The first thing you need to do before setting up your WordPress site is to register your domain name and secure the server space (web hosting) which is needed to host your site.
WordPress offers both a “hosted” or self-hosted” option for setting up a WordPress site or blog. We strongly recommend that you consider choosing the “self-hosted” option, which gives you total control of your web presence, from a unique domain name.
Do you need more clarity on the “hosted” vs. “self-hosted” options with WordPress? We explain the differences in more detail in this tutorial.
We do not recommend hosting your WordPress site or blog on any domain that you do not own or control.
Here’s the reason why …
If you are not growing and promoting your own domain name, then you are growing and promoting somebody else’s asset!
So … the first step BEFORE installing WordPress is to register your own domain name and purchase hosting
Useful Tips For Registering A Great Domain Name
Choosing a great domain name is not always a simple or straightforward process. You can spend a lot of time brainstorming and thinking of a good name, only to find out that the domain name you really want is already taken.
Here are some tips on how to choose a great domain name:
1. .Com! Generally speaking, the best domain extension to get is a .COM. It is the most recognizable and popular of all the domain extensions and most people will automatically type the .COM version when they are searching for a website.
Even if you are in another country, you will still want to try and get the .com vs. the country specific domain, to keep your potential audience global vs. regional.
2. Shorter is better. The shorter your domain name is, the better. A shorter domain name is easier to remember and print on stationery, signage, etc.
Having said this, keep in mind that its getting harder and harder to find great domain names that are also short in length. They are out there, you just have to get creative and search a little longer.
3. Make it easy to spell. Avoid domain names that are difficult or tricky to spell. You should also avoid “clever” variations which can end up being confusing to your online users.
When you have a really good idea for a domain name, and then find out it is already taken, you may be tempted to try and be clever, to find something similar and yet available. For example, doma1n.com (substituting the letter “i” with the number “1″), or domayn.com are probably available, but for good reason as they are going to be challenging for users to remember.
For this same reason try to avoid using numbers like “4″ as a substitute of “for” (e.g. Work4Yourself.com) and “2″ as a substitute of “to”, as you will then find yourself continually having to tell people that it’s “4″ not “for”. Similarly, avoid things like “u” for “you”, etc.
You should also try to avoid domain names where adjoining words both end and begin with the same letters – e.g. sweettreats.com. Sweet Treats is a good sounding domain name, but the double T’s look funny, and can easily lead to misspellings and confusion. For the same reason we recommend you avoid trying to merge two identical letters in a name into one, like; goodatinguide.com or sweetreats.com.
4. Using Hyphenated Words. If the domain name you want is taken, you may be tempted to register the same domain with hyphens between words. Hyphens aren’t horrible in domain names, but If possible, I suggest picking the version without hyphens, as this will make your domain name shorter and less prone to typing mistakes by online users.
If you do choose to register a domain name with hyphens, we suggest adding a hyphen between every word of your domain, e.g. my-business-website.com, instead of mybusiness-website.com or my-businesswebsite.com.
5. Using keywords. Choosing a keyword-rich domain name that specifically targets your business, niche or main website topic can be beneficial for search engine optimization purposes, contextual advertising, etc …
Avoid using too many keywords in your domain or limiting your domain name to a very narrow niche. You want to avoid using a domain name that is too long or that looks spammy.
Ideally, you should aim for a domain that has 1 keyword phrase between 2-3 words. Anything longer than this is called a long-tailed keyword and can significantly narrow your appeal from a “niche” market to a “subniche” audience.
Tip: If you’re going to register a long-tailed keyword domain, then make sure there are enough people searching for that keyword. See this tutorial on how to find and register available keyword-rich domain names.
6. Location. Consider including your city, state or region in your domain name if you’re a local business. For example, SydneyRoofRepairs.com, GreenValleyPlumbing.com, etc … Or you may wish to exclude this information from your domain name deliberately if you want to expand your reach to a more national or global audience.
7. Branding. Try to make your domain name as simple and memorable as possible.
8. Singular vs. Plural. If possible and if it makes sense to do so, get both versions. e.g. AJCleaningService.com and AJCleaningServices.com.
9. Avoid trademarks. It’s a bad idea to try and build a business online using a domain that contains someone else’s trademark (e.g. GoogleSEOExperts.com). You are only asking for trouble with online advertising companies (e.g. Google AdWords) and potential lawsuits later on – especially if your business starts to attract greater visibility online!
If your business is built around another company’s products or services, try to find a generic term that will not infringe on the trademark or cause issues with copyright and intellectual property!
Note: This also includes using “WordPress” in your domains. If you plan to offer WordPress-related services, use “wp” in the domain instead of the word “wordpress”, e.g. www.WPtrainingguide.com.
10. Change your business name. This may sound like an absurd suggestion, but if you haven’t registered your business name yet and you discover that the domain name for the business you’re planning to start is already taken, then it may be worthwhile to consider changing your business name to match your domain name to keep your branding consistent.
How To Register Your Domain Name and Obtain Web Hosting
If you haven’t registered your domain name, yet… It’s simple, start by going to the Swell Host Domain Name Registration Page By Clicking Here Find the available domain names you want to purchase and add them to your cart. If you plan on building a WordPress site with the help of our tutorials, be sure to order web hosting with your domain name purchase , as well.
After you complete the purchase of your domain name(s) and web hosting, your ready for step 2!