When you are ready to design a website one of the first questions to think about is the name for the website. The name of a website should be short, easy to spell and rememberable.

The process of purchasing a domain name can be cheap, and it can involve an annual fee. Most of the time that I buy a domain, I only spend a dollar or two, but that is just the cost for the first year. Subsequent years are about 16 dollars per year. There are a few options in order to qualify for the cheaper rate:

My Opinions

I think that it makes sense for people to own their own domain, and to allow clients to eventually take their website and their domain and move it somewhere else I see that as the best option for most people. But it’s a bit of a difficult process and it doesn’t take me more than about 5 minutes to buy a domain and point it to one of my web hosting servers. Here are two options, and I strongly reccomend Option #1.

Option #1

The ability for me to make a new Gmail address for a client, and to share that new email account with the client. For example, if I had a client named greengardens.com and Tom was my client, if Toms existing email account was tom@greengardens.com it would be hard for me to be able to do the work of setting up the website without being in the email folder for the client. Most people sure do NOT want to share email accounts and I don’t want to share the real email account. But setting up a new email account like greengardens2020@gmail.com and using that email for the setup of the domain makes a lot of sense to me. That way, we can setup greengardens2020@gmail.com to automatically forward to our tech support email as well as forwarding in gmail from greengardens2020@gmail.com to tom@greengardens.com it allows us to both get emails without having to always login to yet another email account.

Using this option to purchase a domain name using that gmail address makes a lot of sense to me. That way we can be sure to setup a website with off-site backups (to google drive) and it’s easy to hand off that new email greengardens2020@gmail.com to the client if and when they want to move to a different developer or webhost. I know that people want to be able to have that option, to take their website and move to a different developer or web hosting company.

I like this method, and it is easy to make a new email account to forward to MY account, and the clients primary email. That way we can both see messages that come into the website and I can test things on the website that require the email features like testing the ‘Contact Us’ form to make sure that it works correctly.

I think that keeping the websites admin user based off of a new shared email makes sense because changing it requires that it be confirmed via email and I think that it’s too easy for clients to ignore technical emails like warnings that I might need to look at.

Option #2

A quick zoom meeting where I help you to purchase the domain name and set it up using your existing email account. The process of purchasing a domain isn’t that difficult but I can find my way through godaddy or IONOS in about 5 minutes and most users would take about 30 minutes to setup DNS to point to one of my servers.

This option is a bit ugly to implement because it doesn’t allow me to share an email account with the client and can make it difficult for me to test parts of the website to make sure that they work correctly.

I think that testing things like the login process and the ability to reset passwords and the ability to test the contact form for a website is an absolute must. The contact form is easy to setup, but once we start adding additional plugins that extend that basic function it really has to be tested periodically.