Registering a domain is a straightforward process, but it’s easiest if you understand the details before you start. Let’s look at what you’ll have to do, one step at a time. Our checklist takes less than 3 minutes!
Registering a Domain Name in 5 Easy Steps
- Choose a domain name. It needs to be unique, and you have to pick from many appropriate top-level domain or extensions. The most common are .com, .net, and .org, but over 80 choices are available. Before you decide on the name, make sure you properly research and vet the domain.
- Choose a registrar. Pick a domain registration company that provides good service, privacy protections, and strong security against domain hijacking attempts.
- Register the domain. Go to the registrar’s site, select the domain or domains, and fill in the information. You’ll need to open an account if you don’t already have one, and include contact information. ICANN regulations require that your contact information is made available to the public when a WHOIS lookup is done on your domain name. However, FYNE provides a privacy service that hides your identity (address, phone number, email address).
- Pay for your registration. Most providers will accept Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express in the form of a credit or debit card. Some also will process a bank transfer or PayPal payment.
- Connect to your name servers. You can host your domain on your own hardware or a web hosting service. Either way, you need two domain name (or DNS) servers, so the world can reach your web site or server through your domain. Two DNS addresses are required, in order to maximize reliability and uptime. If you use a hosting service, look to the host for its DNS information. Log into your account with the registrar, and update your domain with the names and IP addresses of the domain name servers.
It can take up to 24-48 hours after registering a domain for your DNS information to propagate (or spread) across the whole Internet, so don’t panic if you can’t access your site immediately. But if it’s still not available after a day, check that you’ve entered all the information correctly. If all goes well, your web site will quickly be available to the world!