Selecting a Domain Name
After the domain name is registered, the site needs a hosting plan so that it
can reside on a server and thus become available to the public. All of this
needs to be done before you can publish the site. Most people like to regis-
ter the domain and get a hosting plan at the start of any new Web project to
ensure that the domain name is secure during the site-building process.
And, because building a site takes a good bit of time, most folks also like to
have a customized placeholder page designed and uploaded to the domain
until the new Web site is ready for publishing.
If you are working as a freelance Web designer, some of your Web clients
will have already registered their domain and secured a hosting plan before
contacting you about your design services. Other new clients, however,
will not have done any of these things and will need a fair amount of hand-
holding from you as you take them through each of the steps. Being able to
provide information about these topics to your clients can both enrich your
skills as a Web professional and enhance their experience with you as a
designer. This fact alone can be very good for business because happy
clients are more likely to return to you for Web site maintenance services
after their site gets published, as well as refer other friends and business
acquaintances to you if they feel confident in all your Web-related skills.
If this is your first time dealing with domain names and hosting plans, you
may want to try setting up a domain name and hosting plan for your own
Web site before handling these tasks for any Web clients.
Selecting a Domain Name
Choosing a domain name for a Web site is something that you, in your role
as a designer, may or may not be involved in when working with Web
clients, depending on their individual needs and how Web-savvy they are.
Some Web clients will have already selected a domain, registered it, and
secured hosting, whereas others will say they don’t really understand any-
thing about all that stuff and are relying on your experience to help them
figure it all out, or in some cases do it all for them because they don’t care
to know. Some clients, of course, will fall somewhere in between these
extremes, needing a little help with some but not all of these domain-related
In the following sections, you find out more about domain names, how to
help select a domain name for your client, and then how to check to make
sure the name is available.
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