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Domain registration is more like a lease than a purchase. You are renting second level domain (the mycompany bit) from Verisign for a specific amount of time normally between 1 and 10 years at a time. Most of organizations that allow you to register a second level domain charge a fee for each year that you register domain for. With almost all domain names you are also given option to renew your registration (lease) when it is close to running out (expiring).
Once you have registered a second level domain you are free to create as many third level domains (sometimes called sub domains) as you like. In our previous example www is a sub domain of itxcel.com
Most of registries that manage these top level domain names do not allow individuals or businesses to register domains directly with them. To register a domain you need to use a company like itXcel. We act as a registrar and send all required information and registration fee to registry. Registrars are useful as they hide differences that exist in each of registries from customer and provide a simple step by step process for registering a domain. A registrar also allows you to manage and track all your domains from one place rather than having to deal with a different company for each top level domain.
OK so I know what a domain name is, Why do need one? Can you image what a nightmare it would be if you had an email address like firstname.lastname@example.org or a web site address http://126.96.36.199/. These addresses are possible but not very easy to remember. Now if you register a domain name you could create an email address like email@example.com and a web site address like http://mycompany.com These are much easier to remember and look 100 times more professional.
One of important points about registering a domain is that once done you have an exclusive right to use that domain for as long as you keep domain registered in your name. If you do not renew a domain at end of it's registration period it will again become available for registration by someone else. For this reason even if you don't want or need a web site at moment, it's still a good idea to register a domain as soon as possible. Just imagine if your competition registered domain name of your company or product. Although there is a process in place to retrieve these domain it can be long and complicated. It is definitely simpler to spend a little money up front to secure your chosen domain names.
To find out what domains are available and to quickly and cheaply register them visit http://www.itxcel.com now and enter your desired name in domain search box.
Ewan Bain is the general manager at itXcel Internet Limited - Based in the UK itXcel provide Internet services, including domain name registration and web site hosting to small to medium sized businesses and home users. For more information visit Our Website.