Why Registering a Domain Name is Smart for Any Business

A domain name provides an Internet address for your business. The computers that are the cornerstones of the World Wide Web don't need names. They identify your website by numbers, which comprise your Internet Protocol (IP) address. These numbers currently are set up in 4 sets of 4 numbers, separated by periods or 'dots', like this: 111.222.333.444, for example. As you can imagine, there are not too many people who will be able to remember your IP address, so that's why the domain name system was started.

The purpose of a domain name is so that people can find your website. That makes sense, right? Whether you just have a personal blog or a full-featured online store, if you didn't have a domain name, the only ones visiting your site would be computers or bots. Since computers and bots don't have bank accounts, they don't make the ideal customer so we need to be sure that people are the ones who can find our websites.

Years ago, when the Internet had just been developed, most people didn't have home computers and those that did were not crazy about the idea of doing any shopping through the mystery of cyberspace. Today, however, billions are being spent over the web every year, and that number is growing by leaps and bounds. New security features, applications and programs have made it safe and easy for people to shop online - and they're doing so to the tune of millions every single day.

There are tons of free places online to get your own web space - why shouldn't you just use one of these free pages for your business website? This is true. You could set up a page on any number of free platforms but that's risky. What happens if the platform goes out of business? Poof - your site is gone with the wind. That's not the only reason it's preferable to register a domain name, either. There are several other benefits that you gain from registering your own name compared to using a free service.

Ownership and Control

A domain name is an actual piece of property. It is an asset for your business and has a value just as any other asset does. It can be sold, with or without an actual website. When you create a page on free service, you will never actually own that page. It can't be listed as a business asset. The service can take that page away from you at any time as it belongs to them, not to you.

By the same token, a free hosting service or platform is the one who gets to make the rules. If they don't like your way of doing business or what you put up on your page, they can make you change it or they can remove it altogether. With many of these sites, all it takes is a report from a competitor to get slapped with an accusation of spam or other wrongdoing. Those reporting don't have to prove their allegations. Instead, it ends up with you having to prove your innocence, which is a lot harder to do most of the time.

Because you own the domain name once you've registered it, you can take it with you should you want to 'move' your site from one host to another. Hosting providers do go out of business on occasion or you just may find that you're no longer happy wit

Identity and Branding

With a brick and mortar storefront, location is everything. You need to be easily accessible, have good parking and not be in the middle of nowhere. On the Internet, your domain name is your location. You don't have to worry about being easily accessible, having a big parking lot or being near a main road. You do still need a location, though. When you register a domain name, you are establishing an online location for your business.

A smart business doesn't just own a domain name. They use that domain as part of their overall marketing strategy. That means that domain name is going to be on every bit of marketing materials that the business produces. This is part of the branding of your identity that you established upon registering a domain name.

It's very important that you put some serious thought into choosing the right domain name, before you go to register one. What does the domain name say about your business? What impression will it give your customers or your prospects?

Authority and Credibility

Registering a domain name for your business is he first step in establishing your credibility as an online entity. Without credibility, you have no shot at building any authority along the 'information superhighway'. If you bypass this step and go with a free web space, it looks unprofessional and amateurish. This won't build trust and authority, will it?

To improve the profile of your website, you have to register a domain name. The serious directories are not going to include subdomains on free hosting platforms in their listings. By and large, search engines, a major source of traffic for most websites, are not going to rank your site as high without having a real domain name. Owning your domain name shows the search engines and other web authorities that you a serious player on the World Wide Web.

For the very minimal amount of money that it takes to register a domain name, there really is no better way to get an incredible return on investment. Registering a domain name is good for at least a year, so your name is protected for at least that long. Most domain names can be registered for up to ten years at a time, which is usually a lower cost per year, plus registering for multiple years adds to your credibility.

Adrian Lawrence is the author of this article and is one of the webmasters at Discount Domains 


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