While domains (also called domain names) and websites are closely connected, they are two completely separate things.
In this article, we explain the difference between the two. In addition, you will also be introduced to the concept of hosting.
So, what is the difference between domains and websites?
What’s a domain and why do you need it?
In short, domains are simply a human friendly format of a website’s IP address. They’re also the name of your website.
Domain names are often purchased and used for creating a website or setting up an email account. But that doesn’t necessarily mean you have to. Domain names can be purchased from domain registrars, such as GoDaddy.
Sometimes people purchase domains and don’t do anything with them at all. This is known as a parked domain. That is when there is no website or email attached to a registered domain.
Other times, people purchase domain names and plan to create a website with the domain later. Buying and registering a domain name beforehand ensures that you have the domain reserved for when you are ready to use it.
That is because you can’t create an email address or a website without first purchasing the domain name that you want to use.
It’s also important to keep in that mind that by purchasing a domain name, that is not the same thing as creating a website. Rather, you would first need to create a website and then connect your domain name to it.
What’s hosting any why do you need it?
A good way of thinking about hosting is that it’s sort of like the leased parking space for your website on the web. Hosting companies house, serve and maintain the files for your website, making them visible on the web to the public.
When building a WordPress website as an example, you would need to purchase a hosting plan, along with a domain in order to make your website live on the web.
However, when using a website builder to create your website, there is no need to purchase hosting separately because it is already included directly within the plan.
Many new business owners don’t want to spend too much time or money on creating a website, so that’s what makes website builders such an attractive option. It’s a simple and highly-affordable way to get a website up quickly for your business.
For a detailed step-by-step instructional on how to create your website using your domain and a website builder, see How to Build a Website with GoDaddy Website Builder.
Okay, well there you have it. Hopefully this short article gave you a good introduction to the difference between domains and websites.
It also hopefully helped you to get a better idea of what domains can be used for.
So, how will you be using your domain?