What Is A Domain Name?

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Simply put, the domain name is the address you type into the address bar of a website browser to get to a website.

The domain name for Google, for instance, is https:/www.google.com

For this page, the domain name is https:/www.websitebuilderexpert.com

A domain name is (just like a fingerprint) exclusive to your website and cannot be shared between different websites.

Are domain names and websites separate things?

Think of a domain name as your phone number and a website on your phone. They are separate objects, though they are related.

At any time, you can change your phone (website) and retain your current phone number (domain name) and simply link it to your new phone (new website).

Or you can switch your phone number (domain name) to another phone service provider (registrar of the domain name) and keep it connected to your current phone (your website).

Here’s a simple illustration:

  • I can buy a new domain name (let's say www.brandnewdomain.com) and link it to the website you're currently on. There will not be any update to all the content on this platform. But, instead of www.websitebuilderexpert.com, the website will have a new domain name, www.brandnewdomainname.com.
  • I will build a brand-new website elsewhere, detach this website from www.websitebuilderexpert.com, and reconnect it to the new website that I have created elsewhere. So, you will be taken to the new website when you type in the web address.

The secret is that any particular website is not permanently trapped with your domain name. You can detach it from any other website you like and reconnect it to it. But bear in mind that only one single website at a time can be linked to the domain name.

Free vs Paid Domain Names

You can get free domain names from different website builders that you use, such as Wordpress.com, Wix, Squarespace, Weebly, and so on.

"These website builders send you a" sub-domain "to be more precise. So, if we were to use our website name again as an example, something like a sub-domain would look like:

    websitebuilderexpert.wordpress.com

    websitebuilderexpert.wix.com

    websitebuilderexpert.weebly.com

Especially if you want to create a long-term company with your own unique branding, a free sub-domain name is not always good.

For these two essential purposes, you might stop using free sub-domains:

  • You don’t own the sub-domain. Although it can be used openly, you don't own it. The sub-domain name owns the website builder. The domain is not portable if you ever wish to move to another provider of services.
  • An extension of the service provider's own domain is a sub-domain. It will have the service provider's name at the end of the domain name. For instance, our web address would be websitebuilderexpert.weebly.com rather than websitebuilderexpert.com if we use Weebly.

That's why I always suggest investing a couple of pounds to get a proper domain that you totally own. It will also help your branding.

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