Domain Names and Hosting

Explained by Common Craft
Creating a custom website for a small business can seem complicated. This video explains the basic elements that make it work by following the story of Emma, a dog walker.
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Video Transcript:

Emma loves dogs and recently, her favors for friends have turned into a business. And now she needs a website to do it full time. But she’s not sure how it all fits together. Does she only need a domain name like or is there more to think about?

Over coffee a friend gave Emma a brief lesson on getting started with a custom-built website. First, she would need a domain name. Emma likes the domain name for her site, but she needs to be sure it’s available. To check availability, she can use a domain name website to search for it.

If is available, she can register it. This means paying a modest annual fee to the company that registers the name. As long as she keeps up with these payments, the name is exclusively hers to use for the website and email addresses.

If the .com suffix is not available, she can use others like .biz or .net. With a domain name secured, she could think about what the website should contain. She knows some local web designers and developers who help her get a design in place that has images, colors and descriptions of her services.

She now has two important things: the domain name and a design for the site. Next, her website needs a home - a place for the images and words to live and be accessible on the web. That home is a kind of computer called a server. When a person visits a website, what appears on their screen originates from the server.

The problem is that these servers can be a pain to manage, so most people work with companies who specialize in managing servers, DNS and websites. These companies are called “hosts”. For a fee, Emma can give her website a secure and reliable home and leave the technical aspects to the experts. The host gives Emma and her designers and developers a secure way to build the site and make changes.

Now she has it all, but to get her site online, she’ll need to make sure all the organizations are on the same page. This means telling her domain name registrar where to find the new website at the host. This way, when someone types, the domain name system knows where to find the site and make it available.

Once everything is set, the system works seamlessly. Emmasdogcare now has a home on the web and Emma gets to pick her favorite dog pics for her website.


What it teaches:

This video explains the steps that one takes to have a custom built website. Our character Emma has a dog walking business and needs a website. A friend walks her through the process of finding a domain name and getting the site online. It teaches:

  • How to research and reserve a domain name
  • The role of web designers and developers
  • How servers make websites available
  • Why her website needs a “home” in the form of a host
  • How the domain name registrar and host work together

Video Info:

  • Duration:  02m 30s
  • Captions Available:  YES
  • Lesson Plan:  YES
  • Category:  Technology
  • ISTE Standard:  Creative Communicator, Indicator 6a

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