One of the first things any good business owner today should do is secure their website address, or domain. There are companies out there that spend their time buying up domain names in order to charge a hefty fee to companies to get them later. To prevent this, be sure to buy your domain as quickly as possible. A domain shouldn’t cost more than $12.00 a year. If it does, choose a different company that hosts domains.

When you are ready to buy your domain, you have a couple decisions to make. First, a domain is made up of the name and the extension. The extension is what comes after the “.”. So in has a “.com” extension. Some companies have chosen a .net extension or a .co. If you try to purchase a domain that has already been purchased by someone else, the company will most likely give you a selection of options instead with different extensions.

Most people today are web-savvy enough to know how domains work. They will often guess at a web address vs. looking it up and will always guess .com. It is important to consider that when determining your domain. You also want to consider how hard it is to say over the phone or in a networking situation. If your company name is, “Doors, Pots, Tables, Stuff and Fluff”, getting the domain would make things very difficult for you as it is difficult to hear the difference between a D, a P and a T, or an S and an F. Consider carefully how you will communicate your domain and your email address once the domain has been procured.

Owning your domain means you have the address. Much like buying an address for a new house you want to build. There is nothing there – you have just secured the rights to build at that address. You also need to consider where you will Host the website. Hosting is where your website files actually live. There are many companies that will provide both domain and website hosting. If you do a search for the “best companies for hosting”, you will get a list of the top companies and what they charge. See a list of hosting companies here.

When you set up your website, you should also be sure you can have email addresses with the matching address. A branded email, or email that reflects your company or product name, shows the business world you are a serious business and intend to be professional.

You will need to decide the “scheme” you will use for email as well. You can choose to have addresses be,, etc. Mapping this out early makes it easy to add others later on.