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What is a Domain? Simple Way to Understand it

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    A domain is an address or name that identifies a website or computer so that it can be more easily accessed by users. For websites, domain names usually end with an extension such as .com or .net.

    Without this name, you have to type a series of numbers called an IP address in the browser's address field every time you visit a website. Of course this will be very troublesome, because there are millions of websites in the world with different IP addresses.

    So, in this article, we will explain everything about domains, including the meaning of domains, their functions, types, as well as how to register and transfer them. Come on, just scroll down! Don't forget to read it to the end, okay?


    What are Domains and Examples?


    What are Domains and Examples

    In short, a domain name is the address you need to use to open and access a website. The parable is like this: the website you have is a house. Well, a web hosting service is the land where you build your house, while the domain is the address that people can use to get to your house.

    So, you could say that the domain is one of the main components of a website. A domain name consists of two main elements, namely the site name and the extension. For example, Facebook.com contains the site name (Facebook) and extension (.com).

    In short, a domain is a unique name which is the address of a website or the address that takes users to the destination website. Basically, a domain is a simple form of IP address that contains a complex combination of numbers. With so many websites available, of course memorizing these number combinations is annoying, don't you agree? This is what domains are for.

    Domain name registration is managed by an organization called ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers). ICANN determines the available extensions and has a centralized database containing domain name redirection information.

    It cannot be denied that .com is the most popular domain. However, there are still several other domains that you need to know. Here, Glints provides several examples of domains and a brief explanation for you.

    .com: domain used for commercial purposes.
    .id: domain which is the identity of the Indonesian state.
    .net: domain used by institutions or companies operating in the IT sector.
    .edu: domain used by educational institutions.
    .gov: domain used by government institutions.
    .org: domain used for organizational purposes.
    .info: domain used for informational websites.
    .biz: domain used for business purposes.
    .name: domain generally used for personal purposes.
    .travel: domain used for tourism purposes.
    .tv: domain used for entertainment purposes.


    What is the Difference between Domain and Web Hosting?


    If you are still not very familiar with the world of websites, then the terms domain and hosting might be a little confusing for you. A domain is an address created to represent a website, while hosting is the place where all the files the website needs are stored. 

    Without a clear domain address, you will have difficulty finding the website you are aiming for. Therefore, choosing a domain that is easy and attractive is highly recommended.

    Here's an easy parable:

    Hosting is like the land where you build a house (website) on the internet. Meanwhile, the domain is your home address. People can visit your website in a web browser via the domain, and the website can load in the browser thanks to web hosting. Without hosting, you will not be able to get your website online.

    How does the Domain System Work?


    When you enter a domain name in a search engine, the browser will send a request to the global server network that forms the domain name system, namely the Domain Name System. Then, computers on the global network will look for the location of the website you entered.

    Servers in DNS have different names depending on the company that manages them. Therefore, servers in DNS are also called nameservers. Now, after the browser has successfully found the location of the website you are looking for, the server will send back data to be displayed to you.

    What is the Domain Function?


    What is the Domain Function

    Each website is actually represented by a series of numbers (IP addresses) which the computer will later use to retrieve data from the server, because computing systems work by understanding numbers. It will definitely be very troublesome if you have to remember each of these numbers when accessing a website, especially since this series of numbers is always different for each website.

    For example, we will use the domain name hostinger.co.id. Let's say our IP address is 100.90.80.70. This IP address points to a server that stores website data.

    Then, the computer uses these numbers to go to the server and request website data, then presents it to you in the browser. Just imagine, it would really be a headache if you had to remember every IP address of the website you want to visit.

    In conclusion, the use of a domain is to make it easier for visitors to access the website they want to open via a web browser, simply by typing in the address without having to memorize the website's IP address.

    Finding a domain name is also difficult, because only a website can have one set of names and extensions.

    Domains can also take advantage of redirects or redirects that help you determine whether visitors who open your site will be automatically directed to another website. This method is very useful for campaigns and microsites, or for directing visitors to a special landing page on your main site.

    The redirection option will also help avoid typing errors. For example, when you mistype the Facebook URL by writing www.fb.com, you will still be redirected to www.facebook.com thanks to this option.

    What is the Difference between Domain and URL?


    Even though they are similar, there are some differences in domains and URLs (Universal Resource Locator). A URL is a complete web address that can direct visitors to a specific page on the site. Well, the domain name is part of the URL.

    URL consists of protocol, domain, and path (path). The protocol shows whether the website has an SSL certificate. A URL will only have a path if it directs visitors to a specific page of a website.

    Then, there is also FQDN, or Fully Qualified Domain Name (fully qualified domain name). FQDN is the full version of a domain name, which also consists of a hostname.


    What are the Top 3 Domains?


    What are the Top 3 Domains

    Not all names follow the same formula and rules. Even though the .com domain is the most popular, with usage reaching around 46.5% of all websites in the world, there are still others you can choose from, such as the .online and .store domains.

    The following are the most widely used domain types:

    1. TLD: Top Level Domain


    As the name suggests, Top Level Domain or TLD is the top level name in the Domain Name System (DNS) on the Internet. There are thousands of TLDs that you can use, and the most popular include .com, .org, .net, and .edu.

