Domains FAQ

What is a domain name?

A domain name is the address of your website on the Internet. Domain names are usually made up of easy-to-remember words. The name is displayed in the address bar of the web browser and is connected to a specific IP address.

What is a subdomain?

A subdomain is a subset of a larger domain. It can be used as a simple way to create a more memorable web address for certain topics or sections within a website. For example, create a subdomain for the 'help' section and provide direct access to this page through the subdomain ‘'

What is a top-level and a second-level domain?

A domain consists of different components. The ‘top-level domain’ (TLD) is part of the actual domain name such as ‘.com’, ‘.de’ or ‘.net’. A second-level domain is a page name such as the ‘xyz’ in It is the name purchased from your domain provider. It does not contain a prefix, such as www.

What is a domain provider?

A domain provider (also called a domain host) is an organization that manages the reservation domain names on the internet. When you buy a domain from a domain provider, they will register it for you. Popular domain providers include GoDaddy, 1&1 and ENOM. Fees for your domain are usually paid on a subscription basis, either monthly or yearly.

How can I find out who my domain provider is?

There are many tools available online which allow you to look up details related to a domain. For example, GoDaddy – one of the most popular domain providers – allows you to look up these details on their site here. You can find the name and URL of your domain provider listed under ‘Registrar’.

What is a DNS?

DNS stands for Domain Name System and is a system that points a domain name to a physical IP address. When a user types ‘’ in their browser and hits enter, the DNS servers direct it to the IP address where the website is hosted.

IP addresses are Internet Protocol addresses and have numerical labels assigned to each device connected to the internet. They allow computers to communicate with each other over the internet.

Every domain has a single entry in the system to organize domain names and translate them from words to numbers. This system operates in the background.

A Domain Name System (DNS) is also described as DNS settings, DNS records or Resource records, depending on the provider you bought your domain through.

What is an A record?

The ‘A’ in A record stands for Address and points a domain to a computer’s IP address. When the domain name is then typed into your web browser, the A record knows how to access the website. In some cases, an A record is called an address record or host record.

What is a CNAME record?

CNAME stands for Canonical Name record and is a type of record in the Domain Name System (DNS). It is used to specify that a domain name is an alias for another domain (the canonical domain).

Both the A and CNAME records are common ways to map a domain name to an IP address. The A record points a name to a specific IP, while the CNAME record points a name to another name.

What is a MX record?
A Mail Exchange (MX) record is part of the DNS system and is necessary to deliver email using your domain. If you use your email with your domain (e.g. it is important that the MX records point to the correct location. Otherwise, the email will not be delivered. In order to get help and support with the setup of your MX records, please contact your domain provider.

What is email forwarding?

Email forwarding allows you to resend an email automatically, from one email address to another one. This can be especially helpful if you use services such as Outlook, Gmail or Yahoo as your primary email service. This functionality will allow you to receive emails through an email address related to your domain via In order to set this up, please look for the configuration at your domain provider or contact them directly.

If you have email forwarding already enabled for your domain, and you would like to connect your domain to a WebDirect website – make sure you do not change your existing MX record settings. Otherwise, your emails may not be delivered correctly.

What is “WHOIS”?

WHOIS is a service that allows you to find general information about a registered domain. This includes details such as the domain owner, domain registrar, expiration date and contact details of the owner.

Some domain providers allow owners to hide certain personal details. In these cases, the personal details are replaced by the ones of the registrar or hosting company. This service is mostly known as ‘WHOIS privacy’, ‘Privacy protection’ or ‘Domain privacy’.

What is ICANN?

ICANN stands for Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers and is an organization that manages and administers Domain Name Systems, as well as other internet protocols.