The answer to the first question is that yes it is possible to change the domain name of your existing website or blog. Irrespective of whether you have proudly registered a domain name, there can always be a change of heart due to various reasons. You are reading the right article if you wish to change the name of your existing website or blog.
It might happen that the domain name that you have always wanted just became available. Or you might want to rebrand your website for which you might need a new domain name. No matter for what reason you need a new domain name, this is a step by step guide to do that. The most crucial aspect is to ensure that the change of domain name shouldn’t affect your website or your website visitors.
Changing the domain name has its own benefits; you might be able to secure a domain name that is short, smart and easy to remember and gives a whole new high to your business brand. So why not take it? If you get a new domain name that is marketable and impressive, you don’t have to worry about the process involved in changing the domain name, it’s all mentioned in this guide.
Reasons why you should consider the change in domain name:
You Wish To Rebrand
Maybe you acquired or purchased a company and you need to change its domain name. you wish to completely revamp your website with a totally new feel and a new name of course. Maybe you want to expand the spectrum of products that you are selling through your website and you want to assign a more appropriate name to your website. Maybe you don’t want the domain name TLD that you have right now, you might want to switch from .com to .in or something else.
All your reasons to change the domain name are perfectly understandable, this is a good decision and you should surely go for it!
You Wish To Relocate
Imagine you are a freelancer professional and you moved from Canada to Australia. In this case if you have registered a country specific domain name TLD earlier like .ca you will have to change it to denote that you have shifted to Australia and now you will need a .au domain name TLD. And this is a strong reason to change your domain name. In this case you can either register for a totally new domain name or you can check if your existing domain name is available with .au TLD.
There are a wide range of country code domain names available (ccTLDs). Therefore, if you own a personal website and in case you relocate, you will have to opt for the appropriate country specific domain name TLD.
Related : Why Should You Register Multiple Domain Name Extensions?
The Nature of Your Business Has Changed
You excitedly picked your domain name according to the nature of your business some years ago and now you have completely changed the nature and spectrum of your business and the domain name that you have right now might not be apt for your new business. For instance, if you were into selling clothes and other fashion products, you might have chosen a domain name that is appropriate for that business and now you have decided to venture into selling household products, in this case it is obvious that you need a complete change of domain name. Or you would want to have a domain name that encompasses both your brands and sounds appropriate.
Maybe you are into software development and you wish to change your .com domain name to a .dev or a .io TLD to provide more strength to your website.
Irrespective of whatever your business story is, you will need a different domain name with an appropriate TLD if you wish to change the nature of your business or your working style.
Related : 10 Instances When Your Business Is Craving For A New Website
The Domain Name That You Always Wanted Is Up For Sale
You might have settled for some other domain name earlier and now ‘THEE DOMAIN NAME’ that you always wanted is up for sale. Maybe earlier you might have registered a long domain name because you didn’t get the one that you wanted and now it is suddenly available and you know that it will benefit your business brand and your customers will love it.
MilesWeb offers you the best marketplace for buying the desired domain name! You can get the domain name that you are looking for here! You can also use the WHOIS look up tool in order to contact the owner of the domain name that you wish to register.
Related : Why Should You Opt For A .ONLINE Domain Name?
Related : Why .XYZ Domain Name Is The Most Trending Thing Now?
What Should Be Your New Domain Name?
Registering your new domain name is completely your choice but here’s some friendly advice about registering an appropriate domain name that will help you to establish your business or personal brand.
Analyze Your Product And Future Plans
You are registering another domain name now and you cannot afford to panic or regret after registering it. In case you are selling a product, think and analyze about how you wish to sell that product. Think about are you selling a service or a physical object? Note down some related words and spend time thinking about more improvised and apt domain name ideas.
Plan about what other products or services you would want to sell in the future and think of a domain name that encompasses everything so that there is no need to change the domain name again.
Related : Important Things To Know Before Registering A Domain Name
Describe The Brand
Think about your brand and its goals. What do you wish to achieve through your business? How do you want your products to be portrayed? Analyze various common words and phrases and then finalize your domain name. Your new domain name should be in tune with your business brand and the vision of your brand so that you can market it accordingly.
Keep It Short And Simple
Try to be very precise while selecting the new domain name. It is understandable that the most common and popular words and phrases can be more pricy. There is no harm if you wish to go for them otherwise you can think of very close alternatives to the popular domain names. Keep in mind that a short and simple domain name is easy to remember and it will provide you an advantage over the long domain names. Short domain names are more memorable and they have the power to strengthen brand awareness.
Check If The Domain Name Is Legit
Be very cautious while selecting the domain name. You don’t want to end up registering a tricky domain name that has been penalized by any Google update. You can refer to the websites like Ahrefs and SEMrush in order to know the details of the domain name you are considering, you can find out about the search visibility and the traffic information of the domain name as well. Check if there are any spammy backlinks and contact the current domain registrar about checking the Google Search Console in order to know if there are any manual penalties on the domain name that you are considering.
Related : A Complete Guide To Domain Name Cybersquatting
How To Buy The New Domain Name?
