Blog / What is a Domain and what are its parts?

What is a Domain and what are its parts?

by SW Team

As a basic concept, a domain is a unique name that identifies a site on the web and indicates that it belongs to a certain category. We will use the domain "" for the examples below.

A domain is composed of several parts separated by dots. The domain "", is composed of two parts, the name "swhosting" and the extension "com". These parts have specific meanings:

  • Domain Name ("swhosting"): The domain name, or also known as the second level domain, is the unique identifier you select for your site. It can be any combination of letters, numbers or hyphens, but it must be unique in the context of the Internet.

  • Domain Extension or TLD ("com"): All domain names incorporate an extension that provides information about the type of website you are targeting. For example, a .com extension is generally associated with commercial websites, while .net is commonly used for technology and .info for informational sites. However, there are a wide variety of extensions available, each with a specific purpose.

How does a domain name work?

Domains play a crucial role in the functioning of the Internet, as they simplify web searches. Imagine having to remember a long string of numbers like the server's IP address every time you want to access a specific website. It would be quite a complicated and error-prone task. This is where domain names come into play.

By using a domain name like "", instead of an IP address like "", users can easily access the desired website without having to remember complex numbers. This makes the browsing experience much more intuitive and accessible for everyone.

Behind this process of translating a domain name into an IP address, DNS (Domain Name System) servers are in charge. When you enter a domain name in your browser, a request is made to a DNS server that looks up and returns the corresponding IP address, allowing your browser to connect to the correct server and load the requested website.

What extensions are available?

There are currently a wide variety of extensions available. These are classified into three groups: TLDs or Top Level Domains, Second Level Domains and Third Level Domains or Subdomains.

  • TLDs or Top Level Domains: These domains are at the top level of the Internet domain name system and rely solely on the root or dot (".") in their structure. The most common include .com, .org, .net and .edu, each with a generally associated purpose, such as commercial sites, non-profit organisations, networks and education, respectively.

  • ccTLDs or Country Code Top Level Domains: These domains use two letters as the domain extension and are based on international country codes, such as .es for Spain, .jp for Japan, .mx for Mexico and .co for Colombia. They are commonly used for companies creating websites dedicated to specific regions.

  • gTLDs or Generic Top Level Domains: gTLDs are similar to TLDs, but do not rely on a country code. Although initially intended for specific use cases, many can now be used without restriction. Examples include .mil (military), .gov (government), .org (non-profit organisations), and .net (network), among others.

  • sTLDs or Sponsored Top Level Domains: These domains are targeted at a particular organisation or sector and are not managed by ICANN, but by private organisations. Examples include .travel (sponsored by Tralliance Corporation), .tel (sponsored by TelNic Ltd) or .aero (sponsored by SITA).

  • ngTLDs or New gTLDs: These are gTLDs introduced after October 2013 when ICANN allowed the creation of new domain extensions. With more than 1500 new extensions, this market has expanded significantly, allowing extensions such as .cloud, .club, .photography, among others.

  • Second Level Domains: These domains are located directly below a top-level domain and are the result of the combination of a gTLD and a ccTLD. For example, UK companies occasionally use instead of .com. Other examples are for government institutions and for academic institutions and universities in the UK.

  • Subdomains or Third Level Domains: Subdomains are additional extensions of a domain that we create from a string and a domain. For example, to access the web, as a link to the FTP server or to manage mail from the web. They are generally used to manage different areas of the same infrastructure.

If you want to learn more about domains and how they work, we recommend that you read the following manuals for more details:

Finally, if you are interested, you can check the domain extensions we offer along with their prices and choose the one that best suits your project.