Help, My Domain Name Is Already Taken!

19th March, 2018 by

The internet exists in a constant state of flux. New websites are being launched all the time while existing ones disappear when their period of ownership expires or their owners resell their addresses. Yet as the number of websites in existence globally continues its inexorable rise, acquiring a new domain name is becoming increasingly challenging.

Statistics demonstrate the scale of this problem. There were over 2.1 million domains with .uk TLDs in use at the end of January, including 11,500 new sites registered during the first month of 2018. And while 16,000 .uk domains were suspended for criminal activity in the twelve months to October 2017, more sites are launched than are taken down every month. From a global perspective, .uk isn’t even a particularly common TLD. Verisign reported that a total of 131.9 million .com sites were registered as of January, alongside 14.5 million .net addresses.

The importance of a domain check

Performing a domain check ensures that your preferred domain name hasn’t already been acquired. It runs specific character strings through a database to determine which TLDs are presently in use. As an example, the domain name pizzatheaction has been registered with .com, .co.uk and .net TLDs. These addresses can’t be used by anyone else until their present owners relinquish ownership by reselling or allowing their ownership to expire.

However, that’s not the end of the story. As the body responsible for overseeing the domain name market, non-profit organisation Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) has been steadily releasing new TLDs since 2001. An entrepreneurial chef with a wood-fired oven could register pizzatheaction.site, .store and many other TLDs. Each of these uniform resource locators (or URLs) is distinct from the others, enjoying its own domain authority in search engine results. Of the three registered pizzatheaction TLDs listed in the previous paragraph, two are owned by unrelated British businesses, while the third isn’t presently being used.

A domain check interrogates ownership databases to reveal whether URLs are in use or still available. UK2’s website has a search bar on its homepage which quickly reveals whether a preferred domain name is reserved or not. We cross-check TLDs from .actor to .webcam, listing the selling price beside each available domain. Some cost just 99p for a whole year.

WHOIS it?

If your preferred name is available, we’re ideally placed to handle the purchase and transfer of ownership. We also provide optional additional services including a website builder tool and domain privacy. This is an important feature since a domain check through the global WHOIS database reveals names and contact details for every website’s owner. Domain privacy redacts your ownership of the domain on WHOIS, publishing a proxy’s data to ensure your phone number and email/postal addresses aren’t visible. For a limited time, UK2.net is offering free domain privacy with the purchase of a new domain. WHOIS can be searched from anywhere in the world, and registering with it (or appointing a proxy) is a legal responsibility when purchasing a new domain name. However, domain privacy is only offered to non-commercial sites registered by private individuals.

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