How to Buy ENS Domains: 5-Min Guide!

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Owing an Ethereum Name Service domain (ENS domain) is highly convenient if you’re in the web 3.0 space.

I’d even say it is a must-have!

Why – you might ask?

Simply owning an ENS eth domain will allow you to replace the long and complicated string of letters and numbers that make up your web 3.0 wallet address with human-readable text!

This makes transferring in and out of your wallets much more accessible, along with other use cases like website domain names.

Despite its convenience, you may not know how to purchase an ENS domain – but it’s actually very straightforward if you follow the proper steps.

In this article, I will show you how to buy ENS domain names in 5 easy steps!

You can follow along as I buy my own ENS domain!

What is an Ethereum Name Service (ENS) Domain?

An ENS domain is a type of web 3.0 address that simplifies a complicated wallet address on the Ethereum blockchain into human-readable and more memorable text. An ENS domain will have a “.eth” ens name.

Essentially ENS domains map human-readable names to Ethereum wallet addresses.

Simply put, it’s an easy way to remember your Ethereum address – instead of long strings of characters and numbers, your wallet address will be replaced with a simple .eth name (or other available extensions).

Your address will be easier to share and more difficult to mistype.

Examples of Ethereum Name Service (ENS) domains include domain names like “hello.eth” or “world.eth”, which will represent the crypto wallet that they are individually bound to.

Please note that an ENS domain is different from a Domain Name Systems (DNS) domain!

ENS domain registrations are decentralized and purchased from ens.domain, whereas DNS domains are often centralized and can be purchased from a few main domain name companies.

What Can Ethereum Name Service (ENS) Domains Do?

An ENS domain or an eth domain can be used for a variety of purposes, but the most common ones are as follows:

  1. Cryptocurrency wallet address replacement. Instead of sharing long and complicated strings of text, you can simply share your ENS domain with others to transfer in and out of your wallets more securely. (i.e. “0x32…..672” to just “justjooz.eth”)
  2. Website domains. If you want to create a website related to cryptocurrency or blockchain technology, you can use an ENS domain as a custom domain name.
  3. Other applications and utilities such as token tracking, digital identity, and more.

How to Buy an Ethereum Name Service (ENS) Domain?

Now I’ll take you through the steps, one by one to purchase your own!

Alternatively, you can watch this video to learn more about how to buy your own ENS domain:

1) Pick a Supported Internet Browser for Ethereum

Metamask chrome extension

For starters, if you’re completely new to the world of web 3.0, I’d recommend using Chrome if you’re not already doing so.

Chrome is a browser that supports the MetaMask Chrome Extension, which we will be using for this tutorial. Make sure to make your own MetaMask wallet and transfer about $20 USD worth of ETH into it.

Moreover, if you are planning to interact with decentralized applications or web 3.0 services, having a MetaMask wallet will help you make transactions.

Make sure to download these two pieces of software (Chrome & MetaMask Chrome Extension) so that you can follow along!

2) Access the ENS Manager

Next, you’ll want to access this website, which is known as the ENS manager, where you’ll be able to search and look at what ENS domains are available.

3) Pick an ENS Domain and Select a Period

On the ENS manager home page, you’ll want to search for a suitable ENS domain that is suitable to your liking.

Do make sure that you take into consideration the ENS domain cost, as some will have higher ENS registration fees than others.

Most normal ENS domains will have a low cost, starting at around $10 USD for 1 year at the time of writing.

However, this will depend on the Gwei (gas fees incurred) when doing the transaction. Convert Gwei to ETH or ETH to Gwei using this calculator.

For this demonstration, I will be purchasing the ENS domain for 2 years!

Those ENS domains with more human-readable names tend to have a higher cost.

Note that when an ENS domain is available, you’ll see a green border on the left of your searched ens name. If you see a grey border, then the ens address you searched for isn’t available.

(Note that if you really want a particular ENS name, you can still purchase it on the secondary market on Opensea.io, if available)

When you pick an ENS domain that you want to register and that is available, you’ll be able to pick the period in which you want to own it.

Note that the ownership of your ENS domain won’t be forever, you’ll have to renew it reaches its expiration date, but don’t worry, you can choose to input your email so you won’t forget to renew it.

