unbeatable.

 If you have any questions, feel free to give me a call, post a comment or send me an email.

Tami DuBose

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