A domain name is the physical address to a website. Domain names can be an extension of your business, and your domain represents your business online, so be careful. You can buy your domain name to start your own website. You can also get the domain name free and avoid paying the yearly registration fee. Getting a free domain name will enable you to save money while establishing your online presence. Here are some of the ways in which you can get a free domain name for your website.
Sign up for hosting with a free domain name
Some hosting companies offer their clients free domain name registration for every year they stay with the company. This means that as long as you pay your monthly hosting bill, the company will continue offering you free domain name registration year after year.
Get a Free-Sub domain name
If you are not ready to spend some money on hosting, you can use free hosting service and get a free sub-domain name. A sub domain name works just like domains. However, instead of the normal style of www.yourdomain.com, your free domain name will read as www.yourdomain.hostcompany.com. You can sample some of the companies that offer this service and select one that best suits you.
Earn a free domain name
You can also earn a free domain name using a referral service. There are a few programs that you can take part in. Such programs require you to complete a few offers and refer your friends to do the same. These programs work by awarding you points towards a free domain name for completing certain offers. The more points you earn, the better your chances of winning free domains.
The problem of domain name squatting
You need to be careful when looking for domain names. Some free domain names are not real and if you are not careful you can easily fall victim to domain name squatting. Domain name squatting is a practice whereby a person lays claim to another person’s Internet address with an aim of making a profit. You can detect domain squatting by checking the domain name. If the name belongs to a famous company, person or product, you need to be very careful. Also, if the domain name gets an “under construction” or “can’t find server” message, cybersquatting might be the issue.
You are entitled to protection against domain name squatting. If you realize that someone has registered a domain name that bears your name or company name and then offers to sell the name to you, the law gives you a chance to take legal action against such a person. This is referred to as bad faith intent to profit. Bad faith intent to profit can also happen when a person uses your trademark to divert traffic to another site. The law restricts other people from using a domain name that is substantially and confusingly similar to your name. Penalties for cyber squatting are similar to trademark infringement penalties. The law can either restrain the squatter from using the domain name, cancel the trademark or transfer it to the owner of the trademark.
Image credit: CC by Grey Hargreaves