Domain Research

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Domain Research FAQ

What is domain research?

Domain research involves the search for domain information in relation to ownership, registrant name and phone number, email address, and more. Research involving domain information can be done for the purpose of determining who owns a particular domain or whether the domain is available for purchase.

Domain research can be accomplished by individuals or by a consulting company that specializes in finding information regarding a domain. When the sought-after domain is owned by someone else but not currently in use, a domain research firm will find the owner or registrant for the purpose of making an offer to buy the domain.

Can you buy a domain permanently?

While domain names can be purchased for no more than 10 years at a time, you can purchase a domain for life. It’s important to understand what the term “for life” means.

Most domain renewals are done either annually or every two years. If the prospect of renewing your domain name each year is unpleasant, you can set up a recurring payment method with the company you handle your renewal through. This way, as long as the credit card is valid, the domain name registration and payment will be done automatically for as long as you wish.

What are the two types of domain?

There are three types of web domains available for different types of organizations. The first type of domain is a top-level domain, or TLD. Top-level domains sit at the top of the internet hierarchy. In other words, these domains are the primary domain designations most people see when they find websites after surfing the internet.

Top-level domains usually have the following designations: .com, .info, .edu, .org, .gov, or .net. Each one typically indicates the type of website associated with the domain. For example, .com is usually associated with a commercial enterprise or a general information site. Sites that use .org for their domains are often nonprofit or volunteer organizations. Schools and universities will usually use the .edu designation.

The second type of domain are second-level domains. These are below the TDL in terms of hierarchy and use more-specific designations. Examples include .co.uk, indicating companies in the United Kingdom, and .gov.au, indicating government agencies located in Australia.

How do I research my domain name?

Researching an effective domain name is important for any company or organization. Domain research can generally be done by using two methods. You can conduct the research yourself or hire a domain research services firm.

If doing the research yourself, you can leverage Google Adwords keyword tool to see which terms have high search volumes with low competition. If one of the keywords can be used as your domain name, you can be on your way to incorporating a great domain name.

If one of your domain name choices is already taken after doing a general search on hosting services such as GoDaddy or Wix, you can select the WHOIS option to identify the owner or registrant. If available, you may be able to contact them and make a deal to purchase the domain from them.

Another do-it-yourself domain research option is to conduct a U.S. trademark search. This type of search can help you determine whether your domain name has already been trademarked.

An alternative to doing your own domain research is to hire a firm that specializes in domain research. There are a variety of professionals and small firms offering domain research services via platforms such as Upwork. Based on your name, budget, and timeframe, you’re likely to find a capable resource who can help you find just the right domain name for your enterprise.