Cheap Domain Name
If you desire to create a web site, this implies that you need a cheap domain name. A domain name is an easy-to-memorize name that you type in your web browser's address bar when you wish to access a particular site.
Why Do You Need a Domain?
This is a question I broach because last week my boss brought forth the idea of creating a website for our new project. That itself is not an issue, the issue is that he wants a web site, but has not decided yet what it should look like, what it should contain, and so on. All that he told me was the name of the site - its domain name. Thus, we now have an Internet address for a yet-to-be-made website and nothing aside from that.
Each website is located on a physical server. That physical server has its own physical address, popular also as an IP address. Visiting a website by typing the IP of the physical server in your browser, though, is not the best and most appropriate thing to do, so that was how and why domain names appeared. So, a domain corresponds to an IP address on the World Wide Web. Once it has been registered, of course.
Registering a Domain Name
To register a domain name, you first have to find a domain registration provider. NTC Hosting offers the best solution for my current and future projects - they offer a Domain Manager plan, which can be effortlessly upgraded to a hosting package at a later time - when my boss finally decides what objective the site will have.
Thus, to register a domain name, you need to choose a name for your site. Next, you need to choose a TLD - this is what follows the dot. For example, in 'cnet.com', '.com' is the top-level domain name (TLD). Clearly, '.com' stands for 'company', '.net' stands for 'network', '.org' stands for 'organization', and so on.
Once you've selected your domain name and your future domain registrar, you have to ascertain whether the domain name you wish to register is free, because someone else might have registered it already, however embarrassing this might be. Each registrar company, including NTC Hosting, has a search tool at their signup page, which verifies the availability of a certain domain name. To move ahead with the registration of a domain, you need to fill in some registrant information - the name, the address, the electronic mail address and the telephone number of the domain name's registrant.
You've Registered a Domain Name... Now What?
I registered .com, .net, .biz and .info domain names for our project, as per the wish of my still-uncertain-about-the-purpose-of-the-future-site boss. I tested the domain name administration interface NTC Hosting is offering and found it extremely user-friendly - everything is coherently structured and, from what I noticed in the web hosting CP demo at their site, once we upgrade to a cheap web hosting plan, it will remain the same, just with a lot more features. This, thank God, will save me quite a lot of inconvenience from having to administer my domain and web hosting account separately. So, while waiting for the boss to determine at least what the website should comprise, I was glad to discover that the domain administration interface offers DNS administration and domain renewal options, and - an extremely handy feature (!) - a parked domain name template, which I resorted to in order to create a "Coming Soon" page for our domain names.
Country-Code Top-Level Domains
I was quite pleased to find that NTC Hosting is offering multiple country-specific TLDs, because the project the website is meant for is multinational. Country-code top-level domain names are entrusted to local registries, which enable domain registrar companies to register cheap domain names, typically at prices that are cheaper than those offered to the end clients. There are many country-specific domains: .co.uk for the UK, .es for Spain, .de for Germany, .us for the United States, .ca for Canada, .com.au for Australia, etc. This, I am confident, will make my boss happy because we will be able to set up a local version of the site for each country where the project will be introduced.