Know that you know all the guidelines about registering a new domain name, you need to take all the necessary precautions to make sure that you won’t register a domain name that you will have to change later. You need to think from all aspects. So let’s move ahead and start the process of registering your domain name.
You can get started and search for your domain name at MilesWeb, you can get the desired web hosting as well at a discounted price with many impressive features and round the clock support.
As mentioned earlier, put in a lot of time in researching on the most appropriate domain name for your business or profession that you won’t have to change anytime soon.
Once you have registered your domain name, it’s time to ensure that you are ready to take a step ahead in terms of preparing all the content that you wish to transfer from your old website to the new website.
Related : Domain Name And Hosting Selection : What You Need To Know?
How To Take The Backup Of Your Website?
In order to ensure the smooth functioning of your website when you switch the domain names, it is recommended to take a backup of your website just in case anything goes wrong.
If you opt for any of the web hosting plans with MilesWeb, you get the option of taking the backup of your website data. This is the most crucial feature you should look for in order to make sure that you don’t lose any data while changing the domain name of your website. You can easily download your website backups locally and then you are all set to switch the domain names.
Even when your website is up with the new domain name, consider taking the option of automatic daily backups as it saves you a lot of time and effort and protects your website from losing out any important information and you can easily register all your website data whenever required.
Related : Backup And Disaster Recovery Plan – A Necessity For Every Small Business
Related : 7 Excellent WordPress Backup Plugins For Easy Website Backup
How To Save Your Website Traffic?
It is important to switch your domain name without losing the traffic to your website and without losing the website rankings as well. The backlinks that you have built for your website in the past are important from the SEO point of view. Here are the necessary steps to help you retain your website traffic.
Create A Sitemap And Set 301 Redirects
The sitemap of your website displays the internal structure of your website. A sitemap helps the search engines to navigate within your website. Once you have created sitemaps for both old and new pages of your website, you can compare and organize accordingly, so that every old page of your website points to the right new page, this can be done with the use of the 301 redirects. This is a permanent redirect that will send your existing website visitors to a different URL (the URL of your new website).
This is a crucial step for maintaining the SEO ranking, for getting your new website indexed by Google and for the convenience of your website visitors.
You can know about the complete process of setting up 301 redirects here – Easy Steps To Create 301 Redirect
Related : Why Should You Create A Sitemap For Your WordPress Website And How?
Utilize The Change Of Address Tool
Connect your old website names and new website names with the Change Of address Tool provided by Google. This step will let Google know about your website domain name change and helps the Google Search results page to know what you did.
Check For The 404 Pages
You might have encountered the page that says – ‘Page Not Found’. 404 page not found is an error page and it is displayed when the correct URL path is missing. This page is shown when the page that you intend to see cannot be shown. Perform a check of all your old website URLs and in case you have any 404 pages, ensure that all of them are redirected to the new 404 pages appropriately.
In order to do this, the old domain name should be redirected for a longer period of time. It is recommended to redirect the old domain name at least for six months however redirecting it for twelve months and longer is also good.
Related : Why A 404 Page Is Important? How To Design It Creatively?
Talk To Your Clients
When you plan a change of domain name, the most important step is to talk to your clients about the change. And you need to talk well in time so that they don’t get confused of the change that you are making. Irrespective of whether you change the domain name right after purchasing the domain name or months later; it is crucial to analyze every point of contact through the social media websites, through email and through call and communicate with your clients consistently about making the big change.
Communicate with them about why you are changing the domain name and engage with them. This will ensure better understanding of your decision for your loyal customers and they will continue to trust your brand.
How Long Will This Process Last?
While reading all this you might probably be wondering about how long does it actually take to change the domain name? The answer to this question completely depends on how every step of the process is executed.
You might need some time to select from the website names available. Before you invest in the new domain name, you might want to perform a thorough research and know about the process of different domain names.
When it comes to technology, it will be important to consider how you will be backing up your website, including the system you are using and the technical knowledge you have.
When you complete all the process, Google might take some time to unite the old website signals with the new website; this process is done on the basis of various aspects. Ideally, it can take about a month or two or it might take a time up to six months.
How much does it cost to get a new domain name? This again depends on your budget and the price of the domain name that you wish to buy. Apart from this, you will also have to pay for designers, web developers, copywriters and marketers to ensure that your website is up to the mark.
You can take your time to plan properly and to ask for prices and estimates to accurately predict and plan the time frame required and the total cost of your domain name change.
Over to you…
It’s comparatively easy to make the domain name switch in the initial stages of establishing your brand and your website. This is true because in the early stages of your brand, customers haven’t really built any relationships with you and it will be easier for you to change your brand name so that your existing customers can quickly make the switch too.
There are certainly more risks involved when you think of changing the domain name of an older website. You need to be more careful while moving an older website because everything needs to be moved perfectly and the traffic has to be routed from the social media websites and every page of your website has to be accurately analyzed so that you don’t lose the search engine positions that your website has right now.
Therefore, depending on this whether you have a new website or an old one, it is advisable to put some time into planning and think about how will you go about making the domain name switch.