Online Basics

6 Steps to Registering a Successful Domain Name

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Category: Online Basics , Choosing A Domain Name

Domain names are Web addresses that tell visitors where to find your online business. Yet did you know that domain names are also one of the most powerful tools used to build successful online businesses?

1. Registering Alternate Domain Name Extensions

Choosing a memorable, relevant domain name is only the beginning. In order for your domain name to really go to work for your business, it will need to help you attract visitors and search engines alike while also supporting your brand. Network Solutions Domain Name Scorecard is an online quiz that's designed to help you determine how well your domain name is performing -- and help you find ways to improve it. This quick, informative quiz addresses the six key areas of domain name registration, including:

2. Registering Domain Names to Protect Your Brand

Why stop at registering a domain name such as janesbagels.com when registering multiple extensions – such as janesbagels.net and janesbagels.org – can help you capture a wider audience? When visitors arrive at the alternate extension domains, you can redirect them to your website.

3. Registering Descriptive Domain Names

A visitor may intend to visit janesbagels.com, but mistakenly type jansbagels.com instead. By anticipating these typing errors and registering them as domain names, you can catch visitors before they are led astray by a competitor who may use the same strategy to lure your visitors to their own site.

Registering domain names that describe your products and/or services is another helpful domain name strategy. In the example janesbagels.com, relevant descriptive domains may include references to breakfast or catering. Adding a geographic element, such as a city name, is also a good way for local businesses to capture visitors in their immediate area.

4. Extending Your Domain Registration Term

While many people renew their domain name registration annually, it is possible to renew for an extended term. This option, along with auto-renewal services, can help you avoid losing your domain name due to forgetfulness. Also, search engines may view a long-term domain name commitment favorably when indexing your site.

5. Electing Private Domain Registration

In today's world, private domain registration is more of a necessity than a luxury. Yet many continue to neglect this critical component of domain name registration. For a small monthly fee, private domain registration can keep your personal contact information out of the WHOIS database, where it is available to the public through a simple domain search.

6. Securing Your Domain Name Registration

By locking your domain name, you protect it from both unauthorized activity and human error - your own. When your domain is locked, a third party cannot transfer your domain to a different registrar without your consent. Domain locking also prevents you from making accidental changes to your domain name servers, which can disrupt your website and business email.

In as little as 30 seconds, Network Solutions' Domain Name Scorecard quiz can give you an overall score based on your domain name's rating in these six key areas. You can then use this information to unlock your domain name's full potential as a business building tool.