Common Domain Questions

What is a domain name?
What is a domain extension?
How important is having a good domain name?
What's the best domain name for me?
What makes it a good domain name?
Can I have more than one domain name?
Do I have to have a "localised" domain name?
The domain I wanted is already gone. Now what?
Just how much is a domain worth on the secondary market?
How do I go about buying a domain name?

What is a domain name?

A domain name is a means to easily remember the name of a website address. All webservers and computers have a unique number (i.e. 218.214.70.230) which acts much the same way as a telephone number. As it's easier to remember names than it is numbers, a system was devised to attach a domain name to each individual web address.

What is a domain extension?

A domain extension is the combination of letters that follow the "dot" in a domain name, such as "com". Dot com is the most sought after and common domain extension. It is shorthand for "commercial" and was originally intended for use by commercial enterprises on the internet. Other popular extensions are .net (originally intended for internet aligned applications and .org (intended for non profit organisations but now available to anyone). There are currently literally hundreds of various extensions available, from country and region specific, such as .co.uk for Britain and .us ;for the United States. Some country and regional domains are Government regulated and not available for general registration by outside sources. Other extensions which are becoming popular due to the fact that "All of the good dot coms are gone", are .biz, .info, .name, and region specific extensions that have been released to the global community, such as .cc (Cocos Islands) and .tv (Tevula).

How important is having a good domain name

It's irrelevant whether you have a "local" domain or a global one, such as dot com. These days the majority of traffic (visitors) to your website will have probably been guided there through the use of keywords, (a revenue earner imposed by some search engines). However, a good domain name can still be the driving force behind visitors finding your site.

Let's suppose you were going to open a store but the only location you could get was over at the back end of town, miles away from the mainstream of traffic and right down the end of a back alley. You'd probably get a few locals as regular customers but not a lot of passing traffic. After all, how would people know you even existed? You could advertise and that might generate a smattering of business but unless you had something that people wanted that was hard to find elsewhere why would they look in on you? 
Imagine however, how different things would be if your store was in the middle of the busiest shopping center in the country and you had prime exposure. The vast difference in revenue would be truly amazing. The same is true with trading on the Internet. Unless you have a prime Internet address how are people going to find you? Sure, your regular customers would know where you're located and again you could advertise your address, and if you're offering something really special people just might take down your site name and look you up. Put yourself in their shoes and ask yourself "Could I remember my domain name easily". If your answer is yes then well done but don't go away just yet because there are a few things you may not realise. If your answer is no, then don't despair because the solution is a simple one.

What's the best domain name for me?

Some people find what they're looking for on the internet by typing particular keywords into Google or similar search engine. Others actually type in a web address into the address bar of their browser in the hope that a website may exist that belongs to a domain name. For example, someone may type in www.discosongs.com looking for a site that specialises in 70's music. When people use this method to find specialist websites they nearly always use dot com as the extension.

What makes it a good domain name?

A good rule of thumb for a domain name is "what you say is what you get". For instance, supposing your web address is something like "www.two-for-1-4-2day.com". Just how do you tell people in a conversation without having to go to great lengths in deciphering it for them? When you have to explain if the name is made up of numerals (i.e. "4" instead of "four"; or "for"), then that's not really an ideal name. The ideal name is "as it sounds", no need for interpretation or explanation. No hyphens or "numerals for words" substitutions, just a plain how it sounds name that is easy to recall.

If your business is manufacturing or selling a generic type of product then the chances of obtaining a name for that product alone are fairly slim. For instance, just about every generic name in the "dot com" domain extension has already been registered, so the chances of getting a name like "shoes.com" or "motorcycles.com" etc. are just about non existent on the primary market.

Can I have more than one domain name?

There is no limitation on the number of names you can own, in fact many Companies and Organizations own quite a number of domain names and they have them all pointing to their main website. That means that a company that sells motorcycles for instance, and this is a purely hypothetical example, might have the domain name www.motorcyclesales.com as the official website address and may also have the names "motorbikes.net", "motorcyclesforsale.com", "usedmotorcycles.net" etc. and thereby possibly increasing the traffic flow to their website.
There's no reason why you or your company can't do the same thing and generate more and more traffic to your site. And this doesn't necessarily pertain to just "dot com". Many businesses have also registered or obtained pertinent names in other popular extensions like "dot net" and "dot tv" etc. again as a means of generating higher traffic flow.

Do I have to have a "localised" domain name?

