Probably you are reading and learning about how websites work. You then may have run into terms like domain names. People are talking about domain names, domain extensions, domain flipping, domain purchase, and domain hosting. So you are wondering what a domain name actually is? Keep reading this post. Here you will clearly comprehend the domain name meaning and all the basics about it.
Domain Name Meaning
A domain name is a string of alphanumeric characters and the hyphen or dash (-) that refers to a personal computer, a server computer that hosts a website, or any other network on the internet.
The domain name of a website represents the numerical IP address of that website. Let us see why it is needed and how it works.
Each website or Internet Protocol resource has a unique domain name. This name is a substitute for the actual address of the website or source of information. That actual address is given by the network to the computer and consists of digits and periods. We call it internet protocol or IP address.
Obviously, it is difficult for us to remember those long strings of numbers to access dozens and even hundreds of websites that we visit every day. We are familiar with words made of characters. We love characters. On the other hand, computers are machines that recognize numbers. They love numbers. Their language is made of numbers.
To overcome this strain, we just assign unique, easy, and beautiful names (domain names) of our choice to our websites. This way we get free from dealing with those strings of numbers and periods. We do not need to remember the numbers. We use names of our choice for websites and access them, although computer networks can efficiently deal with numbers.
To have more insight into Domain Name Meaning and its Y? click on Why are there Domain Names
We then keep all the numerical addresses and their respective names that we have assigned to them in a central large database. A system of server computers (Domain Name System) has access to this database. When we have to visit a website, we just enter its name in our internet browser. The browser connects to the database of names and numerical addresses through the system. The system maps our entered name to its address and guides our device browser to the target website. This way we are free of that numbers hurdle. We are happy with our names. The machines are happy too.
Example of Domain Name
Every website address must contain the domain name of that website. Even the address of every piece of content on the internet, which is usually known as a URL (Universal Resource Locator), must have the domain name of the website.
www.google.com is a domain name that everyone in today’s world is aware of. There are many other such domain names that millions of people are familiar with and love them. Facebook.com, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and Amazon are some of them.
Parts of Domain Name
But what is the actual domain name in www.google.com? Is just “google” the domain name or “.com” a part of it? And what about the “www”? The domain name meaning will be unclear if we neglect these questions.
Well, in fact, these all are part of the domain name. These combine to form the domain name.
Types of Domain Names
The domain names are organized in a hierarchy of certain levels.
Top Level Domains
The Top Level Domains (usually known as TLDs) are the fundamental part of the domain name that tells us about the category, field, department, or country to which the website relates and focuses. You can spot a top-level domain to the right of the website name in the complete domain name with a period or dot in between. For example, in the domain name of this website cyberstir.com the .com is the top level domain name that follows to the right of the website name cyberstir. Top level domains are also called domain extensions. You may read more about top level domains and other types of domain names in our Ultimate Crazy Guide to Types of Domain Names.
Second Level Domains
A Second Level Domain is the basic name of the website. In a domain name, it precedes the top level domain. It is the name that the website owner thinks about and chooses from a list of alternative choices available.
Third Level Domains
In www.google.com the “www” is the third level domain. It represents a subcategory of the website and is thereby often called a subdomain. The website builder may create multiple subdomains for his website. Each subdomain works as an independent website in itself.
Importance of Domain Names
Domain names are a beautiful & useful alternative to long IP addresses that consist of numbers and periods. So far this is the only point we learned about the domain names. But a domain name is more than just a technical shortcut substitute for a cluster of numbers.
Here are some of the major points that highlight the importance of domain names:
(You may skip this section but if you skim through it, you will surely enhance your understanding of domain name meaning)
- A domain name gives an identity to a person, business, company, organization, or any other entity on the internet.
- Having a domain name, your business looks smarter and in pace with the modern “digital world”.
- Domain names provide credibility to a business.
- As compared to other online platforms like social media sites, a unique domain name helps in establishing authority.
- A beautiful, stylish yet catchy domain name may attract traffic like a magnet.
- A good and easy domain has long-lasting effects. People will definitely remember it and come back to it again and again.
- A domain name builds brand awareness for your business.
- With a domain name, you will have full control over your content and your presentation.
- A carefully selected domain name may also help in search engine optimization.
How to get a domain name
Now after realizing the domain name meaning you may ask how one gets a domain name.
The International Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is a non-profit organization that oversees the operation and procedures of the domain name system. You may register a domain name with one of the several hundred Domain Name brokers or resellers. The resellers are connected with the brokers while the brokers are registered with one of the thirteen registries accredited by ICANN.
Although all these come under the supervision of ICANN, they are free to decide the prices of domain names with different TLDs. That is why one should be careful when going to register a domain name for his website. If you want to read about the basic essential terms related to domain names, have a look at the complete guide on Domain Names Explained for Newbies