Wondering how to choose a domain name that is best for your blog? If so, let me answer this question. This article also includes the best domain name extensions along with 100% free domain names.
These days, starting a blog has become one of the most popular ways to learn, share, connect with others, and of course, make money online.
The first step to start a blog is finding a domain name for your blog.
A domain name isn’t just a name.
It is made of different parts that have a different meaning. A domain is usually made up of a subdomain, a second-level domain, and a top-level domain.
The top-level domain (TLD) is also sometimes called the domain extension.
In this article, we will look further at the parts of a domain name, the most popular domain extensions, and how to get a domain name for yourself.
What is a Domain Name?
A domain name is what users type in as the URL to access a website. These are the words used to identify a website. Every website has a unique domain name.
Let’s look at an example:
DigitalMillions.org – this is the domain name for this website.
As already mentioned, domain names are made up of 3 different parts:
- The subdomain
- Second-level domain
- Top-level domain
1. The Subdomain
The first part, “www” is the subdomain.
The subdomain is a division of your domain that can be used to create different sections of your website. For example, you could have a subdomain specifically for images that could look like this:
Unlike your second-level domain or top-level domain, you can create subdomains as you wish after you register your domain name.
2. Second-Level Domain
The middle part is called the second-level domain (SLD). This is the name you choose for your blog or website when you register your domain name.
Second-level domain is the name that your audience associates with your site.
For example, the SLD of this site is DigitalMillions as you can see:
Like your top-level domain, this part of your domain can’t be changed after you register it. So, do your research and choose a blog name that is best for you.
3. Top-Level Domain
This is the part at the end of your domain name.
It’s also called the domain name extension.
Top-level domains (TLDs) are generally divided into two categories, generic TLDs and country-specific TLDs. We will look at how to choose which is best for you.
For this website, ‘.org‘ is the domain extension or top-level domain.
And, here’s what you need to know:
Your domain name extension can’t be changed after you register unless you buy a domain name with a completely different extension.
Be sure what you want and pick the right one at the beginning.
What is the Best Domain Extension?
Now, you may be asking:
What will be the best domain extension for my blog or website?
Your domain name identifies your site with your readers. Having a professional domain name is important in establishing your brand.
Here’s what you should remember:
Unlike your subdomain, the domain extension stays with your site forever and it is unchangeable. If you want another domain extension, it is a completely different domain name which you must buy.
And, you know what?
In addition to being important for your audience, a good domain name can also help your site with SEO and rank better in search engines.
But, it’s not a strong ranking factor, I must say.
Although it’s not a strong ranking factor, search engines take your blog’s domain name into consideration. If a keyword is found in your domain name, the chances to rank better for relevant keywords improve in search engines.
Any more good news?
Yes! your domain extension can influence your search ranks for a specific country. If your TLD is relevant to a specific country, you will rank higher for searches in that country. However, you will not have as much ranking power on a global scale compared to generic TLDs.
Examples of country specific domain names:
- .in for India
- .ca for Canada
- .uk for United Kingdom
- .au for Australia
- .de for Germany
If you have a generic domain name extension and want to target a specific country, you can also tell Google this information in their search console.
There are other factors Google takes into consideration like:
- Your IP address
- Google my business information
- Backlinks to your pages
All this information and many other factors help Google determine which country your website belongs to.
What are the best and most popular TLDs?
Usually, you would want a generic domain extension for your blog such as the popular “.com” extension. This one is the most popular one.
However, there are a few more common ones you can consider if you need.
Let’s take a look:
- .com – Stands for “commercial.” This was its original intended meaning. But, it’s now the most popular TLD on the internet used for any kind of website.
- .net – Stands for “network.”
- .org – It mainly stands for “organization.” It was intended originally for organizations and non-profits.
- .co – It stands for “company.” This is becoming a popular alternative to the .com domain names. It is relatively new and because of this gives you more opportunity to get the domain name that you want.
- .gov – Stands for “government.” This TLD is only available for governments. It’s completely restricted to the general public.
For your blog, you’ll most likely want to use a .com domain. It’s the most recognized and popular domain extension in the eyes of most internet users.
Honestly speaking, you can take any domain extension that you want.
The most recommended TLDs are:
There are some other common domain extensions that have recently become very popular. If your domain name is not available, and the name is not used by an existing business, you could consider other domain extensions.
In most cases, you should try to find a .com domain.
If you don’t find it, try using:
Here are some other alternatives:
- .biz – Stands for “business.” Not as popular as .com, but this is an option for commercial businesses.
- .io – Technically, “.io” is a country-specific domain name. However, it is now being used for tech and software sites as it can stand for input/output. There is a higher possibility you can get the name you want because this domain extension has only recently started to get more popular.
- .info – Stands for “informational.”
- .xyz – It was made available on June 2, 2014, and has recently gained a lot of popularity as a generic domain name.
- .me – This domain extension is intended for personal sites.
If you are absolutely attached to a name that isn’t available as a .com domain, you can consider other domain extension options.
Your domain name is important in representing and establishing your brand. So you should choose a domain that will give you the most credibility.
Get a Domain Name FREE
And I have a good news for you.
With HostGator, you don’t only get solid web hosting, you also get a free domain name with a web hosting account ($2.75/month only).
If you already have a web hosting account and still need to get a domain name at a cheaper cost, go ahead and check out Namecheap.
Or you can use the following search box:
Find a domain starting at $0.88
powered by Namecheap
Type your domain name and hit enter. You’ll find the information regarding its availability with a list of similar domain names you may be interested in.
I like to use only top-level TLDs for my domain names. Most of my blogging sites are with either .com or .org extensions.
My Final Words
Take the time to choose the right domain for your blog.
Your visitors will use your domain name to access your blog, and in many cases, it will be the first thing they will notice.
Remember that the domain you choose also has SEO benefits.
If you want to target a specific country, consider a country-specific domain name extension. Otherwise, get a generic TLD like the popular .com can be used.
Your domain should be memorable and easy to identify.
A name that people can remember will be easier to type.