Last updated on September 11th, 2023 at 10:24 am
Are you looking for a guide on how to register a domain in South Africa?
You are in the right place.
In today’s article, here are the exact things you are going to learn;
- How to pick the best website name
- Cheapest domain registrar in South Africa
- Steps to register a website.
This won’t be like any other guide you have seen before.
There will be more and more examples used, so buckle up and let’s get started.
Are you ready?
First things first.
Table of Contents
What is a domain name?
A domain name is that special address you use to access a website.
Facebook is a popular social media platform here in SA.
To access the website, you either use the app or a browser.
And it is the browser I am interested in.
If you are using a browser then, you type www.facebook.com.
Pay attention, because there are a couple of things you need to learn from this example.
Because you can apply the tips later on when picking your website name.
So, first, let’s breakdown the Facebook domain name.’
As you can see, there are two parts;
- the domain name (website name)
- Domain extension.
What you need to know about a domain name
Let’s take a deep dive into a domain name.
As mentioned, a domain name is a special address you type into the web browser to access a site.
Think of it as the home address to a house (website).
Without it, no one can access the site or its content.
There is some technical stuff behind how a domain name works, but we won’t go into that here.
But there is something you need to know;
Since a domain name is what people associate with your website, it needs to be:
- Short and memorable – look at Facebook, the name short and easy to remember. Avoid long names and keep it at most 3 words long. Anything beyond that is unadvisable.
- Brandable – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, what do they all have in common? Besides being the top social media platforms, their domain names are brandable. Avoid generic names that don’t mean anything.
- Make sure it easy to type. Use simple grammar and some weird names you picked off the Reddit forum
- Stick with alphabets if you can. Avoid using numbers on your domain name, unless you have to.
- Think long term and not short term. Let me explain. Let’s say you are intending to create an online store right now to sell ladies’ shoes. Instead of having a website name like ladieshoes.com, what will happen if you decide to stock additional product categories in the future?
Take into consideration these tips when choosing a domain name in South Africa.
What you need to know about the domain extension
The domain extension is the last part of a domain.
There are very many types of domain extensions, and here are some of the most popular;
- gTLDs, or generic top-level domains – are domains meant to be used for anything (general stuff). And that explains why they are so common. For example; COM.BIZ and.INFO.
- ccTLDs, or country code top-level domains – are extensions that represent a country. For example; .co.za for South Africa, .co.ke for Kenya, .in for India, etc.
- new top-level domains (nTLDs) – I bet you have seen domains like .shop buzz, .pizza…. These are new domains that entered the market in 2017.,
Now, from what you now know, which extension should you choose?
Here are some tips to help you figure out what to do;
If you are creating a website targeting a specific country, go with a ccTLD domain.
A website targeting South Africans, you are better off using the .co.za domain.
On the other hand, a website for a global audience can use the gTLDs domains.
Now, if you are looking for a unique name that will stand out among the competition, go with nTLDs.
For an online fashion store, a boutique. shop sounds better than anything else, especially if the other name is taken (already registered).
Up to this point, you know enough to pick the best website name. Now, let me show you how to register a domain in South Africa.
How to register a domain in South Africa (Tutorial)
Before you get started, I suggest you have a list of potential names (at least 10 possible website names).
Because most domain names are taken. Meaning someone else may have registered it.
And if so happens your preferred website name already belongs to someone else, you can turn to your list for help.
How To Register A Domain In South Africa: Check domain availability
To get started, go to https://truehost.co.za/
Type your domain name on the box and Search.
Two things will happen;
Either the domain is not available;
Or it is available;
If it is not available, go to the name on your list.
But it is not yet registered, go ahead and click on Add to Cart.
And then Checkout.
How To Register A Domain In South Africa: Domain Configuration
Tick all the boxes as shown.
- You get free DNS management
- Protect your ID
- Email forwarding.
Change domain nameservers if you want to custom ones.
Otherwise, leave it as is.
Click the continue button.
How To Register A Domain In South Africa: Review and Checkout
Here is where you provide details to help process your order fast.
Pick your currency here (Rand or dollars).
And use the coupon/discount code if you have one.
Create a user account.
But if you are an existing customer, go ahead and just log in.
Choose payment method.
- Check the T&C condition box
- Make sure the details are correct
- If you have additional information, use the box provided to express them.
Finally, click on Checkout to pay for your order.
After paying, you will receive credentials at the email address you provided. So make sure it is valid.
And that is how to register a domain in South Africa.