After you register a domain name, you have more options than just building a website on it. You can use a domain name for several other reasons even though most people register a name specifically for a website. Many people abandon their projects and have a domain name that does nothing for them. Here are some ideas for your domain to bring it back to life, so you aren’t wasting money every year in registration fees.
1. Use the Domain for Email Only
Many large organizations use their main domain for customer communication through email, but then they have another domain for internal email. Even if you don’t host a website on your domain, you can still send and receive email. You don’t even need to have a hosting company to send and receive email using your domain. For $5 each month, you can sign up with Google Apps and receive email for your business No website is required for this setup, and Google even gives you several free ggabytes in cloud storage. For $10 each month, you can get email and unlimited cloud storage.
When you use a third party for email hosting, you need to set up your registrar’s MX records to point to the third-party host. Google has an excellent step-by-step tutorial to help you synchronize your Apps account with the registrar’s configurations. Several other companies offer email hosting such as Rackspace and GoDaddy. Google Apps is completely in the cloud, so it makes it convenient for domain owners with no experience with email hosting and its configurations.
2. Try Your Hand at Self Hosting
Have you ever wondered what it’s like to host your own web server:, What about hosting a game server:, For an official setup, you need a static IP and networking hardware, which are expensive. The static IP is needed to route traffic to your web server. A static IP never changes, and you probably have a dynamic IP from your ISP. A dynamic IP won’t work for web hosting, but there are services on the market that let you experiment with hosting your own server. It’s a great way to get a better understanding of what you need to host your own servers without spending thousands in equipment and services.
Using your domain, you can sign up with one of the several dynamic IP services such as NolP or DynDNS These services let you point your domain to their servers, and then traffic is redirected to your own web or gaming server. You Fun software on your server that updates the dynamic IP sece with your server’s dynamic IP assigned by the ISP. Thisrviallowsyou to have a dynamic IP but still maintain a web or gaming server. These services have a low monthly fee, so you can experiment before you decide to invest in costly hosting resources.
Before you host your own server, ensure that you understand the importance of security and know howto secure your server and your home network. As a matter of fact, you should host your internal home network on a separate router. Place the web or gaming server on another router. This keeps your experiment away from your main network, so your personal data is safe from hackers.
3. Use the Domain for Your Social Media
Every registar lets you forward your domain to a secondary one. For instance, you could buy the name umydomain.com.’ and then forward it to google.com. Of course, Google doesn’t need your help with traffic, but you could help drive traffic to your social media accounts using this method.
After you register your domain name, you can use the registrar’sforvvarding service to send users to your social media accounts. It’s a great way to have a vanity URL for social media. For instance, you register the name umysocialaccount.comu and then forward it to your Facebook profile. You can give the vanity URL to your customers and use it for social media marketing. Each registrar has different configuration pages. Find the page in your domain configuration that offers forwarding. It should be simple after you find the page. You enter a URL or IP address where your domain should be forwarded.
4. Create a Personal Resume Page
Technically, creating a personal resume page counts as building a website, but it’s much simpler and usually only requires a day of your time. It’s usually a one-page site that displays your resume or your personal information. It’s perfect for a designer applying to job applications The designer uploads his portfolio to the site and gives potential employees the domain instead of carrying around a printed portfolio. Your personal page won’t rank in search engines but it’s much more convenient and professional to have your own resue or portfolio page. Potential employers can browse site site and view each of your portfolio items after reading your resume instead of waiting for a one-on-one interview.
5. Park Your Site
Most registrars give you the opportunityto park your domain. You can then show ads on the site whenever someone types it into a browser. This used to be a great wayto make money on domains but search engines no longer mank parked sites Nevertheless, it’s still a great wayto make a little extra money when you’re not using your domain. You can also show a “for .10 page on a parked domain. This letsvisitors knowthat you’re interested in selling the domain for the right offer.
You can also show a “for sale” page on a parked domain. This lets visitors know that you’re interested in selling the domain for the right offer. Some registrars require that you use their personal parked web pages. If you plan to park the domain after you buy it, make sure the registrar offers parking services that allow you to show your own ads.
These five alternatives for your domain name are much more useful than abandoning your domain and allowing it to sit unused at the regstrar. They can even make you a little extra money each month. Just remember that you need to continue paying registration fees each year to keep the domain active, or it’s automatically put to auction or set to unregistered, which allows othersto purchase it.