Now that you know the purpose of the website you are setting up, let’s go through what you need to kick start it.
The very first step would be to decide on a domain name.
What is a domain name?
A domain name is essentially the name of your website, or more specifically your website address.
It is what you would type in to your browser’s address bar to visit a website.
Some classic examples would be Google, Amazon.
The domain name you choose should ideally represent your business brand, either your business name or the nature of your business, and is unique to you.
Domain names can consist of alphabets, numbers and hyphens, although it cannot start or end with a hyphen. Also, uppercase and lowercase characters are treated the same.
While you can have up to 63 characters in a domain name, the most effective domain names are between 8 to below 20 characters.
Domain name extensions
A domain extension, also called a top level domain, is the part that comes after your domain name.
Google for example, has several domain extensions, starting with google.com, as well as google.com.my.
The .com and .com.my are domain extensions, where .com.my is country specific, whereas .com is international.
Examples of domain name extensions:
International domain extensions are managed by ICANN, whereas country specific domains are managed by a registrar in the country it represents.
Country specific domains are often restricted to businesses or persons residing in the country, so if you are a Malaysian registered business, you will not be able to register a domain with .com.sg, and vice versa.
If you are interested to learn more about country specific domains, see Wikipedia’s Country code top-level domain.
How to get a domain name?
Domain names are managed by domain registrars.
Just like when you buy a car, you need to register it and get a registration number, domain names need to be purchased and registered through a domain registrar.
Pricing for domain names vary according to the domain registrar as well as the extension you choose.
Domain names are renewable annually. If you do not renew, your website will not be accessible.
Before you rush off to get your domain, let’s look at what else you will need to put up your website.
The next thing to consider is hosting, and in most cases, you can purchase the domain and hosting as a package from one source.