Getting Your Own URL
Your own URL - or web address - is a nice touch for any non-profit. The first thing to do is checking whether anyone else has already taken the address you like. That's easy.
To find if a name is available, click this button. It will open a new browser window right to BetterWhoIs. Type in any address (just the part after the www) you want to check into the box on that page and see if it's taken or available. If it's taken, you'll get a display of who the owner is including contact information and when the URL was taken. If not, you can decide whether to get it for your use.
Once you find a URL that's available and that you want to secure, you'll need to buy it. The cost is typically $100 for the first two years and $50 per year thereafter - a modest price if you want or need internet presence. But be sure to check the various organizations that will sign you up - some dramatic price breaks are possible. Many are listed on the right side of the BetterWhoIs site.)
Why your own URL rather than an e-mail address and web page on your current server - especially since they are often free? Good question. And there's a good answer.
Typically when you establish a web site at your service provider, part of your page's address is the name of your internet service provider or ISP. If you publicize the page and later want to (or have to) move to another ISP, your original web address won't work. On the other hand, once you have your own URL, you own it. And you can move it from one service provider to another as you see fit. And all the publicity you give it keeps working for you because the address is always the same.
M o r e S o o n !