How To Register A
New Domain Name

This page tells how to register a new domain name and transfer it to your web host

First you need to choose the best domain name for your website. A good domain name lets visitors and search engines know what your site is about and it helps get more targeted traffic and more clients.


Side Note: If you're going to buy Site Build It! the domain name (and hosting) is part of your subscription so don't purchase it except through Site Build It!. SBI will lead you through a number of steps before you choose your domain name to make sure you get the best one.


After you have a good idea of your ideal domain name go to a domain name registrar. There are a lot around so just do a search. I've been using namecheap which is currently charging less than $10 for one year's domain registration, and they have been fine. Other well known registrars are godaddy and 1and1.

Check with the registrar that your domain name is available. Most of the best names have been snapped up already, so you may have to try a few variations to get one that hasn't gone.

Follow the registrar's instructions to register the new domain name. You'll usually need to register with the registrar and log in to actually do the purchase. You'll need to give name, address, phone number etc.

Check the shopping cart carefully. Make sure the registrar hasn't added anything without you asking for it. Also make sure you are named as the registrant.

Linking the Domain Name To Your Website

Once you have register a new domain name and have a web host you can link them together.

When you sign up with a web host they will email you domain name servers (DNS) which will be something like

ns1.nameserver.com

ns2.nameserver.com

You'll be given at least 2 different name servers.

You have to change the domain servers from the ones your registrar currently has listed to the ones that your web host has sent you. That will link your domain name and your website IP address together so that people can find your website.

Every registrar does things a bit differently, but the procedure will be roughly as follows:
 
Go to your domain name registrar, log in and select the domain name you want to change the DNS on. Then look for a link that mentions domain name servers or DNS. You'll be taken to a page that lists your current domain name servers. (If not, look for another link). Type in the domain name servers that your web host gave you where you are told to.  Save the changes.

It takes 24-72 hours for the domain name to propagate across the internet so that your site is up and live. During that 24-72 hours your site will be up and down randomly while routers around the world update their cache.

Once the domain name has propagated across the Internet your site will be live, probably with a placeholder web page that the web host puts up until you upload your own pages.

This is a fairly broad description of what to do. Make sure you follow the instructions given to you by your domain name registrar and your web host to be sure everything works properly.

Renewing Your Domain Name Registration

Keep track of the registration date of your domain name, so you can renew it before it is due. If you let your domain name lapse, someone else can buy it and you'll have to start building traffic all over again with a new website name.

Your domain name registrar might send you an email letting you know your name needs renewing. Other registrars may renew the domain name automatically. (SBIers, your domain name will be renewed when you renew your Solo Build It! subscription.)

You might get a letter in the mail from a totally unrelated domain name registrar that is trying to get your business, and maybe even trying to scare/fool you into registering with them. I get these letters sometimes, and I actually got one yesterday for an expiring domain that I have. The price they quoted is four times what I pay at namecheap, so be careful.



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