How To Find & Register A Domain Name

DevToolsGuy / Monday, July 08, 2013

Building a web site or web app involves a huge list of tasks that need to be completed for a site can go live. To start it all off, there is the planning stage, where all of the initial requirements that will need to be fulfilled are realized and discussed. After that stage, it’s time to design and build the website, following by rigorous testing sessions to ensure that everything done up to that point is in working order. There’s more than meets the eye when it comes to running a website, such as processes like project management, marketing, advertising, and much more. Furthermore, one tiny, but oh so important facet of this process, is the domain name the site will use. Without a domain name, there is no way for users to reach the site, other than via the IP address (which, let’s face it, isn’t going to work for a plethora of reasons). A domain is more than just a means to access the site though; it is also part of the branding and marketing.

We’ve put together a list of useful resources for both finding a domain name in the first place (long gone are the days when your preferred ‘.com’ address was easy to find) and for registering and maintaining it.

5 best domain name registrars (Lifehacker)
There are lots of articles on this topic, but this Lifehacker piece is pretty balanced and a good start to the world of domain name registrars.

Namemesh
Namemesh aims to help you find the perfect domain name by using a variety of methods. You start the process by entering a few keywords (for example ‘Infragistics’), then the site will  show you the usual direct domain matches, as well as some rearranged versions your keywords  to find something suitable. Options we got include:

  1. oninfragisitcs.com
  2. myinfragisitcs.com
  3. infragisitcsaholic.com (it is a tough word to work with!)

Panabee.com
A bit like Namemesh,  this site will try to transform your suggested keywords into a good domain name. It does this by applying all kinds of alterations to your words (dropping letters, writing it backwards, as well as using international domain names) and can produce some interesting results.

Expiring domains
An expiring domain is one that, though registered, is soon to come back on the market. Once it is back on the market it can be purchased just like any of the others. Lots and lots of domains become available every day (though the full process of purchasing one isn’t totally straightforward), and this site will help you find suitable examples.

DNSStuff
DNSStuff is a bit more techy, but is a great site to let you investigate domains and IP addresses. A good place to do a bit of digging if that is what you need to do.

NameChk
While this one is slightly off topic, this tool checks the availability of a chosen username on a huge number of social and web services. Before you pick a domain name (if you have gotten that far) have a look on NameChk to see if the same name is still available on Twitter YouTube, Facebook, Flickr, Disqus and a whole host of other sites!