Do you want a domain name for your website? Have you been having difficulties finding that perfect name you need? Do you know what you should be looking for in a domain name? Or why and where you should buy the perfect one?
You can’t even register a name without a domain registrar who takes care of the back-end of the registration process. Imagine If there were no domain name system. You would have to browse the internet by typing long and difficult-to-remember IP addresses to open any website.
Moreover, don’t just register any name that’s available. There is a strategy adopted by successful online entrepreneurs in picking perfect names for their website. You too can learn to use the same approach for your next domain registration. In some ways, it’s also like business name registration.
All websites, no matter the size, big or small, need a domain name. You can’t have a site without a name. You can only buy these names through domain registrars. And if you already own a domain, you can also choose to transfer it from one domain registrar to another.
Whichever way, it’s also not that simple to know which domain registrar is the best for your online goals, your budget, or your needs.
Some domain registrars are more expensive than others. And some don’t offer free features, such as domain privacy protection. That’s why I added a list of the top domain registrars. It will help you make an informed decision about where to register your domain name.
For Nigerian domains, you can choose either the .com.ng or .ng names. For the most part, you can find the right domain name for your website without issues. However, many people are going with the opinion that only .com names are globally acceptable.
Even if that’s true, what if you can’t find the right .com name, what happens? Don’t you know that Google is gearing towards local search? And it will be mostly prioritising local domains like .com.ng and .ng names.
A major challenge with the domain name is availability. For example, if you want the “best-buy” as a name for your website, you may not find it to register. And because best-buy is registered, you cannot get it for your site.
However, that’s where the domain extension variants come into play. Best-buy may have been registered on .com but not registered on .shop or any other domain extension. So, if you want the best-buy, you can buy it under another domain extension. The Internet now has 1,535 domain extensions (TLDs) as of October 11, 2018.
In Nigeria, most of the hot domain names on .com extension are valuable on .com.ng and .ng domains. You can grab any name that’s right for your website on the .com.ng for as low as N1,250 for a year registration here.
Some people also buy these domain names and resale them for profit. Even if the name extension you want is available, it may be on sale at a premium. the number one premium domain site is Sedo.
Premium Domain Names
A premium domain is not different from another domain name. It’s just the value that makes it a premium name. For example, when I wanted to buy mystore.com, the price was $100,000. It was a premium domain. I ended up buying mystore.com.ng for just N2,500.
You can see a huge difference. But it’s the same name with the only difference being their domain extensions. And that is worth paying a premium for if you must have a .com extension.
However, most premium domain names are popular in the following extensions, .com, .net, .org, and .co. And even in these domain extensions, only one word or two-word domain fall into premium domains. Anything from three-word may be easily registered for $10 or even free on some domain registrar.
Top Domain Registrars
Choosing the right name and domain registrar shouldn’t be taken lightly. However, the differences between domain registrars are defined by their features and price offering. And in some case, the domain extension they register. For Nigeria domain extension registrars I will mention a few where you can register .com.ng and .ng names.
The list includes:
- Nira – The Nigeria Internet Registration Association(NIRA). It’s the registrar of all Nigeria TLD extensions.
- 101Domain – is the only global domain registrar brand that registers dot ng names.
- WhoGoHost – is the preferred Nigerian domain registrar. I use them for MyBlog.com.ng
- DomainKing – is a favourite Nigeria domain registrar.
- Intsra – is one of those registrars with unique service provision.
- Web4Africa – has been in operation far longer than most of them. Their service is also exceptional.
- Registeram – if I have my way this one got me with their name. And they are good as well.
- Upperlink – is another favourite Nigeria domain registrar.
Global Domain Extension Registrars:
I have also made a top list of the registrars for you as listed on HostingFacts. You can make an informed decision about which one is best for you. If you noticed any domain registrar missing you can add tell me on the comment section.
- GoDaddy is a highly popular domain registrar with 17 million users.
- Namecheap was named “Best Domain Name Registrar” in 2010 and “Most Popular Domain Name Registrar” in 2012.
- Bluehost is not only a great place to register a domain; it’s also a great place to host your website. Over 2 million sites are hosted with Bluehost.
- HostGator has 9 million registered domains. Like Bluehost, they are primarily a web hosting service provider.
- Name.com controls over 2 million domains out of the 16.5 million domains owned by their parent company (Right side).
- 1&1 has been around for ages in the domain registrar world; they were founded in 1988. With 1&1, .com sites are only $0.99 per year per domain.
- Register.com manages 2.5 million domains and offers extensive online marketing tools.
- InMotion Hosting provides automatic domain renewal and tons of different web hosting options.
- Google Domains is in the beta stage and doesn’t allow Nigerians yet, but it’s still a great domain registrar. They allow you to register your domain for up to ten years, and WHOIS privacy protection is included with every available domain name.
Domain Name Hosting
A domain name is like an address of a property. You still need the land to build the property that will have the address. That means you will need a website and a web host. But my focus here is on the web host.
You can host your domain name on any web host. Unlike domain registrar that may not be registering specific domain extensions, a web host is not restricted at all. So, your .com.ng domain can be hosted on any server around the world.
In choosing a web host, I like to use the one big brands are recommending. Like, Bluehost, it’s supported by Google domains and WordPress. These two big brands cannot recommend any product that’s not good enough. So, I’m also recommending it to you as well. Click here to buy web host from them.
Action Points on Perfect Domain Name
Also, choosing a perfect domain name for your website may need some brainstorming. You need to select a name that relates to what your site does. That will help users remember your business.
How you arrive at your name is vital to the website. Don’t just register any name because it’s available. You need a strategy to follow each time you want a domain name.
A good domain name is short, memorable and not more than three words. Anything longer may affect how visitors interact with your site. And some factors should change how you choose a domain.
Step One: Exact Match Domain (EMD)
Exact match domain or EMD means is that you are buying a name with the exact keyword in it. For example, if your primary website keyword is “best buy,” then your exact domain name should be www.bestbuy.com or bestbuy.com.ng or BestBuy.ng. Or whatever domain extension you prefer or is available.
Step Two: Partial Match Domain (PMD)
A partial match domain or PMD means the name has your primary site keyword but not in an exact match. For example, if your website primary keyword is “best buy,” your partial domain name may be www.originalbestbuy.com or www.mybestbuy.com, etcetera.
Step Three: Brand Name Domain
This one doesn’t try to match your primary website keyword, either exact or partially. The focus here is to get a domain name that represents your brand identity. Your brand is the focus, instead of your primary keyword.
Picking a brand domain name may be easier, shorter and memorable. That’s if your brand is a unique word formed by you. Also, all the famous names are either in use or registered as premium domains for sale.
Domain names are essential to your online presence. The chances that you will need a domain name soon are also high, even if you think now that you don’t have any business online.
The future of the internet is growing faster. And soon we will all need to register our name online to exist. You may laugh about it, but it’s already happening. Famous people and celebrities use their names as their domain name. You may be surprised that someone has already registered your name as a domain.
If personal names are getting scarce, what about business names? According to Internet Web Stats, over 1.9 billion websites are on the internet. There is no website without a domain name. And there are more websites than domain names. A domain can host multiple websites using sub-domains.
You can find a full list of ICAHN-Accredited Registrars here.