I get a lot of questions about domain names and web hosting from folks – often those who are either looking to buy a new domain, or they are unhappy with their current setup. I decided post these quick tips and links1 since I keep finding myself sending them via email.
- Buy your domain on your own. Don’t have someone else (such as a web host) register the domain. By registering the domain on your own, you ensure that you are the owner of the domain.
- Use a domain registrar that’s recommended by people you trust. I use Namecheap – they offer competitive pricing, a nice, clean administration interface, and solid service. I’ve used other registrars in the past and have moved almost everything over to Namecheap. Highly recommended.
- Use a .com, .org, or .net address for your site. There are other options, and I’d say that .me is acceptable for a personal site, but I suspect I’m not the only one who discounts things like .info and .biz.
- Decide whether you want cheap shared hosting or whether you want to pay a bit more for something more solid and reliable. If you’re fine with a shared web host, I would suggest Bluehost. If you’d like something a bit more solid, based on my experiences I’d recommend InMotion Hosting – my VPS there has been very good to me.
- Create a reminder for yourself (using your calendar or task management system of choice) to renew your domain a month before it expires. That’s early enough such that if you procrastinate for a week, it’s not a big deal. It’s even early enough that if you decide you want to change registrars, you can do that without running into restrictions that exist around transferring domains right at the time of renewal.
If you have related questions… please leave a comment and I will do my best to offer an answer.
Links in this article are affiliate links, which means if you sign up for these services, I’ll get a small commission. But I’m not recommending these companies for a kickback – I’m recommending them because they are solid