How to register a domain name for your business

Discover the business benefits of domain names and how to register a unique address for your website.
· 21 May 2024 · 4 minute read

What is a domain name?

A domain name is the unique address of a website on the internet, allowing users to access it easily.

Domains consist of two main parts: the Top-Level Domain (TLD) and the Second-Level Domain (SLD).

Top-Level Domain (TLD)

The TLD is the part that comes after the dot. For example:

  • .com
  • .org
  • .net

Second-Level Domain (SLD)

The SLD is the part that comes before the dot. For example:

  • google
  • amazon

Domain names are important for search engine visibility. When people search for something on the internet, search engines will show results that are relevant to their search query. The domain name of your website can help search engines determine if your website is relevant to the search query.



Australian-specific domains

There are several domain options ending in .au. Each serves a different sector and purpose, and they have rules about who can register them.

Common domains ending in .au include:

  • for businesses with an ABN or ACN as registered through ASIC
  • is also for businesses with an ABN or ACN
  • for charities and non-profit organisations
  • .au is for anyone associated with Australia


Why is domain name registration important?

A domain name serves as your business's unique address on the internet, allowing customers to easily find and access your website. Registering a domain name is one of the fundamental steps in establishing and securing your online brand.

A recognisable domain name can help improve your marketing effectiveness and drive visitors to your website. Customers are more likely to engage with a business that has a recognisable and branded domain name. In fact, research by auDA, the administrator of Australia’s .au top level domain, found three of five Australian consumers choose .au websites when shopping online to support local Australian businesses.

Exclusive ownership and brand preservation

Registering a domain name gives you ownership of that specific web address. This prevents others from using the same domain name and potentially impersonating your business. By securing your domain name, you safeguard your brand's identity and protect it from unauthorised use.

Reflect your brand’s credibility

A custom domain name can lend a sense of professionalism and credibility to your business. It portrays a more established and trustworthy image compared to using a generic or free web address.

Improve your results on search engines

A well-chosen domain name can positively impact your website's search engine rankings. By incorporating relevant keywords in your domain name, you can increase your visibility in search results and attract organic traffic to your website.

Increase visibility and name recognition

A memorable and easy-to-find domain name makes it easier for customers to remember and access your website. This can lead to more traffic, brand recognition and potentially new customers.

Access professional email domains

Registering a domain name also allows you to create professional email addresses using your own domain. This can help you enhance your brand's image and provide a more consistent and memorable email communication channel.


How to choose an effective domain name

Choosing a domain name that resonates with your business's brand and objectives can help you build a strong online presence.

Below are some practical tips to help you select a domain name that aligns with your business goals:

  • Consider using your business name or a variation of it as your domain name
  • Include relevant keywords that describe your business or industry
  • Choose a domain name that’s catchy and unique, but also easy to remember and spell
  • Aim for a name between 5 and 15 characters long
  • Avoid generic or commonly used names
  • Conduct a trademark search to ensure that the domain name you choose does not infringe on existing trademarks
  • Ask for feedback from colleagues, friends or family on potential domain names.
  • Before finalising your domain name, check if it is available for registration. If your first choice is taken, consider adding prefixes or suffixes, or using alternative domain extensions (.net, .org, etc.).


How to register a domain name

Once you’ve thought of your chosen domain name, and checked it’s available, you’ll need to register it. Here's a step-by-step guide to help you secure your unique web address:


1. Before you begin

Before you can register a domain name, you must make sure you have the right information ready.

If you want to register a domain name, you need to be able to demonstrate that you’re an Australian business. You can use your ABN or other business registration. If you want to register a .au direct domain, you’ll need to prove you’re an Australian citizen or organisation.

Read "How to secure your .au direct domain name" to learn more


2. Choose a domain registrar

There are many different domain registrars to choose from, so it's important to do your research and choose one that is reputable and has a good track record.

Consider the following factors when choosing a domain registrar.


Domain registrars charge different prices for their services. It’s important to compare prices and choose a registrar that offers a competitive price. Registrars often have promotions with reduced prices for their services. Be sure to check the cost you’ll have to pay once the promotion period ends.

Customer support

If you have any problems with your domain name, or need assistance setting it up, you’ll need to contact your domain registrar for support. It’s important to choose a registrar that is responsive and has a good reputation.

Terms and conditions

It’s important to always read the terms and conditions of the domain registrar before you register a domain name.


3. Search for your desired domain name

Once you have chosen a domain registrar, you can search for your desired domain name. If the domain name is available, you can proceed to the next step.


4. Provide your personal and business information

You’ll need to provide your personal information, such as your name, address and phone number, to the domain registrar. You may also need to submit an ABN or ACN if you’re registering a or domain name.


5. Choose your registration period and pay for your registration

Registration terms start from a minimum of one year. A common registration period is two years, while some registrars offer up to 10 years.

Choose the term that works for you and pay the fee to complete your registration.


Remember to renew your domain name

It’s important to renew your domain name regularly to prevent expiration and loss of ownership. Most domain registrars will send you a reminder email before your domain name is set to expire. You can renew your domain name by logging into your account with the domain registrar and following the instructions. Some registrars allow you to enable the domain to be automatically renewed. If you select this option, also remember to keep your payment details current. If you don’t update your card details, you may lose your domain.


A strong domain name goes a long way

Registering a domain name is a small investment that offers big benefits for your business. It helps you establish a secure and exclusive online presence. And it increases the visibility, recognition and credibility of your business. By following the guidelines discussed in this article, you can reap the long-term rewards of a well-chosen and managed domain name.

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