The domain name is something we are all familiar with. If you want to visit a website, it is the website url that you type in. Ownership over that domain is something that companies and individuals pay a premium for. The significance of owning a domain like Nike.com enables Nike to control their intellectual property in a way that is familiar and accessible to consumers, not to mention it’s easy to find. In the early days of the internet, websites had IP addresses which made it difficult to easily visit a website. Domain Name Service (DNS) allowed the websites we are familiar with today to convert their IP addresses into readable text.
As the age of the internet continues and Web 2.0 evolves into Web 3.0, it is important to consider what the future of the internet will look like for online storefronts, brands, entrepreneurs, and artists.
With the progression of web 3.0 technologies like cryptocurrency, decentralized marketplaces, and decentralized autonomous organizations (DAO) comes the need for a name service that makes crypto addresses memorable and quickly identifiable.
Otherwise known as Ethereum Name Service, the ENS offers a secure way to translate the Ethereum addresses a user has into a text that is easily searchable from human memory. As of right now, ENS domains end in ‘.eth’ and can be registered at ens.domains. When creating an Ethereum wallet, users are given a long string of generated numbers and letters that they are able to send their Ethereum assets to and from. The difficulty with this is that these addresses are too difficult to memorize and use consistently. When registered, the ENS resolves the address and becomes the identifier for the specific address that the wallet is registered to.
Before you get started you will want to have a small amount of ETH to pay the transaction and ENS registration fees associated with the ‘.eth’ domain you want to acquire.
You will need an Ethereum-enabled browser to access your crypto wallet. If you do not have a crypto wallet, you can set up yours by following this guide here.
In order to access the ENS registration application, you must be signed in to your Ethereum browser with the same wallet that you want to have the ENS name registered to. (Note: If you register the ENS name to one address and you want to transfer it in the future, you can do that).
Once connected to the ENS registration app, start by searching for your desired ‘.eth’ name. When searching for a name, you will get one of two prompts: Available or Unavailable. If the name is unavailable you will be able to see the address that registered it and when the expiration date is. If the address is available you will be prompted with a way to register the domain and pay for the number of years that you would like to register the domain for. You can always log back into the ENS provider to extend the time that you have the ENS registered for so that it does not expire.
This is the step that you will need to use your crypto wallet to sign the transaction. In order to register the ENS name, you will need to pay the registration fee associated with the name as well as for each year that you would like to register it for. You will need to wait for the ENS app to confirm your registration to make sure that no one else is trying to register the same name at the same time.
Congratulations, you are now a registered ENS owner.
A recent update now allows the owner of a DNS domain name to import the same name for use on an ENS name. The integration allows for the ENS name to be used for many more applications, including portable web3 username and profiles, payments in any cryptocurrency, and decentralized websites. This allows ENS to be a complete key to the future of web3.
In addition, ENS domains are registered to the ERC-721 standard which allows them to function as an NFT. This utility allows you to treat ENS names the same way as you treat NFTs—meaning that you can buy, sell, trade, and transfer to other wallets, accounts, and exchanges.
With an ENS name, you will never have to worry about entering the wrong wallet address, and it will allow other users throughout the world of crypto to easily interact with you.