Many of today’s web hosting plans give you a free domain (at least for the first year) when you sign up. You may or may not want to tie your domain name to your web hosting company. See my prior post on keeping your domain and hosting separate for more info. If you’d prefer to keep your domain or domains housed at a different location from your web host, there are plenty of domain registrars who provide this service.
I personally like to use Go Daddy for many of my domains. They are the largest domain registrar out there and frequently have some great discount sales. Once you purchase your domains at Go Daddy, it’s very easy to set them up to work with your other web hosting provider. Here’s a quick look at how to set your nameservers at Go Daddy.
When you sign up for a web hosting plan with a certain company, you’ll be given your information including the nameservers (the computers where your site actually resides). This is the data you need to specify in Go Daddy so your domain will point to the correct server computers.
After logging in to Go Daddy, go to the All Products menu and select My Account.
On your account page, click to launch the Domains Control Center.
On the left side, locate your Domain Information and your Nameservers section underneath. Click on the Set Nameservers link.
When the Set Nameservers dialog box appears, select “I have specific nameservers for my domains” (if it isn’t already selected). Then, enter your two server names in the Nameserver 1 and Nameserver 2 boxes. Click OK and you’re set to go—it might take up to 48 hours for the changes to take effect. I’ve never had to wait that long though.
While getting a free domain with your hosting can save you some money, keeping your domains separate and managing them from another source like Go Daddy also has its advantages and is very easy to do.