A domain name is the entry point to your website and you simply can’t have a professional-looking website without a domain name of your own. The domain name that you select could be with you for a long time and changing domain names isn’t something that should be done regularly…
Therefore, it is worth taking some time to choose a memorable domain that represents your business ethos and that correctly considers the technical implications of a given domain extension. In this chapter, we will explain how domain names work so you can make an educated decision on this important first step.
The Anatomy of a Domain Name
Generally, a domain name is broken into three main parts which are logically split from right to left.
We can dissect www.bowlerhat.co.uk as [www.][bowlerhat][.co.uk] :
A label known as a subdomain & a subdivision of bowlerhat.co.uk
This is the label or domain itself & is a subdivision of .co.uk
This is the domain extension
Choosing a Domain Extension
The first thing to consider is the domain extension (.co.uk, .com). Let’s have a quick look at the domain name extensions available and what they actually stand for. This will provide you with the knowledge to select the domain extension most relevant for your business.
The list is not exhaustive but covers the usual suspects:
.eu domain extension for the European Union
.co.uk commercial UK
.com commercial, usually USA but also used for worldwide commerce
.me domain extension for Montenegro & also used for individuals
.mobi use for mobile devices & services
.info purely informational sites & resources
.biz for business use
.uk.com commercial UK
.net generic extension, for worldwide sites
.uk.net generic, UK
.org.uk UK organisations
.me.uk UK individuals
.tel a global contacts directory
.name individuals and named services
So, as you can see, there are a few options. Generally speaking, if you are to going be running a business in the UK then the .co.uk is the one to go for. You can back this up with the .com as well but it is not necessary to do so. The uk.com,.biz and.eu are also used but if possible you are well advised to stick with the .co.uk or .com as they are the most commonly recognised of all domain extensions for UK businesses.