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I haven’t registered a domain name yet but I purchased a web hosting package – What should I do?

I haven't registered a domain name yet but I purchased a web hosting package - What should I do?

I am not sure why anyone would do that. But even so, it you’ve gone ahead with it, start looking out for a domain name quickly. The priority should now be to book a domain name so you can start building the web site.

You can either purchase the domain name from the same company from whom you bought the web hosting or go to another company. It doesn’t matter (much!). My only advice is to choose a reliable company and not some fly-by-night operator who may shut shop in a few years.

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Here are some quick tips for booking a domain name:

  • Before purchasing a domain name, be sure that the company is reliable. You can read reviews online – just search for them on the web.
  • If the domain name is for your business make sure that you register a .com or (equivalent for your country) domain. Do not go in for .net or .org domains for a commercial venture. (I just find it dumb when a business web site has a .net or .org and trust me, I’ve seen those)
  • Do not fret if you cannot get a .com domain for your business. The .com was actually meant for all commercial organizations in the United States, but it became so popular that everyone around the world wanted dot-coms. You can use an equivalent option for your country. For example, if you are from the UK, look for availability of .co.uk domain names or if you’re from India, you can check out .co.in domain names.
  • In case of business web sites, ensure that your domain name enhances your company brand value. It is not necessary that you look only for domain names like www.yourcompany.com. A name such as www.yourbrand.com would also fit the bill quite nicely.
  • Though many would disagree, your domain name need not contain keywords. Some search engines do give a little importance to keywords in a domain name but this is on a very low scale. It would be better if your domain name reflects your company or its brand name.
  • Try to get a short domain name as it is easier for your visitors to remember. (unlike the domain name of this web site – but I cannot do anything about it now, the site has become quite popular you see).

Email from web hosting company confirming your order

Check the email you have received from the web hosting company thoroughly. It should have the following information which is sensitive and important so you need to store it safely. (Suggestion: take a printout and keep it under lock and key!)

  • Important: Username and password of your account at the web host.
  • Important: FTP information such as the FTP hostname, FTP username and FTP password. These details might be the same as above. If they are not supplied in the email, check the support or FAQ pages on the company web site. If you cannot find them there, contact the firm and get this information as soon as possible.
  • Important: The server I.P. address, Name Servers of that server etc.
  • Not very important: A temporary URL of your web hosting package. Some web hosting companies do not supply this information over email or do not offer this feature, in which case you can forget about it.
    [Johnny Depp in Donnie Brasco: “… and sometimes it just means forget about it”]
  • Important: URL to the control panel for your web hosting package through which you can create email accounts, add databases, etc.

Once you have purchased a domain name, you need to associate it with the name servers supplied. Come back to this web site (so book mark this page now!) and read – I bought a domain name before and have just procured web hosting – what do I do now?.

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