What is a domain name?
A domain name is the address of your website that people type in the browser URL bar to visit your website. A good way to think of it is if your website was a house, then your domain name would be its address.
What is the difference between a domain name, a URL, and a website?
A domain is the name of a website (such as google.com), a URL is how to find a website (for example: https://google.com), and a website is what people see and interact with when they get there. In other words, when you buy a domain, you have purchased the name for your site, but you still need to build the website itself.
Domains must be registered through a domain registrar to be used
In order to obtain a domain, it must be registered through a domain registrar (such as GoDaddy, NameCheap, Google, etc). You do get one free domain name with your Integer subscription which is registered and managed by Integer and kept active for as long as your subscription is active.
Once registered, domains must be pointed at your website
Just because your domain is registered doesn't mean it will automatically point to your website (unless you register your domain with us and then we automatically do this for you). You need to put in a record (which we will give you) that you or your domain registrar can add to your domain settings that tells that domain name to point to your Integer content. Just like when you buy a house, you won't just automatically start receiving mail at your new house. You need to let the post office know where to send your mail by giving them the address of the new house.
Watch out for domain scams!
Domain scams are very common these days and are very sneaky. One of the most common domain scams is for a scam company to pose as a common domain registrar (such as GoDaddy) and send you an email (or even mail you a notice) telling you that your domain is expiring and that you must pay them to renew it. The amounts they ask you to pay for your domain are way above normal asking prices for domain registration (usually around $20 or less) and the emails often contain links that can be harmful to your computer or steal your information.
If you receive an email telling you that your domain is expiring, make sure it is from the company that is managing your domain. If you don't know who is managing your domain, you can look it up here using the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers' (ICANN) WHOIS Lookup data service. Type in your domain name and click the "Lookup" button and look under Registrar. An easy way to tell if your domain is managed by Integer is to go to the "Domain Name" section in your Integer member area. As a member of Integer, we automatically renew and manage your domain for you, so if you are an Integer member and you receive an email saying your domain is expiring, it is mostly likely a scam. Please forward the email you received to us at firstname.lastname@example.org, so we can report it as a scam. If your domain is self-administered, check to see if the registrar on WHOIS matches to who you received the email/mail from. If they do not match, contact your domain registrar and they will tell you what to do from there.