I found that although it may show that the minimum period is 1 year, you can go down into the decimals like “0.5” years if you’d like!

Shown below:

4) Confirm Registration of ENS Domain

Next, you’ll be confirming the registration of your ENS domain.

Please check the registration period and the spelling of your ENS domain. Once purchased, it can’t be reversed.

Click on “Request To Register”, then in the MetaMask Chrome Extension popup, select your preferred gas fee (transaction speed), and click confirm.

If you don’t know what gas fee to choose, just pick “average”.

At this point, don’t exit from the page or tab!

Wait for the registration to be finished. It will be checking on the blockchain to make sure no one is also in the process of registering the same domain name.

Wait patiently for the green bar to fill up to the right in the 3-step registration process!

Some text in orange “Click register to move to the 3rd step” will prompt you to click on the blue button on the right with the word “Register” on it.

Click on the “Register” button to confirm the registration of your ENS domain.

Then click on confirm on your MetaMask popup.

If you’re using a hardware wallet, follow the instructions on it to complete the transaction.

And… congrats! You have just bought your ENS domain…

BUT!

You’ll still need to bind your crypto wallet address to your ENS name in the next step so you can use it for transactions!

5) Bind Crypto Wallet Address to ENS Domain Name

Just a little longer and you’ll be ready to transact with your new ENS domain name.

You’ll see the following text appear at the bottom once the registration is done:

Click on “Remind Me” and you can choose to either receive an email or add a calendar event on iCal or Google Calendar.

Here’s what you need to do next:

Click “Set Primary ENS Name“, select the ENS name you just bought from the dropdown, and click “Save“.

You then need to sign a transaction on the blockchain through a popup on MetaMask. Note that you’ll be paying gas fees for this, but the signing won’t cost anything.

Hit “Confirm” and if you are using a hardware wallet, follow the necessary steps on your device to finish your transaction.

Hit “Save” and allow time for it to process.

Once the transaction is completed, you’ll be able to send and receive crypto and NFTs through your new ENS domain!

CONGRATS! 🎉

You can search your shiny new ENS domain on Etherscan, and it should reflect your resolved web3 wallet address!

What are the Differences between ENS and DNS domains?

ENS and DNS are both internet domains; the main difference is how they work.

DNS (Domain Name System) is a system that can be used to convert domain names into IP addresses. It’s made up of decentralized servers around the world that help computers connect to websites. DNS records are stored on servers across different countries.

On the other hand, ENS (Ethereum Name Service) is a decentralized name system based on the Ethereum blockchain. It helps users transact using a human-readable name instead of long and difficult-to-remember crypto wallet addresses. This helps save time when transferring funds or sending NFTs!

Another key difference is how they are registered. DNS domains have traditionally been registered through domain registrars, while ENS domains are registered directly on the Ethereum blockchain.

This means that when you register an ENS domain, it is stored permanently in the public ledger and can not be changed or modified by anyone else.

What is a DNS domain?

A DNS (Domain Name System) domain is how people navigate to a website. It is a human-readable address that is associated with an IP address.

Just an example: www.example.com can be associated with the IP address 193.183.207.12

When you type in the domain name, your computer or device will look up the associated IP address in its DNS table. It then connects to that website based on the IP address. DNS domains can create subdomains.

Final Thoughts

There you go! I hope you’ve learned how to buy an ENS domain all by yourself.

In the Crypto space, having a specific domain for your web3 wallet can help you send money and receive money with so much ease!

Be sure to keep your wallet safe at all times, just as how you would protect your bank account.

If you’re getting a web3 wallet like MetaMask, make sure you use it in conjunction with a hardware wallet such as Ledger or Trezor.

I personally use a Trezor hardware wallet, the Model T!

Also, if you’d like to purchase NFT domains you can keep for an indefinite amount of time, then read this article all about the best NFT domain marketplaces.

That’s it; thanks for reading, and all the best in purchasing and using your shiny new ENS domain! 🚀⛓️✨

Justin Chia

Justin is the founder and author of Justjooz. He is a Nanyang Technological University (NTU) alumni and a former data analyst.

Now, Justin runs the Justjooz blog full-time, hoping to share his deep knowledge of business, tech, web3, and analytics with others.

To unwind, Justin enjoys gaming and reading.

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