What Is A Domain Name?

Learn About Domain Names

A domain name is a unique address which identifies a collection of web pages that the public can access. The collection of web pages make up what we generally call a web site.

The domain name can consist of a combination words, letters and/or dashes. For example, eBusinessDomains.com is the domain name, while the homepage is just one of the pages that make up the website for www.eBusinessDomains.com.

Domain names are unique. There is only one eBusinessDomains.com. A Domain name identifies a web site and allow users to get to it without having to know the technical details of it’s IP address.

Simply put, a domain name is like your home address. By giving a street address, city and postcode, your home address can be easily located. Imagine if you had to give the exact longitude and latitude instead.

Components of a Domain Name

Each domain name has at least 2 components. There is the second-level domain and the top-level domain (TLD). With the domain name eBusinessDomains.com, “eBusinessDomains” is the second-level domain, while “.com” is the top-level domain.

We can choose/create any second-level domain that we wish, but we have a limited number of top-level domains to choose from. We can only register/buy a combination of second-level domain and top-level domain if that combination (referred to as the domain name) is not yet taken.

Valid Top-Level Domains

A top-level domain (TLD) is the last part of a domain name; that is, the letters that follow the final dot of any domain name.

The management of most top-level domains is delegated to responsible parties or organizations by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).

Some of the major top-level domains are listed below.

.COM – used for commercial purposes. This is an open TLD; any person or entity is permitted to register.

.NET – used by network service providers. This is an open TLD; any person or entity is permitted to register.

.ORG – used by organizations and non-profit entities. This is an open TLD; any person or entity is permitted to register.

.BIZ – commonly used by businesses. This is an open TLD; any person or entity is permitted to register.

.INFO – used by information related sites. This is an open TLD; any person or entity is permitted to register.

.GOV – used only by governmental entities. This TLD is not open to everyone.

.Mobi – this is used by mobile devices, and should be used for mobile compatible websites.

There are many other TLDs which are used by a variety of entities. The ones listed above are the most commonly used.

Country TLDs

Almost every country has got their own TLD. This can be quite useful in identifying where the website originated fro or its target audience and/or market.

Here is a list of some of the popular Country TLDs:

.CO.UK – United Kingdom
.US – United States of America
.DE – Germany
.AU – Australia
.EU – European Union
.CA – Canada
.CN – China
.FR – France
.IT – Italy
.NZ – New Zealand
.RU – Russia
.JP – Japan
.IN – India

Note: You can learn more about domain names by reading the additional domain tutorials listed on the right (sidebar) under the heading: Learn About Domain Names.


Article written by Kevin Jackson, founder of eBusinessDomains.com.
You can read more articles on the domain blog.