The first place you need to look is the website of a company that offers domain registration services, such as GoDaddy, Dynadot, Moniker or NamePros. For a comprehensive list of domain registrars, rated and reviewed, please follow this link. The minimum price of a .com domain registration with a trustworthy company is $5.99, while the maximum goes up to $9.99. Some of the domain registrars offer a free domain name along with a hosting account opened through their services.
On these websites you can also make a domain search to find out if your desired name is available. Be careful where you check the domain name availability, in the past there have been reports of companies that register your queried domain, only to offer it back for a higher price. It is always a good idea to do a search over the internet for forum topics and blog posts about your chosen registrar’s services and business conduct.
Assuming that from all your searches there are no available domain names, there are still three options that might just get you that perfect name.
Domain name snapping
Your first option would be to try and “snap” that name as soon as it becomes available. This kind of service is offered by companies such as SnapNames & Pool, where for a fee you can ask them to try and get you that domain name. Working with a “domain name snapping” company gives you improved chances to finally get that name. Assuming that there are more people who want to acquire the same name as you, you won’t stand a chance against the snapper’s bots if you try to register the domain by yourself. If you and all these people will use a snapper’s services and the domain name gets snapped, an auction will be opened and the highest offer will take the domain. If you are the only one that wants the name, as soon as it’s snapped it will be transferred to you.
Domain name auctions
If the above option doesn’t sound appealing to you, you can always check for registered domain names available for online auction, either on marketplaces like GoDaddy’s Domain Name Aftermarket, Sedo’s Domain Catalogue and Moniker’s Aftermarket or on the marketplaces available no famous internet and computer related forums like: NamePros, Digital Point or SitePoint. Here, registered users place domain names from their portfolio for sale at prices as low as $0.01. Since on these forum markets there is no contract signed, the risk of getting scammed is greater than on other markets, where the company that owns the market acts as an auction leader and payment intermediary.
Expired domains / Dropped domains
If you’ve tried both of the above options with no success there is still one think you can do, check for expired and dropped domains. Such lists of expired domains are regularly uploaded and updated on websites like StuckDomains. Since these lists are public, there is always a chance that someone else saw that name and registered the domain before you.
Tip: When auctioning online for a domain name you should first try and find out the real value of that name, including valid PageRank, backlinks indexed in search engines, domain age, domain length and keywords. All these will help you pay the right price and not more than the real value of the domain.
Thus being said, we wish you good luck in you domain search hoping that our little guide on how to register a domain names has helped you in your name hunt.