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Domain Name Hosting

Selecting the right domain name for hosting is critical for the success of your online business. In fact, it can make the difference between success and failure. Associating with an easy to remember, easy to spell domain name will help customers remember and recognize your site. See our affordable hosting plans for domain web hosting.

Overview

IP AddressComputers on the Internet use a unique number to identify and communicate with each other. This number is called an "IP Address". For example, if you type 206.130.96.50 into the address bar of your browser, you will get to the WestHost website. Domain Name Systems (DNS) were created to map domain names (like westhost.com) to specific IP addresses. Obviously, the domain name "westhost.com" is much easier to remember than "206.130.96.50".

URL AddressA domain name is a unique address ("URL") to a website on the Internet. It starts with a unique word, or combination of letters and/or numbers (i.e. "westhost"), followed by a common "top-level" domain (i.e. ".com").

Specifically, the domain name is a combination of an approved top-level (or 1st level) domain suffix representing the category of domain (.com, .net, .org, etc.), preceded by a group of letters and/or numbers making up the mid-level (or 2nd level domain).

Anatomy of a URL

Top-Level Domains (TLDs)

There are over 200 top level domains on the Internet. Many are for specific countries and managed by national registries (.ca for Canada or .uk for the United Kingdom). However, the most popular are considered "generic" and used globally:

.com (commercial) - This domain is the most popular and most recognized in the world for domain web hosting. This is one of the original top-level domains and has grown to be the largest. If you register your own domain, it is highly recommended to try and acquire one with this extension. There are no restrictions for use by individuals or businesses from any geographic location. WestHost free domain hosting for .com domain names on select web hosting plans!

.net (network) - net domains were originally intended for use by network oriented entities, however there are no formal restrictions on who can register a domain with this extension, so it is still very popular for domain name hosting. Also offered as free domain hosting option on select plans.

.org (organization) - Originally encouraged for use by non-profit organizations and individuals, there are no restrictions for use of the this domain extension.

.biz (business) - This generic domain extension was introduced in 2001 as an alternative for businesses whose preferred a .com domain and web hosting plan but had already been registered by someone else. There are no specific legal or geographic requirements for registering a .biz domain other than it being for "commercial use".

.info (informative) - This domain alternative was released in 2001 to take pressure off of the crowded .com domain and web hosting. It has been extremely popular since its launch and has no restrictions on registration.

.us (United States) - Registrants of .us domains should be entities connected or located in the United States. It is also a popular domain for U.S. businesses looking for an alternative to .com.

.mobi (mobile) - Domains ending with .mobi are intended for mobile devices and websites providing services to them. This domain extension was made available for general registration in October 2006. Your existing website may look good on a PC, but probably not on a mobile phone unless optimized for one. This would be a good reason to register a .mobi domain and build a mobile-compatible version of your existing website.

Getting your own domain name

Selecting your own domain for web hosting allows you to brand your website as well as own the e-mail rights to that domain. Domain names typically say something about the business they represent. For example:

  • Company Name: Sven's Shoes
  • Internet Domain Name: svensshoes.com
  • E-mail Addresses: sales@svensshoes.com, support@svensshoes.com

Once you've decided on a domain name, don't wait! There are millions of domains that are already taken, but many more still available. Search for your domain now using our enhanced website and domain registration tool. Getting the right web host is important too!

Ready to start? Check domain availability

www.
.com
  • .net
  • .org
  • .biz
  • .info
  • .us
  • .co
  • .mobi
 
 
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