In simple terms, it’s a website’s address. A domain name is the name that identifies a website. For example, “” is the domain name of the Pedleyonline website.
Domain names are usually comprised of three parts, separated by dots in between – the “www”, the chosen name, then the suffix or extension that reflects the purpose or physical location of your website. When you type in a domain name, it is usually in this format or similar:
A domain name or web address locates an organisation or a person on the internet using the web address. It’s like a sign post that points out your location on a map.

Domain names have to be unique so if your preferred domain name is already taken you may have to think of an alternative. There are also restrictions on the number of characters in a domain name – maximum 67 characters.

Choosing a domain name with a extension (a country-specific domain for the UK) tells people that they’re dealing with a local/UK based entity and is therefore possibly the best option if your business caters for the local community.

If your business would benefit from an international audience then it may be better to get the domain you really want even if it has a different extension. Be aware however that getting your chosen domain but opting for a .ie extension (Irish) may mislead people into believing you only cater for those based in Ireland.

.org and .net are quite acceptable however many people associate a domain name with a .org as being linked to a non-profit making organisation.

There is some argument for choosing a .com domain name in that it could be considered as being more favourable to search engines and where the domain is entered without the relevant extension that a .com may be assumed by the search engine. Our advice would be to consider who your audience is when choosing your domain and maybe secure the .com and the and/or alternative domains if available.

If you have just one domain and it’s anything other than the most common (assuming you’re UK based and appealing to a UK local audience) then be sure to always refer to and promote your web site and business using the full domain name form.

It’s all a matter of opinion but here’s our two pence worth!

Keep it short – if it’s too long people will find it harder to remember and also there’s more chance of them mis-typing it

Name your site/business after its domain name, for the simple reason that when people think of your website, they’ll think of it by name. If your name is also your URL, they’ll automatically know where to go. For example, when people think of Pedleyonline, they don’t have to wonder what URL to type into their browser to get there because the name of the site is also the URL.

Hyphens – Should you get a hyphenated name? Disadvantages – people may forgot about the hyphens and end up at your competitor’s website. Relaying a web address which contains hyphens verbally can be difficult and there may be a tendency to forget to mention the hyphens which again could send traffic to your competitors. Advantages – search engines may distinguish your keywords better meaning your site may be listed more prominently in search results for those keywords occurring in your domain name. Using hyphens may make it possible for you to secure the domain name you really want if the un-hyphenated version is already taken.
Our honest opinion is to steer clear of the hyphens.

Plurals and other forms (such as,,, For plurals the ‘s’ is so easily missed off that we feel the plural forms are best avoided. If you decide on an alternate form, such as then be sure to always refer to and promote your website and business using the full domain name form.

There’s lots more to consider when choosing a domain name. We’re always happy to advise you or we can suggest potential domain names for you. We’ll help you make the right choice and we’ll secure the domain name on your behalf.

Please Contact Us for more assistance with domain names.

Pedleyonline can not only provide advice on potential domain names for your website, but we can also check availability for any domain names you have in mind, and/or we can buy the domain name on your behalf. If we buy the domain name for you it will technically be registered to us (though paid for and owned by you) We can change the registration of the domain name to you shortly after purchase upon request.

We hope to have long-lasting and happy relationships with all of our customers however if you do decide to move on we’ll release the domain to you immediately upon request. Regrettably, as there is an element of administration in either re-registering or releasing a domain name to you we have to make a small charge for providing this service.

The alternative is to purchase your domain name yourself. Domain names are available from many web domain registrars on the internet. You’ll first need to check the availability of your desired web domain name with them. If it’s available you can usually secure it there and then online using various payment methods though you’ll possibly have to register an account with them first.

The cost of purchasing a domain name will vary depending on where you purchase it from and the domain name extension. At Pedleyonline we charge £48.00 for each domain name and £65.00 for each .com domain name (subject to change). Domain names are valid for two years at which point they are renewable.

Once secured you will own your domain name for 2 years only. At this point, you will have the option to renew at the current rates.

If you purchased your domain name through Pedleyonline you can relax and leave renewal of your domain name to us. We’ll contact you about your domain name renewal and if you choose to renew we’ll organise it all for you and send you our invoice.

If you purchased your own domain name then in most cases your supplier should contact you directly about renewal.

If you no longer need your domain name you can simply allow it to expire. Please be aware that if you allow your domain name ownership to expire that it may be difficult or not possible to secure it again. If you intend to allow your domain name ownership to expire please Contact Us to discuss the future of your website and web marketing requirements.

Yes, we can help you to choose and buy a suitable domain name.

Buy your domain name as soon as possible and ideally before you start your website or business.

Visit The Pedley Guide for a step-by-step guide to getting a website.

Oh dear! Someone beat you to it! How committed are you to that particular name? Is there an alternative?

It is possible to try and buy the domain name from the current owner. You can try contacting them to see if they will consider selling it to you however they’ll most likely want to charge a higher fee than usual. If you’re just starting out, try the cheaper and easier alternative of obtaining a domain name first and then naming your website or business after the domain that you’ve acquired.

If you’ve already got your domain name then you can simply point it to your new website. Again, we’ll be happy to help with this.

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