Whether you are creating a business, a project, or a professional reputation, you need to find and purchase a domain name. It’s a great place to start because you should acquire the domain name whether you are ready to create a website or not. Registering a domain name is not expensive and registering it ASAP keeps you from discovering later that someone else beat you to the name you want.
If you are getting started with your career or working on a job search and don’t already own your name as a domain name, I recommend you snap it up ASAP. You don’t have to be ready to use it, but when you are ready you should:
- Use it for a more professional email address
- Create a simple website as your primary web presence
Social media sites like LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are great for networking and publicizing what you are doing. However, these platforms are subjected to changes and may not always be where you want to be found. Your website should create a centralized place to find links to your other profiles and it should highlight what you want to be known for – you brand. This may include your experience or content reflecting focus areas where you are growing.
Starting a Business
Start with doing a domain name search to see what domain names are available (ex: namecheap.com), but don’t stop there. Do Google searches to research what domain names other businesses or professionals are using. It’s much better to find out now if there’s a competing business using a similar name. Having to rebrand because your customers have a hard time finding you or because of a legal challenge from another company is expensive both in terms of the costs of the redesign, marketing the change and the unnecessary stress for you.
If you are just getting started as a solopreneur or startup founder, WordPress.com provides an easy way to create a professional website which can be easily migrated to a self-hosted WordPress website as needed. The paid levels include using your own domain name as your website address.
Keep your domain registration in a separate account from your web hosting service. It’s just a matter of time before you find yourself wanting to break up with your web hosting company and it’s much easier to do if you don’t have to also move your domain registration.