Think you have to pay big bucks for a web designer to get people to your Etsy store? You don’t. For less than $10 per year, you can buy your own “.com” domain name and redirect visitors to your Etsy store address. Within minutes, you get the look and feel of a web site at about the cost a meal for two at a fast food restaurant.
Start your Etsy domain name search now!
This redirect is called “forwarding.” If you haven’t heard of domain forwarding before, you are going to be surprised at what a simple concept it is:
- Your visitors type in www.”yourname”.com
- They see your store.
It doesn’t get much easier than that! Forwarding service is just one in a suite of benefits one can get with one’s own domain name, today. Some of these benefits will be familiar, such an email account. Others are a bit esoteric, such as “masking.” (More on “masking” in a moment.) Whether you take advantage of all the freebies that come with a domain name, the ability to forward your customers to your online store is alone worth the cost.
When I bought my first domain name, some years back, I paid about $70 for 2 years use of the name. Today, that same giant of a domain vendor still charges that much. Choose another vendor and a domain name can be had for as low as $1.99 per year when purchased with other domain services. At www.DownDoggy.com, domain names cost about $9.49 per year and forwarding is free, as is 24/7 Customer Service whenever you need help. DownDoggy also has a handy tutorial page to show how to forward a domain to an Etsy store: http://downdoggy.com/info/etsy_forward.php. The point is, no matter whom you buy your domain name from, domains are within everyone’s budget. No online store should be without a domain forwarding to it—especially yours.
When you are ready to shop for your own domain, I recommend you buy a “.com” domain name because they are the most common. It’s the one most people think of when they think of a domain name. Even if you purchased a “.biz,” “.net” or “.org” domain name—all very common extensions-- it’s almost a certainty that some of your customers will accidentally type in “.com” instead. You might as well get the “.com” domain name if it’s available and save those wayward customers the confusion. Sadly, many “.com” domain names have been taken already. If you find a “.com” in your company name, snap it up without delay!
People say they “own” a domain but what they own is exclusive use of the name as long as they pay an annual fee for it. Don’t risk letting your domain name lapse. Purchase your domain name for as many years as you can comfortably afford—and don’t forget to keep your email address and credit card information up-to-date in the account your domain provider will give you. If you allow your vendor to automatically renew your domain name when it’s about to expire, you will be less likely to have your domain name expire. Once your domain name lapses, it can be expensive to renew it—assuming someone else hasn’t swooped in and purchased it.
When you forward your domain, you may wish to mask the forward, too. Masking is hiding the actual page address in your browser’s address bar. Instead of your customers seeing www.”yourname”.etsy.com, they will see www.”yourname”.com -- no matter which of your pages they are viewing. Switch to another page on your store? It still says your domain name in the address bar. Forwarding and masking more fully “brands” your online store to your company. Masking is also free at many domain providers, including DownDoggy.com.
If you would like to see how I’ve forwarded and masked my domain name to my Etsy store, please visit me at www.SkateVisions.com.
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