Domains - A nuts and bolts lesson Part 1

Domains are a popular marketing topic. You'll hear about their importance along with varied opinions regarding how you should choose one and how many you should connect to your website. We agree that having your own domain pointing to your website is important.


But before you google "domains" and sign up for the first option you see, we thought we'd talk about the two primary types of domains, so you'll know which type is right for you.  


For our purposes today, there are 2 kinds of domains that we'll discuss.  FASO subdomains and personalized domains [1].


A FASO subdomain is assigned to every FASO account and is always the following format: username.fineartstudioonline.com.  You can give this address to anyone and, when entered in the address bar[2] of a browser, will send them directly to your site.  It's free and there's nothing for you to remember in regards to keeping it renewed or working correctly with your website.  Sounds great, right?


But hold on - before you decide that a subdomain is all you need - there is one major drawback.  Should you decide to leave our fabulous service, you are unable to take this subdomain with you.  This is actually how many online services work, including Facebook, Etsy, and Pinterest.  When you create a marketing presence on these sites, you can only use the subdomain they provide you to refer visitors back to your work.  Should something ever happen to these services, all the marketing materials you've ever put this information on are no longer accessible and people will not know how to find your work.  We won't go into the "right" ways to market your art with these services in this post but we'll save that for another time.


So, if a subdomain isn't your idea of a good long term marketing plan for your website, then a personalized domain is what you should be looking into.  A personalized domain is a "real" domain that you purchase from a registrar or third party service and looks something like yourname.com, faso.com or apple.com.  A personalized domain is owned by you[3] and can be configured to bring up your FASO website simply by changing a few settings.  


Benefits of a personalized domain include:

  • Professional looking
  • Can be taken with you regardless of your website hosting service
  • Can register a personalized email address (such as: [email protected])
  • Improves your Search Engine Optimization efforts (SEO)
  • Makes your email newsletters more likely to reach inboxes [4]


A personalized domain is key when it comes to setting up your marketing materials.  It becomes your permanent web address.  And, if you have a permanent web address, it no longer matters where your site is hosted.  You can take the personalized domain with you - materials that you've handed out in the past are still good and people that have bookmarked your site will still be directed to your work.  This is very important when it comes to finding your 20 people.  It also means that you can effectively market via Facebook, Pinterest or other social media by directing them all to one central address. 


Another good point to make in regards to being able to set up a personalized email address - just handing out your email address promotes your art.  When I see an email address such as [email protected], I know that person has a website and that I can find out more about them simply by typing yourname.com into my browser.  Truly a simple and unobtrusive way to market your art...


To get a personalized domain, you can purchase one via your FASO control panel.  In fact, if you're on our Gold plan, a personalized domain is included with your plan at no additional charge!  You can also get one from another registrar of your choosing.  Be aware that other registrars have different procedures on renewals, purchase cost/length, and you will be responsible for remembering to renew your domain before it expires.  The advantage when you register it via FASO is that we handle everything for you, so, for as long as you host your site with us, you don't have to worry about your domain.


Next time, we'll talk about your options if you already own a personalized domain.






[1] A "personalized" domain is just called a domain.  We added the word personalized here to make it super-clear that it means a domain name that is personalized to your professional name or business name.


[2]  There is a difference between the address bar and the search bar.  If you're not sure which is which, look at the top of your screen.  The bar that says http://nameofwebsite.com is the address bar.  The blank box with random search terms is the search bar.  An address bar will take you directly to that address, whereas a search bar will search for those terms and come up with eleven million choices. (Unless you're using Chrome as your browser - in that case, the search bar and the address bar ARE the same. That's only one of the reasons your editor likes Chrome so much.)


[3] If you're looking into a registrar that does not give you ownership of your domain, run the other direction.  You don't want to pay for a domain that someone else owns and controls.  Your art career is far too important to put into the hands of a stranger.  Domains registered via FASO are owned by you and should you want to transfer them elsewhere, our artist support agents will help you do so.


[4]  The reason having your own domain makes your email newsletters more likely to reach inboxes has to do with a complicated concept that ISPs use called domain reputation.  It's too complicated for this article, but, in short, you never want to send your email newsletters from a Gmail, AOL, Yahoo, etc account.  You want to have your own personalized email address that is properly configured for sending bulk mail.  If you register your domain through FASO, we handle all of the proper configuration for you.

14 Responses to Domains - A nuts and bolts lesson Part 1

Laurie Finkelstein
via faso.com
I appreciated the article on domains. Such a seemingly simple decision has long term ramifications, and proves the penny wise and pound foolish saying. I do have one question, and that is, how do I find out who I went with to register my domain name? I don't remember if I set mine up through FASO when I set up my website, or if I went through another service. My record keeping shows definite weaknesses. Thanks for your help.

Macia Hirschy
via faso.com
It would have been nice to know how much a domain costs! and how to get one.Marcia

Lee Ricks
via faso.com
Is it possible for me to get the personal domain LeeRicks.com instead of LeeRicksArt.com?

Troy Crowder
via faso.com
Thank you for the article on Domains. It was well written and handled the subject well, as well as answering any questions I had.

via faso.com
Hi Carrie,
Thank you for the article, very well explained. I do have a personal domain ChapleArt.com and I am a gold member. Will it be extra charge to get a personalized e-mail address?
Best, Mike Chaple

Carrie Turner
via faso.com
@Laurie - you go online to http://whois.sc/ to check on your domain.

It looks like you registered it through FASO. :-)

Carrie Turner
via faso.com

If you're on the Gold plan, you get one for free. Additional domains are $15.

Basic plans and lower, domain registrations are $15.

To register a domain via your FASO control panel:

Control panel
Manage Domains
Click here to check availability...
Follow the prompts

Carrie Turner
via faso.com
@Lee - If you go through the FASO control panel, when you click on check availability of a domain, if it's not available it will tell you so.

If it is available, you can follow the prompts to register it.

Should you want to go with the new domain and not use the original any longer, open a ticket with support and they'll make that change for you.

Carrie Turner
via faso.com

Gold plan members get 2 free personalized email addresses. Additional emails are $1.75 each.

Just click on the Personalized email link in your control panel and follow the prompts.

Laurie Finkelstein
via faso.com
Thanks so much, Carrie!

Bettina Star-Rose
via faso.com
Thank you so much, Carrie! This was very informative and helpful! Your article gave me a perspective that I had not looked at before!

Bonnie Hamlin
via faso.com
Carrie can you tell me how to transfer my domain name from where it's been for years to my FASO account?

Carrie Turner
via faso.com
@Bonnie -

To transfer your domain:

1. Log in to your FASO control panel
3. Click on Transfer Your Domain to FineArtStudioOnline Wizard (BETA)
4. Follow the instructions

Our software will ask you for your login info for your Manage Domain Registration Account at the company that currently holds the domain registration.

If you are unable to provide this info, please contact tech support.

Depending upon the complexity of the domain transfer, a transfer can take several days to weeks, and may involve accessing your domain account at your current domain registrar.

Complexities may arise from the following:
1. If you used a 'middle man' company to register the domain.
2. If you do not have access to the login info.
3. If you have a privacy setting on the domain, we may need login info for the Privacy Registration Company (like Domains by Proxy) as well.

The domain department will take over at that point and keep you updated on their progress.

Topics: FASO