Many businesses want a presence on the World Wide Web. Technically, every website is connected with a certain numerical address which is slightly similar to a telephone number. However, most people prefer words and texts to remember addresses. Therefore, the Domain Name System (DNS) was invented which connects addresses with numbers.
Every address (or domain) must be unique and in theory everybody can claim every address. These domains are administered by an international organisation and national organisations who focus on different forms (such as .com; .org; .eu; .de; .bg; .fr). Usually an Internet Provider or Domain Name Provider is in contact with all or several of these organizations which makes it easy for a business or customer to purchase any address.
When choosing a domain name one needs to first check which possible names exist. There is the possibility to legally claim already existing domain names before they are given up by their current possessors. Instead of a court procedure often settlements with current owners are made to avoid losing time.
Legal claims can be brought in front of a court on the basis of already existing protection of Intellectual Property Rights (such as copyrights, trademarks, etc.). Additionally, the current possessor of the domain must be able to show a personal link to the domain name.
Once you have found an address you like, you can register it easily through a chosen Domain Name provider or Internet Provider. The fees for registering and keeping an address (typically annual fee) are usually low. Remember that it might be useful to register more domains at a time if they are free even if you or your business does not intend to use them immediately.