What is a Domain

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A domain is a name that is registered in order for individuals and organisations to establish a presence on the World Wide Web. Domains are registered primarily for services such as e-mail and website hosting and allow you to effectively advertise yourself or your organisation online.

If you register the name mycompany.co.za then any website linked to this domain name could be viewed by entering mycompany.co.za into a website browser such as Firefox or Chrome. In addition to this, any e-mail accounts linked to the domain would end with the domain name (e.g.: info@mycompany.co.za).

The registration fee for a new domain depends on the type of domain that you register. Registration fees can be found on the domain pricelist.

All domains must be renewed once per year. The renewal fee is the same as that of the registration fee.

Note: Registering a domain secures the name. In order to create e-mail accounts or upload a website, you will also need to apply for a hosting package.


Once you have decided on a domain, the next step is register it. A guide to registering domains is available here.

There are different types of domains which denote your location and / or type of organisation:

Top Level Domains (TLD): Top level domains are denoted by the final part of a domain name after the last dot (e.g.: example.tld). The most widely-used are .net, .com, .org and .biz.

Second Level Domains (SLD): These domains are denoted by the part of the domain name which appears to the left of the last dot (e.g.: example.sld.tld). An example of a second level domain would be example.za.com (where the za portion represents the SLD).

Country Code Top Level Domains (ccTLD): This type of domain represents specific countries (e.g.: .za for South Africa). There are different domain types which fall into this category and some come with specific restrictions. The .za domains which can be registered by any one include .co.za, .web.za, .net.za and .org.za.

Generic Top Level Domains (gTLD): Generic top level domains are a fairly recent addition to the types of domains which can be registered and are mostly used for particular themes. Examples include .capetown, .joburg and .durban.

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