What is a Domain Name?
Domain names are used to identify one or more IP addresses. For example, in the URL https://www.zapestore.com, the domain name is zapestore.com
Read more from Webopedia here.
When is a Domain Name needed on Shopify?
As the domain is the URL or website address of your store, by default, Shopify provides a primary domain using the format
If you'd like to personalize your store's URL, you can acquire a domain from domain registrars and change your store's domain through the Domains page in your Shopify admin.
Read more about Shopify's help article on Domains.
What is a Domain Registrar?
Domain name registrars manage the reservation of Internet domain names. There are several registrars to choose from:
COMMON DOMAIN ISSUES
I can't seem to access my site. What happened?
Check your set up within your domain registrar. Make sure that all the needed information is inputted correctly, in orer for your site to load properly.
It's also possible that your domain has expired and you would need to renew ASAP. Most domain registrars have a grace period to allow you to renew without risk of losing the domain to another buyer. Check the policies of your domain registrar to find out more, and how to go about renwals.
What can I do in the meantime?
You can set your Shopify online store domain to the default primary domain with the format
your-store-name.myshopify.com, so that your store is accessible to customers as you resolve your domain issue. You can change your store's domain through the Domains page in your Shopify admin.
To learn more, read this article from GoDaddy on common domain issues and possible fixes.
If you need more information, read this article from TinyDNS on other common domain issues and how to resolve them.