You need two things to have a successful website and professional email: a domain name and a hosting account.
- Domain Name. Your domain name is what people type into their browser to find your website, but the website's address is really a unique string of identifying numbers called an IP address that isn't easy for most people to remember. Your domain name functions as a memorable link, or shortcut, to the IP address, making it easier to get to your website without needing to remember its numeric address.
- Hosting Account. Website hosts are companies that house, serve, and maintain files for many websites. A website hosting company is like a shopping center that has space for many individual stores. A hosting account is like leasing a space in that shopping center where you can set up shop. Website hosting companies let you lease space on their web servers where you can store your website files and make them available for your visitors to view.
Without a domain name, your website visitors won't have a memorable way to get to your website. And without a hosting account, there won't be a website to go to.
Gateway offers both hosting and domain names to make it easy to manage your email, website, and domains— all in one place. You can register new domain names and transfer domains you already own right inside your Gateway account.
Using a Domain You Already Own
If you already own a domain name that is registered elsewhere, you can still use it with your Gateway account. You’ll just need to change your domain’s settings to point to Gateway. To do that, contact your registrar or log in to your account with your current registrar and change the name servers to:
This tells your registrar that Gateway is now the hosting provider. It doesn't move website content, that is something you'll do later in your control panel. Once that’s been done, it will take every host and internet service provider about 4 to 48 hours to update their records to associate our name servers with your domain. This is called DNS propagation and sadly, you just have to wait for it to complete.
Once a domain has been pointed here (by changing the name servers), there are two ways you can use the domain on your account. You can transfer the domain’s registration to your Gateway account, or you can just assign the domain name with your account without transferring the registration.
Domain names are typically renewed once a year and sometimes for multiple years at a time. It can be easy to lose track of where your domains are registered when it’s time for renewal, especially if your domain and hosting are in separate places. And keep in mind, you need both a hosting provider and a domain registrar to have an active website and working email. For this reason many of our customers like to transfer domains to their Gateway account to keep things simple. Here you can keep everything on one bill, purchase domains for multiple years, and set up your domains and hosting to automatically renew. No need to worry about a lapse in service or worse -- losing your domain registration altogether.
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