Website 101, Understanding the Lingo: Domain Name and Registrar
What's a domain name?
A domain name is simply the name of your website. Just like the site your on: martechcollaborative.com. In order to have a website, you need to have your domain name registered with a registrar. We'll cover that below.
Domain names and domain extensions
You'll notice in a domain, there's a few sections. Take www.martechcollaborative.com as an example.
- martechcollaborative is the domain name
- .com is the domain extention (others could be .org, .gov, .net, .tv, .info, or even country extensions like .co, .as, .eu, etc.). There are many extensions available.
- www. is the subdomain. www is the most popular subdomain used in most websites default domain. But others can be used to identify subsections of a website such as blog.martechcollaborative.com or mail.google.com.
As you can see above, a domain name is just a string of letters and/or numbers. But that's not the actual address of your website. Every website has an IP address which is a string of numbers that identifies the location of the website. Your registrar is like a phone book. When someone types in the name of your domain and hits enter, their browser goes to a registrar to translate the name they typed in into an actual IP address. Think of this like when you type in a friends name into your smart phone to call or text. You see their name on your screen, but your phone is translating that name into their actual phone number to send that message to.
When you register your domain with a registrar, you'll have to complete a list of info that is kept on file as "WhoIs" data. This is required for every registered domain to know who is registering a domain and what their contact info is. Every domain name has a publicly accessible record that includes the owner’s personal information such as owner name, contact number, mailing address, and domain registration as well as expiry date. You'll also have to complete some technical info that your website host will provide to give to your register so that they can set your domain to point to the server where you website is hosted.
Confused yet? It's a lot, but that why we're here. We can help! Whether you need some questions answered and a resource to make sure you're on the right path, or if you want a partner to take the lead, we're here to help.