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How to Get A Free Domain Name

February 21, 2022
REIN

Web hosting is an online service that enables website developers to publish their websites on the internet. It requires a domain name to make the website relatable and reachable. In other words, web hosting is the place where all your website files live. When someone searches your domain name on a search engine, the browser will connect to the web hosting company's server and find out the corresponding IP address. This IP address contains the files of the searched website which is procured and shown to the user. A domain name, i.e., your website’s name can be registered through a domain registrar like Hostinger. It is also obtained for free through paid web hosting plans.

Now Before We Jump to How to Get a Free Domain Name, Let’s Understand What is A Domain?

First things first, how do you define the internet? It is a network of computers that are enabled to talk to each other. Communication is key and it is done through a network protocol called TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol). In this protocol, each system is assigned a particular numerical value called IP addresses (eg. 125.35.322.34). Now, since it is humanly not possible to remember these long strings of numericals for different sites, the concept of domain names was conceived. A domain name is the representation of an IP address. When a domain name is typed onto a search engine, the browser proceeds to communicate with a root domain name server (that acts like a dictionary) and provides the requested IP address.

How Do You Create A Domain Name?

A domain has two parts: top-level domain, abbreviated as TLD, and second-level domain, SLD. The SLD is the creative name given to the website to make it more relatable to the viewer. It could be the name of the purpose of the website. The TLD is the extension attached to the end of the SLD. For the domain name singular.com, the singular is the SLD and .com is the TLD.

3 Ways To Get A Free Domain Name

1. Free Domain With Web Hosting Plan:

  • A free domain with a web host plan is best for websites designed using WordPress.
  • A free .com can be availed.
  • It is legit and professional.
  • The site will be 100% secure.
  • It also has a free small business email.
  • Such providers are Dreamhost, Bluehost, GoDaddy, etc.

2. Free Domain With All-in-one Site Builder Plan:

  • A free domain with an all-in-one site builder plan is suitable for those building a site with a site builder. like Wix.
  • It provides free .com.
  • The site will be legit and have professionality.
  • Free small business email is also available.
  • Providers that have an all-in-one site builder are Wix, Squarespace, Weebly, etc.

3. Free Domain From A Domain Name Registrar:

  • A free domain from a domain registrar is advisable for personal use only.
  • Free .ml, .tk and .cf can be accessed.
  • It seems unprofessional and has no security.
  • There are no business emails.
  • DotTK, Freenom, and GetFreeDomain are some examples of such providers.

How To Get A Free Domain Name Using Bluehost?

Bluehost is a web hosting firm owned by the Endurance International Group. It collectively hosts around 2 million domains. The service offers a variety of hosting such as WordPress hosting, shared hosting, dedicated hosting, VPS hosting, and WooCommerce hosting. Along with that it also offers professional marketing services. The Bluehost servers are powered by NGINX+ caching, HTTP/2, and PHP 7. To create a domain name using Bluehost follow the steps given below.

  1. Create a Bluehost hosting account
  2. Login to your Bluehost account
  3. Click the "domains" tab
  4. Click the "register" sub-tab
  5. Enter the domain name you desire
  6. Click on the "check" button
  7. Click on the green cart button to add the domain to the cart
  8. Click the "next" button under the cart to the far right
  9. Click the "add to cart" option after reviewing the registration settings
  10. Fill in the payment details and checkout

There's yet another way to register a domain name in Bluehost. The steps preceding the first step are the same as above mentioned.

  1. Click on the "new domains search" box from the "domains" tab
  2. Enter the desired domain name and find the domain field
  3. Click on the "get started" button
  4. Click on the green cart button to add it to the cart
  5. Click on the "next" button on the far right under the cart
  6. Click on "add to cart" after the review of the registration settings
  7. Fill in the payment information and checkout

How To Get A Free Domain Name Using Hostinger?

Hostinger International LTD. is an employee-owned web hosting service and an internet domain registrar. It is also the parent company of 000Webhost, Weblink, and Niagahoster. Here are the simple steps to obtain a free domain name in Hostinger.

  1. Go to the website hostinger.com
  2. Select the "hosting" option
  3. Click on "shared hosting"
  4. Select the desired web hosting plan
  5. Choose the 12 months or more plan for availing free domains
  6. Create an account using email
  7. Choose your payment option
  8. Claim the free domain

Apart from "shared hosting" there are other options too like VPS hosting, cloud hosting, and Minecraft hosting. Since the shared hosting option is the most affordable one with the least bit of maintenance and security, it is advisable to go for that. If your website outgrows shared hosting which may happen when you want to add updated or interactive features then Hostinger allows you to seamlessly upgrade to a better hosting arrangement. While selecting the web hosting plan however you have to select the premium shared hosting plan or the business shared hosting plan since the single shared hosting plan which is the cheapest does not come with a free domain name feature. Let's look at all the features provided by the two shared hosting plans.

