25Feb, 2014

What is a Domain Name

According to Wikipedia “A domain name is an identification string that defines a realm of administrative autonomy, authority or control on the Internet. In layman speak, a domain is an internet address that you own to define you or your organization. For example, http://www.kcbbankgroup.com is a name that takes you to the KCB Bank Group website.
A domain name can be compared to a business name on the website and there fore before we look at the domain name in detail let us look at a business name. A business name can be descriptive e.g. Jims Green Grocery which would probably be a green grocery owned by Jim. A business name can also be non-descriptive without any apparently clear meaning. For example LG. The advantage of a descriptive name is that the public can determine your line of business from its name.  The disadvantage is that when you want to change the business line or its area of operation, you may have to change the name also.  A non descriptive name has the advantage of allowing you to brand it any way you like. It also allows you maintain a wide variety of interests in different markets under the same name.
Back to the domain name. Just like a business name, a domain name will be designed similar to the  business or organization represented.  In this manner KCB Banking Group will select a domain that is as similar as possible to their KCB Brand.  The choice of suffix to use depends on the type of image an organization or individual would like to portray to the world.

The .com domain which is the most widely used denotes a commercial enterprise and is the most expensive type of domain name to get.

The .org domain is used by non governmental organizations churches  and united nations organizations.

The .edu domain is used by educational institutions.

There are also country domains e.g . .ke which is the Kenya  country domain.  Previously the suffixes were limited to three letters but the body overseeing the internet has already allowed the use of longer names in the suffix. E.g. .Africa . Just like a business name, a domain can speak volumes about an organization or individual and hence think carefully about the image you want to portray before choosing  a domain name and its suffix.

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