Did you know there are over 359.8 million domain name registrations worldwide?

The most-used top-level domain (TLD) is .com, with 46% of global websites using it, followed by .org, with a modest 4.5% market share:


If you are starting out on a website and have recently come across this term but don’t know what it means, this guide is for you.

We’ll cover everything you need to know about domain names—from what they are to how they work—so that you can make the right choice. Let’s go!

What is a Domain Name?

First things first, a domain name is a string of text that contains an alphanumeric IP address. This IP address is used by your customers to view your website, email services, etc. on the internet. To make it easier for viewers to remember, every IP address is assigned a human-readable label.

Naturally, this label should be as unique as your website/product/service in question.

Let’s put it another way:

When a user is looking for your website on the internet, they’ll have to type in a URL, right? This URL that the user types within the internet browser bar is referred to as the domain name of your website.

But why did domain names come into existence?

Here’s why:

The internet comprises a large inter-connected network of computers via cable. Each computer communicates with each other.

Now, to identify each computer, an IP address is assigned to it.

Think of it as a series of numbers that look something like this:

As you can imagine, an IP address like this is difficult to remember for obvious reasons.

Enter Domain names.

Every time you wish to browse your favorite website, all you need to do is type the name of the website instead of this long string of numbers.

This is why, the easier the domain name is to remember, the higher chances of customers visiting it. For example, crazydomains.com.

What Are the Different Parts of a Domain Name?

A domain name comprises of two parts:

  • Second-level domain (SLD): In the example of crazydomains.com, “crazydomains” is the SLD. It refers to the part that comes after www and should be within 63 characters. The shorter the SLD, the higher its memorability.
  • Top-level domain (TLD): In the same example, “.com” is the TLD. It is also known as the domain extension or domain suffix.

Different Types of Domains You Should Know About

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), a non-profit organization, oversees every aspect of the domain name system (DNS), such as:

  • Assigning and maintaining a database of domain names and IP addresses
  • Controlling registries that make domain extensions
  • Running accreditation systems

ICANN recognizes two types of domains:

1. Generic Top-Level Domain (gTLD): 

These are the most common types of domain extensions that signify your website’s primary purpose. A few examples include:

  • .com: Used for commercial entities
  • .org: Generally used by non-profit organizations
  • .net: Intended for network infrastructure
  • .edu: Used by educational websites

Over the years, ICANN has introduced hundreds of new gTLDs, such as .app, .blog, .shop, .design, and many more, making space for greater creativity and specificity in domain names.

2. Country-Code Top-Level Domain (ccTLD): 

These indicate where a website is registered or where a brand conducts business. A few examples include:

  • .us for the United States
  • .uk for the United Kingdom
  • .ie for Ireland
  • .au for Australia
  • .sg for Singapore
  • .in for India

And so on.

Pro tip: You can use gTLDs and ccTLDs together and get domain extensions such as .com.au, .co.in.

Why Should You Use a Domain Name?

Using a domain name is important for multiple reasons:

  • Brand-building:

    A domain name allows you to express your brand identity and engage in strategic brand-building.

  • Online presence:

    A domain name enables you to build a solid online presence so that your customers can easily find—and search for—you in Google as well as other common search engines.

  • Memorability:

    We saw how complex an IP address can be. A domain name is connected to your website’s numerical IP address, making it easy for people to remember your website. If we were to make a comparison, a domain name can be likened to your home address.
    Instead of using your home’s GPS coordinates, a visitor would simply type in your street address to reach you. Similarly, instead of typing in the numbers, visitors can type the easy-to-remember name and get to your website quickly.

  • Credibility:

    Having your own domain name adds credibility (and visibility) to your business. It shows you are serious about your online presence and are willing to invest in it.
    Remember, customers are more likely to trust a brand with a professional-looking domain name as compared to one that uses a free domain or a subdomain, which can often look spammy.

  • Increased control:

    When you own your domain name, you have full control over it. You can choose where your website is hosted, how it looks, and what content is displayed. This gives you the flexibility to change hosting providers or redesign your website without changing your domain name.

  • SEO-friendliness:

    Using a domain name that reflects your business (and its offerings) can help improve your website’s search engine rankings. Many search engines like Google take into account the domain names when deciding the relevance of a website to a user’s search query. A relevant domain name can help your website rank higher in search results.

Domains vs Uniform Resource Locator (URL) – Is There a Difference?

