Do You Need Your Own Domain Name?

2002-10-21 by Mark Bove

Importance Of Image - Possibly the most important element of your eBiz is its image or brand. A domain name is the key to your branding strategy. The ultimate goal for any eBiz large or small is to create a memorable brand name such as Yahoo, Amazon.com, or eToys. Even if you are setting your eBiz sights lower than these internet giants, a credible internet presence requires having your own domain name.

What Are The Alternatives? - You could host your eBiz on free web site space provided by your internet service provider or on free web site space provided by internet companies such as Geocities. Instead of your site being named "TulsaRealEstate.com," your site would be given a domain name something like home.earthlink.net/member/~tulsareal/.
Sure your domain name wouldn't cost you a penny, but it would also make it much harder for you to attract customers or to instill enough credibility with them to entice them to do business with you.

Economics Of Owning A Domain - A domain name costs on average $2.91/month. To host the name, you'll also usually need to go with a commercial hosting company which will charge about $20/month. (Although one free hosting company, BigStep, allows you to have your own domain name.) So in practical terms, getting your own domain will cost about $23/month. But it will also probably at least triple your potential business. Don't you think it's at least three times more likely that a customer will find, remember, and trust a business named "TulsaRealEstate.com" over "home.earthlink.net/member/~tulsareal/." They will.
So unless you only plan for your eBiz to drum up less than $10 a month, you must get your own domain name. It will pay off exponentially.

Other Benefits - Even if your eBiz goes belly up, your domain name is a potential asset. You may be able to sell your domain name for a substantial profit sometime down the road.

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