If you’re starting up a new blog, you’ll need to decide on a name. Once you’ve decided got a name for your blog, you should register a domain name. A domain looks more professional and you can use it with any platform. It also helps to protect your brand. I’ve got this easy tutorial for how to register a domain name, and I’ve included a few tips to help you with selecting and purchasing your domain.
Step 1: Search
Go to your registrar of choice. I like to use NameCheap. Look up the domain you want with the search box. Check your spelling! If you’re not sure which extension to use, just try .com first, since it’s probably the one you should get if it’s available.
If the domain shows as not available, it means that someone else has already registered it. At that point you have a few options:
- Try different variations
- Buy the domain from a domain seller
- Choose a different name
Try different variations
Here are some to try:
- Choose another domain extension instead – Like Tanea.org, GirlHero.net, and HelloNatural.co
- Add a word to the front of the name – Like ABeautifulMess.com or TheWonderForest.com
- Add a word to the end of the name – Like ElleandCompanyDesign.com or OliveAndIvyBlog.com
- Add a dash between words (I don’t recommend more than one) – Like Design-Seeds.com
Buy the domain from a seller
Sometimes, the domain will be taken but it’ll still be available for purchase through a seller. This is when someone has a domain that they are trying to sell. I don’t recommend this, though, because the prices are usually outrageous.
Choose a different name
It sucks, but sometimes you have to just choose a different name. Who knows? Maybe this time you’ll come up with something even better.
Step 2: Purchase
Domain names generally cost between $10-$13 a year, and you must pay your registrar yearly to keep the domain registered. If you want, you can register more than one year at a time, usually for a discounted rate. But for me, I just do one year at a time.
When you add the domain to your cart, you can choose any add-ons you’d like. NameCheap automatically adds WhoIs protection (making your registration information anonymous on the web) to your domain for free.
Don’t forget to enter a coupon code if you can! This can save few a few dollars, depending on your registrar. Visit NameCheapCoupons.com for the latest NameCheap coupon codes.
Step 3: Set it up
Now that you’ve purchased your domain, it’s time to set it up with your blog. In most cases, this will just require you to change the nameservers in your domain panel to the ones instructed by your host or platform. But for some blogs, like Tumblr, you’ll need to follow special instructions.
And that’s it! Now you have a domain name registered and set up for your blog.