People use URLs and domains interchangeably. However, there are a few differences between the two:

Aspect Domains  Uniform Resource Locators
1. Definition
  • Serve as a human-readable address for your website
  • A string of characters that specifies the location of every item/resource located on the internet
2. Format
  • Consists of a unique name followed by a domain extension (for example, .com, .org, etc.)
  • It is way more descriptive than a domain as it consists of the following for a specific resource:
    • Protocol: Communicates how the browser requests access to a specific resource (for example, http, https)
    • Subdomain: Optional component of a domain name, which creates a separate section of your website (for example, blog.yourwebsite.com)
    • Domain name: Includes the TLD and SLD
    • Path: Begins with a forward slash, comes after TLD,  is case sensitive, and defines the specific location or resource within the website (for example, https://www.crazydomains.sg/domain-names/renew/)
3. Example
  • Google.com
4. Usage
  • Used in web addresses, email addresses, and other online identifiers
  • Used in web browsers to access specific web pages
5. Relationship
  • Is a part of a URL
  • Comprises the domain name and helps redirect users to unique assets on a website

But How Do Domain Names Work?

Let’s set some context first.

As you may have understood by now, every website is made up of a unique, complex string of numbers and letters (also known as an IP address). Computers use this IP address to locate and communicate with each other over the internet.

However, here’s the catch: Remembering these complex IP addresses is impractical. This is where domain names come in.

They allow us to get to a specific website using a combination of familiar words, letters, and numbers.

Here’s how this process works:

  • Step 1: You type the domain name/URL of the website you wish to visit.
  • Step 2: Your web browser will look for the website’s address in the domain name system (DNS).
  • Step 3: If a DNS server cannot find the domain name in its records, the request is forwarded to the next DNS server in the chain. This process continues until the domain name is found.
  • Step 4: The DNS server responds with the website’s IP address to your web browser.
  • Step 5: Your browser retrieves the data about the site from the server hosting the domain.
  • Step 6: The received data is processed and displayed on the web page.

How to Buy the Domain Name?

Once you’ve narrowed in on the ideal domain name for your website, follow these steps:

  • Step 1: Head over to a domain provider like Crazy Domains. Look up the brand’s search function to choose a domain that’s right for you and is readily available. With Crazy Domains, you can also backorder your first choice, especially if the expiry date is close. Alternatively, you can conduct a WhoIs search to find the date when a registration expires.
  • Step 2: Enquire about the registration fee for your domain name of choice.
  • Step 3: Create an account with the domain provider.
  • Step 4: Enquire about the registration plans, pay for the plan of choice, and enquire about the domain name duration.
  • Step 5: Consult the team about add-on services such as SSL certificates, website builder, hosting, etc., if needed.

6 Tips on How to Select the Right Domain Name

Take the guesswork out of choosing the right domain name with these six expert-approved tips:

Tip 1: Think How Your Customers Will Feel on Hearing It

When choosing a domain name, ask yourself: “How will customers feel when they hear it?”

Will they be excited, happy, joyful, or curious?

For example, headspace.com brings about a sense of calm and peace as soon as one hears it:


Tip 2: Does Your Domain Name Instantly Communicate About Your Product/Service?

Ideally, your domain name should encapsulate what you’re selling.

For instance, a domain name like oatly.com immediately informs the viewer of the brand’s main product – oats:


This domain name clearly communicates what the brand is all about and is oh-so-simple to remember!

Tip 3: Include the Right SEO Terms/Keywords (If Applicable)

If it makes sense, use keywords within your domain name to help search engines understand what your website is about. If you add high-quality content and a stellar user experience to the mix, your website can climb the rankings ladder.

One such example is Backlinko.com:

Backlinko is an SEO training and blog company that helps brands build their SEO strategy using link-building, on-page SEO tactics, off-page SEO, and more.

Using the term “link” within the domain name gives the brand a clear and direct association with link-building. This makes it more memorable and appealing to those who want to leverage SEO strategies for their website:


Get creative and use the right mix of words to get the ideal name.

For example, leverage this formula: [one brand name] + [one SEO keyword] = [ideal domain name].

Tip 4: Use a Relevant, Short, and Brandable Domain Name

When it comes to acing the domain name, Fairprice.com.sg gets many things right:


  1. The name “FairPrice” is short and contextual in that it talks about the store’s key USP: fair pricing. As a thumb rule, keep your domain name under 15 characters.
  2. The domain name extension is .com, which gathers instant trust from customers. You can also go for .co or .net as suitable alternatives.
  3. It highlights the location of the website, .sg (meaning Singapore).

This concise, apt, and short domain name is difficult to forget or ignore.

Tip 5: Make a List of Don’ts—And Stick to It

We’ve spoken at length about the Dos, but what about the Don’ts? Save this handy checklist:

  • Do not use slang terms such as u (as opposed to “you), r (as opposed to “are), and so on, as ToysRUs demonstrates below:


Yes, this is a well-established brand, but there is something off about using slang like “r”—it makes the brand look unprofessional or, worse, spammy.

  • Do not use words with complex spellings, meanings, or lengths like the one shown below:


The domain name is too long with unrelated words, making it challenging to remember.

Tip 6: Get Creative and Experiment a Little

When it comes to domain names, the world is your oyster.