Features Of Premium Shared Hosting:

  1. Number of websites: Up to 100 websites can be created
  2. Storage: 100GB SSD
  3. Bandwidth: unlimited 
  4. Database: unlimited
  5. Number of email accounts: Up to 100 email accounts can be created
  6. Number of visits allowed: Up to 25,000 monthly visits approximately
  7. SSL: SSL certificate is free
  8. WordPress installation: WordPress is one click away to install

Features Of Business Shared Hosting:

  1. Number of websites: Create up to 100 websites
  2. Storage: 200 GB SSD
  3. Bandwidth: unlimited
  4. Database: unlimited
  5. Number of visits allowed: Up to 100,000 monthly visits approximately
  6. Number of email accounts: Up to 100 email accounts can be created
  7. WordPress feature: WordPress has a lightspeed cache
  8. Backup frequency: Daily backups
  9. CDN: CDN is free
  10. SSL: SSL certificate is also free

To obtain a free domain name, month-to-month plans must not be selected as Hostinger provides free domains only for yearly plans. The various free domain names in Hostinger are

  • .com
  • .online
  • .site
  • .webspace
  • .tech
  • .blog
  • .net
  • .org
  • .club
  • .us
  • .co
  • .biz
  • .info
  • .space
  • .store

Other Ways Of Getting A Free Domain Name

1. Free ccTLDs:

ccTLD stands for country code top-level domain. Free ccTLDs indicate that the users have to use a fixed TLD. This service is not recommended as they offer obscure TLDs like .cf (Central African Republic) or .tk (Tokelau). Some of the other country codes used are

  • .ml - Mali
  • .gq - Equatorial Guinea
  • .ga - Gabon

They look unprofessional and from an SEO point of view are a bit downsized. Moreover, malicious ads and adult content will make your website a nightmare.

2. Earn Domains Through Affiliates:

Certain domain registrars offer to earn domain names by referring the site to other customers. This becomes a hassle after some time.

3. Use A Free Subdomain:

Free website builders like WordPress provide a free subdomain name like yourwebsite.wordpress.com. A subdomain exists within a domain. This way of obtaining a free domain is also not advisable as it means that you do not have your own domain name but the subdomain holder is the actual owner of the site that you built. Also, it seems unprofessional and harder to remember. Customers would want to have short and easy to memorize names for websites they visit. The subdomain holder will also provide limited access to your website's growth.

4. Pay For Your Domain Name Through Adverts:

Few hosting and domain registration companies will let you have a free domain name in return for advertising their commodities on your website. However, Google frowns upon this system and you will fail to generate any income out of your website's viewers. You will not have any control over the ads shown or their placement. This will not only damage your SEO ranking but also hinder the experience of the users visiting your website. 

5. Pay For A Premium Site Builder Plan:

Website builders like Wix, Squarespace, or Zyro provide the option of creating a website on their site and obtaining their free subdomain. This may not be feasible to some as it negates the savings of a free domain. But if you require the enhanced features of the premium Wix or Zyro or the requirements of e-commerce then this can be a way. The base-level plan for Wix comes at 14 dollars per month whereas Squarespace comes at 12 dollars per month plus a bonus. For Zyro, however, you have to choose their unleashed plan which is their second cheapest option.

To Summarize

The bottom line is that if you want a free domain name then it is better to get it free with your hosting. There are ways to obtain an absolutely free domain through sketchy ccTLD services or by affiliating websites but a few hits in the pocket are necessary to not have a spammy website. The best opinion is to stick with the free domains obtained through paid hosting or obtain other paid alternatives.

FAQs: how to get a free domain name

1. What is a domain?

A domain is simply the address of a website. When a user types a domain name in the search bar then the particular website which was assigned that domain name will open. For instance, when you type the domain name www.amazon.com then you will be redirected to the Amazon page.

2. What is the difference between a website and a domain?

A domain is the name of the website you create whereas a URL is how you find a website. A website is a page that visitors interact with. To speak more simply, a domain is the name of your website that you have purchased or got for free from as service providers. A domain name will mean nothing but a URL until you create a website for that name.

3. What are good domain names?

A good domain name should have the following attributes,
  • Short
  • Memorable
  • Eye-catchy
  • Should not contain symbols like &, +, -, etc.
  • Ends with .com usually (because people are more used to writing .coms)
  • 4. Can I transfer my domain name to another registrar?

    The user can transfer his/her domain name to another registrar after 60 days of getting it for free or buying from a service provider. However, most service providers charge a fee to carry out this transfer.

    5. Is free domain good?

    Yes, free domain names can be a viable option for small businesses or startups that do not have exorbitant funding. The downside of having a free domain is that most service providers impose ads on your website which could be inappropriate to your website's visitors.

    6. How do I get a free email using my domain name?

    Most hosting plans offer a free domain with at least one free email account as well as a matching email address, i.e, name@yourdomain.com. Amongst the best service providers, Bluehost provides the best deal. It comes with an offer of five free business email accounts at just $2.95 per month.

    7. How can I get a free website?

    A free website can be obtained either using a site builder such as Weebly along with a subdomain and ads or by using an open-source content management system such as WordPress. A professional website developer will find WordPress as the best as it provides free service and the choice of connecting a custom domain with this party hosting.


    REIN

    REIN Digital is a leading global marketing and advertising firm focused on providing the best services and partnership. Our journey began in 2015 in Gurgaon, and since then we have been believing in putting in every ounce of effort in order to bridge the gap between our client's present and hopeful future. 

    Throughout these years, we have collaborated with businesses from India as well as other nationals including Australia & the USA.


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