No. In Australia for instance, it is unfortunately common belief that Companies and Businesses have to register a name which is derived from the company or business name in the same order of syntax as their trading or registered business name. And that it must have the country extension following the "dot com", that is .com.au. It is because of a lack of understanding that Businesses don't realise that they can break the shackles of being stuck with a poorly worded Government Regulated local domain name and just get themselves a better name without the restrictions of a localised domain name extension.
A hypothetical example would be "Joseph Mandianna & Sons Cooking Spices Pty. Limited". If Joe was to register a domain name in the localised form it would have to be something like "www.jmandiannacookingspices.com.au" or "www.jmspices.com.au" or "www.jmandsons.com.au" etc. etc. Very restrictive and it also means Joe is likely to only get to sell his spices on the local market.
That may be fine for Joe if he is happy with just selling locally because no-one from outside of Australia is going to find him. The "dot au" extension may well be completely overlooked on the major global search engines. If Joe decided however that he really would like to trade internationally then he would be well advised to get a global name as well. He could keep his "local" domain name as the name of his website but then he could also register or buy a more succinct "Global" domain name or names that also point to his site.
"www.cookingspices.com"  would certainly get Joe a lot more traffic and increase his bottom line accordingly. So Joe has his local domain name submitted to the localised search engines driving the local traffic, and he also has his "dot com" submitted on the "global" search engines bringing in overseas traffic.
Makes for good business.

The domain I wanted is already gone. Now what?

The well of really good "dot com" domain names is getting very dry indeed, however there are plenty of high quality names available on the secondary market. As mentioned earlier, try to think what your potential customer would type in to search for a product that you make or carry. What would you type in?
Think like a customer and then when you have worked out the most relevant word or phrase go to a site that registers domain names. (You can pay as little as $10 a year for a .com .net or .org). If your ideal name is gone it may turn out to be for sale somewhere.

Firstly, if you want to know who has the rights to that name or names go to a "whois" lookup site. It may turn out that by getting the owner details you can approach them by email to see if they may be open to an offer to sell you the name.
If that fails then there are thousands of sites similar to this one selling really good names (and some not so good). Be prepared to spend quite some time doing this because at the end of the day it will be worth the effort if you can get the perfect name for your website. Simply type in the phrase "domainnamesforsale" or "domainsforsale" or even "domains + for sale" on the search engine you use, ie Google, Yahoo etc. and watch the thousands of sites that come up. Some compromise may be necessary however but you can still get good results. For example, you may own a lawfirm or be a lawyer specialising in the stocks and bonds market. You find that stockslaw.com is not available nor is bondslaw.com. What are the alternatives? What about ShareMarketLaw.com? That's not a bad compromise. 

Just how much is a domain worth on the secondary market?

You may see names for sale at what might seem ridiculously high prices, and indeed a lot of inferior names are well overpriced. Supply and demand dictates that yes GOOD names are worth a lot of money but just how much? If your company is quite large and gaining a high public profile and you want to increase that profile, you generally need to have a good budget put aside for advertising. Some Companies spend small fortunes doing this. If your company has an advertising budget running into the hundreds of thousands or even 7 figures, what's the point of scrimping when it comes to getting a really good domain name which can be even more affective in some cases than media advertising. The two together however can be a powerful combination. But when it's all boiled down, a good name is only worth what someone is prepared to pay for it. Just like any other commodity.

How do I go about  buying a domain name?

Buying a pre-registered domain name from us is a very simple process. Firstly, you can either look through our entire portfolio of domains found on our "Domains for Sale" page. If you have a rough idea of the type of domain you're after, you may find that it's quicker to go straight to one of the preselected catorgories. For instance, "Business & Technolgy" related if you're looking for a name that has a commercial feel.
Once you find the name that suits your needs just take note of the listed fee. Go to the "Make an Offer" link under the list of names.In the "Contact Us" form that comes up just type in the details. If you're making a counter offer, type that in. Submit your offer and we'll process it as soon as possible. You will then be contacted and once we have a mutually agreed price, we can commence the sale process. An account will be opened at our holding registrar (eNom.com), and the domain placed into it. In the meantime payment can be made using the following options.
Method A. Payment via PayPal (preferred) Pay into our account and once we receive notification that funds have been received we will forward eNom account details to you along with the password. You will then be advised to change this to your own choice and the domain is yours.
Method B (1) Payment via Direct Deposit for 50% of the sale price. Domain moved into holding account at eNom.com (Nameservers and all domain contacts except "administrative" changed to buyer's details. Upon payment of the remaining 50%, domain name moved to owner's choice of registrar if required and transfer of ownership to buyer completed.
Method B (2)  Direct Deposit for total sale price. (All registration details changed to buyers registration details. Domain name moved to owner's choice of registrar if required. Password to domain name given to new owner. Transaction complete.
Method C (1) 50% of payment made via wire transfer. (Details as for Method B (1))
Method C (2) Full payment via wire transfer. (details as for Method B (2))

Escrow service not available on names under $2000. All registrar transfer fees (if applicable) to be paid by buyer. All third party escrow fees (if applicable) to be paid by buyer.

Your Question

If you have a question about domain names that we haven't covered above, please feel free to email it to us and we'll try to answer it as best and as soon as we can. Click or tap  here to go to our contact form.