You can choose a domain name to help people get into the right “mindset,” as LoveBonito does:


It literally wraps the brand’s essence around love and beauty, helping the customer build an instant emotional connection with the brand. This approach sets the tone for a positive customer user experience and enables them to relate to the brand without much effort.

Bonus: Domain Naming Best-Practices to Follow

Aside from the tips mentioned above, you should follow these industry best practices:

  • Avoid combining words and numbers like f00t-massage.com as it can confuse your prospects
  • Stay away from double letters, such as artoffriend.com, which makes it difficult to type the brand name and remember it
  • Use a number with your brand name as forever21.com does, only if it’s logical
  • Try for a .com domain name, which has a 70.84% market share, followed by .net (5.73%) and .org (4.82):


  • If your domain name permits, you can suffix it with .city, .country, .co, .store, .shop, and so on.
  • If you’re falling short of ideas, use a free domain name generator and plug in relevant SEO terms to get your hands on a killer name.
  • Look up the domain name availability on the WHOIS lookup tool to see information on who owns the domain and for how long.
  • Do your homework before committing to a specific domain name by searching for it on social media, conducting a Google search, and running a trademark search on the trademark database.

What Happens If My Domain Name is Already Taken?

On the off chance that your domain name is already taken, you can:

  • Try purchasing it from the owner for an attractive deal.
  • Go for a little variation and brainstorm new options for the original domain name.
  • Opt for a different top level domain altogether, like .biz, .shop, .site, .live, .me, etc.
  • Avoid the following TLDs with the worst reputation:


Take Time to Think About Your Domain Name, It’s Worth the Effort

There you go. By now, you know that your domain name is so much more than your URL—it’s your brand’s identity for all practical purposes.

So don’t rush this decision. Your domain name is a key asset in your online presence, which should never be treated as an afterthought.

And while narrowing down on an accurate domain name may not happen overnight, Crazy Domains makes the process of searching for—and registering—domain names easier.

Whether you want domain name advice from a dedicated team of experts or want to register for a particular name, Crazy Domains is here to help you get started.

Connect with the team to get started and use a domain name that gives you a competitive edge.


1. What are a few useful rules to remember for domain names?

When it comes to domain naming conventions, follow these rules:

  • Do not place two hyphens together
  • Ensure hyphens do not appear at the third and fourth positions of the name
  • Ensure there are no spaces or special characters (read: $, !, &, _, and more)
  • The ideal character length for your domain name should be between 3 (minimum) to 63 (maximum) character

2. What mistakes to avoid when selecting a domain name?

Here are some of the most common mistakes to avoid when choosing a domain name:

  • Don’t use numbers, abbreviations, or hyphens, as people misspell things all the time
  • Do not choose trademarked domain names; always check for domain name availability with a reputed service provider
  • Do not use words that are difficult to spell and, by extension, remember
  • Do not use homophones
  • Do not choose a domain that is very long
  • Cross-check to see if a .com/.net equivalent exists
  • Do your homework on the domain registration history

3. Is it possible to register a domain name without a website?

Yes. You can register a domain name without a website if you want to use it for future purposes or wish to protect your brand.

4. Is getting a domain name necessary?

Absolutely. Having a domain name:

  • Cements your professional online presence
  • Helps customers easily find and remember your website
  • Adds credibility and visibility to your online business
  • Allows you to create a strong brand identity
  • Gives you control over your website’s hosting and content
  • Helps improve your search engine rankings

5. How to find out who owns a domain name?

Use the Crazy Domains search tool to look for your chosen custom domain name and check its availability within seconds.

6. Which is the best domain name for a business?

A .com domain extension is the safest, universally recognized option out there. Other options include .org, .co, .net, .edu, and so on. That said, get a domain name that aligns with your brand’s product/service and is short as well as easy to remember.

7. Do I need to register a domain name?

Yes. You can only use a domain name under your name if it is registered in the first place. Also, remember that you cannot purchase a domain name forever. You need to keep renewing it.

Generally speaking, you can use a domain name for a period of 1-10 years, depending on your registration plan and the rules of the domain name service provider. Whether you want to use a domain name for your website, email, or any other web service, registering it is essential.

8. What are the cons of using a domain name?

The limitations of using a domain name include:

  • Higher costs associated with registering and renewing a new or existing domain name, particularly from competitors
  • Risks of domain name hijacking and cybersquatting if it is not properly protected
  • Ensuring that the domain name is relevant and memorable for your visitors

9. Is it possible to have two websites under one domain name?

No. You can only map one website to one domain name at a given point in time. However, different domains can point to the same website.

Also, note that if you purchase a domain name of your own, it is possible to add multiple subdomains you want and have them redirected to different websites.

10. How long does domain registration take?

Typically speaking, domain registration should happen instantly. In most cases, you’ll receive a confirmation email from the domain name service provider once all the formalities are complete.

If you have any queries or suggestions feel free to send an email on [email protected]