How to choose and buy a domain name

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f you want to buy a domain name, you need to do it through a domain name registrar. These vary considerably in cost and the services they offer, so it pays to shop around. Be aware there are often different prices for the different top level domains (the .com, .org,, .me and .uk parts) so if you want to get the same name in multiple top level domains (for example, and you need to check the prices of each.

First of all, you will need to check if the domain name you want is available. You can’t get because we have bought it already. Most registrars have a simple form on their website where you can look to see if a particular domain is available, and they will also check other top level domains at the same time. If you’re not sure where to go, try the one at If you type into the ‘Search for your domain’ box and press Enter, it will show you a list of the ones which are taken and which you could buy. At the time of writing, you could register if you wanted to.

Note: You must make sure you type the domain name correctly! If you type you’ll find they are all available because it’s missing a letter. You should always be careful when typing in domain names, as some people register names with typing errors to get people who have made a mistake to visit their sites. This is called typo-squatting, and they often make sites that look like the real thing but the information you enter (address, bank account details, etc.) is going to the wrong people!

Once you have paid for and registered the domains, the registrar will set their DNS servers as the authoritative name servers for your domain. These are the servers that tell everybody else how the domain name (and any subdomains) relate to IP addresses. If you didn’t have authoritative name servers, anybody could publish details about your domain and claim they were correct.

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