To buy a domain name? Or is a Subdomain from WordPress.com enough?

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For your own website you need one Domain, either you buy a domain name or you use a subdomain offered for free, for example from WordPress.com or Blogger.com. For a subdomain, your website will be named yourcompany.wordpress.com.
So you better invest in a "real" domain name?

What is a domain?

In order to present your business in the best light online or to start a blog, it is best to buy your own website.
Every website has a domain, better known as URL (Uniform Resource Locator). Under the domain you can be reached, it is like an address on the internet and therefore very important.
Behind it is the address of the server on which the contents of the website are stored, this is in a number queue.
A website can be called by either the IP address or enter the domain name in the address bar of the browser. For example, you can enter "www.google.com" for Google "173.194.70.94" as most people do.
The IP address is enough to call a website, but you can not easily remember the many numbers. For this reason, you need a domain that consists of words and is therefore easier to remember.

The three parts of a domain

A domain is divided into three parts. At the far right in the domain name is the Top Level Domain (TLD). It determines in which country or in which city the Internet presence exists, so one chooses for Germany for example .de, for Austria .at or for Berlin .berlin.
With the extension you can also specify directly whether the domain is commercially oriented (.com) or information purposes (.info). With the new Top Level Domains, which also includes, for example, .berlin, you can also classify the subject areas of the website.
Top level domains can be assigned as often as you like. The part before the dot in the domain name is called Second Level Domain. Second level domains are what is colloquially referred to as a domain.
As long as he is not yet forgiven to someone else, you can choose this yourself. Depending on what it is for a website, you can choose your own company name or any other name that suits the website well.
Every Second Level Domain, in combination with a Top Level Domain, can only be found once on the Internet, so it is unique.
The third level domain name, also called subdomain, is there to control certain applications. For example, each department has its own domain for large companies.

What to do if the desired name is already taken?

Before the domain name is set for the website, you have to register it. If the desired name is already taken, you can try to find alternatives, such as "meinwunschname.com" simply "meinwunschname.berlin". In the best case, the visitor or customer can already tell by the domain name what the website contains. For the computer, the top level domain is more important, as the internet address is read from the back to the front. When choosing the name, you should observe the applicable legislation. For example, you can not register brand names if you do not have your own reference to the name.
Care should be taken that not everything that is allowed makes sense. So you may use umlauts in the domain, but it does not make sense, because the German umlauts can not be entered in each country via the keyboard. Your own domain must be registered in a domain name registrar. The registration of the domain is limited in time, so you can not buy them permanently or must renew them annually.
Mostly the runtime lasts one year, after expiration this will be extended automatically. But there are also some that have a longer duration. Then you can save a few euros. For larger websites (not .de) up to 10 years are possible. Subsequent changes to the registration data or owner changes are possible online.

Why is a separate domain name better?

An own domain for the website shows trustworthiness and professionalism, especially in the business area this is of great importance.
The domain name is also in the e-mail address. The mail address should match your own domain, as this is more serious than a name from an external mail provider. An own domain thus offers a reputable web presence, a professional communication by e-mail, a quick recognizability and more customer confidence.
A website that resides on a subdomain is often funded by pop-up ads and banners. The provider automatically switches these on the page.
Corporate websites look unprofessional when third-party ads appear on them. With your own domain, you can decide for yourself whether advertising should be displayed or not and which advertisement should be displayed.
Another disadvantage of a subdomain comes through the search engines. For the most part, free websites are not even listed on search engines, as they are no longer subpages of the major provider websites. Thus, these can only be found via the exact address or links.
With a subdomain of WordPress you have the extension WordPress.com, this does not affect the visitor professionally. The visitor sees in a top-level domain that they want to invest money and give their website a professionalism. Another advantage of having your own domain with your own content is that it can not be easily deleted. For free websites, it can happen that it suddenly disappears from the net. This can happen if one allegedly violates the terms of use of the provider or the provider no longer exists. Another major disadvantage of a subdomain is that all content that belongs to the website belongs to the provider of the subdomain and not to one, just as it does to a domain of its own.

Conclusion: Your own domain is better

If you are faced with the question of using your own domain name or a subdomain, you should definitely choose your own domain name so that you have a better internet presence. Having your own domain not only offers many advantages, the website looks much more professional and gets more visitors through the search engines. With your own domain, you can decide on your own website and do not need to be afraid that it suddenly disappears.
All contents are self-owned and you can choose the advertising yourself. You can get your own domain quickly. Investing a few euros a year will definitely be worthwhile.