    The official TLD list is maintained by an organization called the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) and you can see it here. IANA notes that the TLD list also includes ccTLDs and gTLDs, which we will discuss below.

    2. ccTLD: Country Code Top Level Domain


    ccTLD only uses two letters based on international country codes, for example .us for the United States, .jp for Japan, and .id for Indonesia.

    Usually ccTLD users are companies that create special sites for certain regions, and can show visitors that the site they are visiting is valid for its purpose.

    3. gTLD: Generic Top Level Domain


    Basically, Generic Top Level Domains are TLDs that do not use country codes. Most gTLDs have specific uses, for example .edu for educational (educational) institution websites.

    Well, you don't have to meet certain requirements to register a gTLD, such as .com which is not always for commercial websites.

    Other examples of gTLDs are .mil (military), .gov (government), .org (nonprofits and organizations), and .net which were originally created for internet service providers (ISPs), but now you can use them in any field.

    4. Other Name Types


    At this point, you already know what a domain is and some of its types. Next we will introduce other name variations that you can use:

    a. Second Level Domains


    This name is right after the TLD. Don't worry, we won't use explanations that are too technical because it will be easier to use examples, especially those related to country codes.

    An example of this type is .co.uk which is used by several company websites in the UK. Or, .gov.uk for British government institutions, and .ac.uk for academic institutions and universities in the kingdom.

    b. Subdomains


    With subdomains, webmasters don't have to buy additional names if they want to add shares to their site. They simply create a subdomain that can be directed to a specific directory on the server.

    Subdomains can be the best option for campaign sites and other types of web content that should be separate from the main page or site.

    For example, Facebook uses developers.facebook.com to provide certain information to web developers and app developers who want to take advantage of Facebook's API. Another example is support.google.com.

    c. Free domains


    There are also free names that you can get from various website builders such as WordPress.com, Squarespace, Weebly, and so on.

    This type is similar to a subdomain because it uses the website name in your personal domain. Examples are businessbooks.wordpress.com or businessbooks.squarespace.com, which means the names come from WordPress and Squarespace.

    However, this type is not suitable for long-term business or if you want to have unique branding. It would be much better if you had your own name.

    What is the Domain Name System (DNS)?


    What is the Domain Name System (DNS)

    Domains are only a small part of a larger network called the Domain Name System or usually shortened to DNS. DNS is managed by an organization called the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) which was mentioned at the beginning.

    ICANN is responsible for the ongoing maintenance and management of DNS, creating policies, and regulating domain registrars.

    According to Make a Website Hub, DNS is a large network of servers located in various regions around the world. These servers contain a distributed IP address database, then transfer domains to IP addresses.

    With DNS you can direct your domain to the IP server you want via the DNS settings in the domain panel where you bought or registered the domain.

    How do I just Register a Domain Name?


    Each provider uses a different system, and the domain registration process will depend on the provider you use. For more details, please read how to buy a domain.

    To register it, you must first check its availability in the domain search feature. Most providers allow you to type or enter the desired name to check availability. If you want to buy a domain directly, you only need to click Add to Cart, then complete payment.

    After purchasing and registering it, you will get access to a managing control panel that has all the management tools you need.


    How do you Transfer a Domain?


    You can also transfer this name from one registrar to another. However, you must fulfill the following conditions so that the domain transfer can be carried out without problems:

    • It has been 60 days or more since the last transfer or registration.
    • The domain must not be in Redemption or Pending Delete status.
    • You must have an authorization code (or EPP code).
    • Ownership information must be valid, and privacy protection services must be turned off.

    Although this transfer process is not mandatory, it will be much easier for you if you use the same service.

    How do I Choose a Domain Name for my Website?


    How do I choose a domain name for my website


    Some of you definitely want a domain name that is easy to remember and not complicated so that it can be easily found by many people.

    However, it should be noted that currently there are lots of registered domains so you have to come up with unique and different domain ideas. Here are some tips from Erzedka for choosing a domain name:

    • use the .com domain so it's easy to remember
    • make sure the domain name is unique and short
    • do not use numbers or hyphens
    • Try to make the name easy to pronounce and spell


    Conclusion


    Finished! From this tutorial, you now know what a domain is, its function and the various types. Apart from that, you have also learned how to transfer and how to register.

    As discussed earlier, a domain is the name for a website that functions like the Contacts application on a smartphone. Domain displays the contact name for each phone number, so users don't have to bother remembering complicated numbers.

    Here's a summary to help you remember:

    • A domain is a name that functions like a home address (website).
    • This name consists of the website name (e.g. Hostinger) and extension (e.g. .co.id).
    • All registrations are managed by ICANN.
    • The function of a domain is to direct visitors to the right server when accessing a website.
    • The most popular extension for domains is .com, used by 46.5% of websites in the world.
    • ccTLDs use country codes and refer to geographic areas (for example, .cn or .es).
    • gTLDs are extensions for specific purposes (for example, .org for organizations).
    • Each registrar offers a different domain registration process.
    • You can use the special search feature to find out the availability of the name you want.
    • Domains can be transferred from one provider to another.

    If you still have questions, don't hesitate to write them in the comments column below!

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