Waikiki Site – Choosing a Domain and Host

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by Ryan

The planning is done and we’re ready to turn this concept into a reality. Much like a construction crew needs a plot of land to build a house, we now need somewhere to put our website. Therefore, we need a domain name and some server space (via a host) to store the information.

Choosing the Domain

Since this is a travel site we’re not going to be having a lot of steady readers like Planting Dollars. It’s a niche that is only going to be valuable for those visiting or moving to Waikiki for the first, or maybe second time. Therefore the domain name needs to be easy to remember and focuses on our keyword, which in this instance is Waikiki.

There are a lot of domains already picked over so you’ll more than likely have to get creative with the name of the site. We’re not going to get waikiki.com or waikikibeach.com however we can get something close.

A trick I like to use is adding a verb to the front of the desired domain name or another noun at the end. Therefore you still have the keyword in the domain name and are only adding one additional word. For example we could name the site:

  • DiscoverWaikiki.com
  • EnjoyWaikikiBeach.com
  • WaikikiBeachGuide.com

You can also add hyphens to the domain you’re interested in since hyphens are search engine friendly. As a result the domain could be something like:

  • Discover-Waikiki.com
  • Waikiki-Beach.com
  • All-About-Waikiki

The trick to remember here is that you keep the keyword in the domain. This doesn’t work for brand names like Yahoo or Google, but for this type of site the keyword is essential to have in the title since it creates association for the visitor and is easier for Google to understand your niche topic.

Checking Domain Name Availability

Whenever I want to see if a domain is open I go to Checkdomain.com. You can also use Whois.com, either is fine, I’m just in the habit of using Checkdomain.com.


Choosing Your Host

After you’ve brainstormed your domain you can now chose a host. If you’d like to build a similar site as to what I’m doing and follow the same processes you can use the same host as well. I use bluehost.com for all my hosting and have great things to say about them. You can pick up hosting for less than $7 a month which is pretty cheap considering you’re using it to start your own business.


You’re simply going to want to press the green sign up button on the front page, then on the following page enter the domain you’ve decided, followed by entering your contact information and credit card info and you’re done. It’s pretty easy to register a domain and get hosting so just follow their two steps and you’ll be the proud owner of your new piece of internet land.

In the next post I’ll show you how to go about setting up the website with the host, but for now just know that I highly recommend bluehost.com and have had great luck with them.

We’re now on our way to building our travel niche websites!

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Search Engine Viking February 26, 2010 at 8:44 am

I’m really enjoying this series you’re putting together, it’s been a blast. Heck, your whole site rocks. I stumbled across it a few weeks back and read it every day.


I’ve used BlueHost for all my sites, too. I haven’t had very many problems with them, probably no more than other hosting services would give, but I don’t know since I’ve never tried any of the others. It seems like once every six months or so they shut everything down for maintenance, but it only lasts a couple of hours. Just long enough for me to stop crying and accept the reality that my sites might be gone for good.

But I do have a suggestion/question about the way you choose domain names. Have you ever considered .net or .org instead of .com’s? The reason I ask is you can sometimes find a killer keyword domain name as a .net or .org, and in all of my experiences these two rank just as fast and easily as .coms. And an exact keyword title can give you some serious horsepower when it comes to SEO. I get some great SERP results with nothing more than an exact-match domain name, no back links, no on-site SEO to speak of. Just a thought.

Great site man. I love reading your stuff. Keep it coming. But don’t get eaten by any sharks.

Financial Samurai February 26, 2010 at 3:49 pm

Hey Ryan, i’ve got some great site names for you if you want to buy. I bought a whole bunch after reading this post from CCC “Domain Name Investing 101: Online Real Estate As An Asset class”

Maybe you can be my first customer!!
.-= Financial Samurai´s last blog ..The Curse Of Making Too Much Money And Not Pursuing Your Dreams =-.

LeanLifeCoach February 26, 2010 at 4:19 pm

hmmm two of these are taken, I wonder which you own?

Somewhere along the line I hear that you should stay away from hyphenated names. Is this true?
.-= LeanLifeCoach´s last blog ..Dealing With Debt Collection – =-.

Jeremy Johnson February 26, 2010 at 6:11 pm

I use Bluehost too! Definitely can’t go wrong with using them – good value and a very nice control panel that makes setup very easy. It’s also very easy to setup Filezilla if you want to transfer files to your server or vice versa.
.-= Jeremy Johnson´s last blog ..Introducing The First Wizard, Lisa Irby =-.

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