When you have been blogging for a long time and had to find your way through the intricacies of various blogging tools and related matters such as how to set up a blog in the first place, it’s easy to forget just how mysterious and confusing it all seemed at the beginning.

Getting the domain name you want

One of the most basic things, especially if you are going to self-host your blog, is to get the domain name or web address¬† you want. By “self-host” I mean you locate it on a web hosting service of your choice – unlike using a hosted service like Blogger.com or WordPress.com (different from WordPress.org).

I can sense another blog post coming up, about web/blog hosting services, but here I just want to focus on the nuts and bolts of:

  • checking to see if the domain name you want is available
  • when you find one you want and it is available, registering it.

So this is a Blogging 101 post (we all had to start somewhere and when you are starting out at anything isn’t it annoying when people assume you know certain things, even when there is no serious reason why you should? ).

I’ve made a little “guided tour” video as below, using the domain name hosting service, Namecheap. It’s nice that the service lives up to the brand name, although there may be others that will charge even less than Namecheap, at least for some domain configurations.¬† Namecheap is the main domain hosting service we use and we are happy with it which is why we recommend it. There is an affiliate program, which can help defray your domain hosting costs (link is in the footer of the Namecheap homepage).

Registering your domain name

The signup process is pretty straightforward, and hopefully the video illustrates the process sufficiently.

There is unfortunately a bit of a hum on the soundtrack, but if you turn your sound down and remember it is only a short video, I think you’ll find it bearable. Please let me know if it is not and I’ll look to finding time to make another and replace the one here.

My intention is to follow up with some related “setting up” posts, including one on getting your hosting service set up and one on installing a blog.

I welcome any questions about setting up domain names, using hosting services and installing blogs. I’ll do my best to answer helpfully.

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