Domain Ownership

Domains – Do You Own Your Online Presence?

Imagine typing in your website’s URL or domain name into your browser and you get an error message or your emails suddenly stop coming through …. How will this impact your business?

Make sure this doesn’t happen to you by simply ensuring the ownership of your domains are yours. If you have a .co.za domain, go to http://co.za and if you have a .com domain, go to www.whois.sc.

In the results, look for the name of the “Registrant” – this must be either your name or your Company’s name – non-negotiable! If this is anyone else’s name, you have a potential problem because that person/organization can shut you down immediately – particularly if you have a fall-out!

You can’t even move your website or emails anywhere else, unless you are the Registrant – it’s that important.

The other recommendation is that you control the “Billing”. You pay the annual subscription to the registrar. In this way, you ensure your domains doesn’t get suspended for non-payment. You can also set your domains to auto-renew for convenience.

The administration and technical areas can be left in the control of someone else.

Now, if you need to get the Registrant name changed, send off a VERY polite email to the registered Registrant and ask for the change to be done – hopefully he/she is still in business! If you get no joy, dig in your heels and make this happen. You can force the change through the registrar but this will take time and a lot of ‘red tape’ to go through.

One major client of mine, thought they were safe – until their website went down. Then they discovered that they weren’t the Registrant, their web hosting had changed and their domain had not been renewed. It was a .com domain and someone ‘bought’ it when it became available – yes, there are ‘scaly’ people lurking on the internet. To cut a long story short, it cost my client over $90 to buy back the domain name and it took 3 months to get back on line. The loss in earnings were affected by this.

So you are warned – don’t be too trusting. You can go directly to Uniforum or a reputable .com domain registrar, like Namecheap (the one I’ve used for a few years), to register your domain names. You don’t need a third party to do this.

By the way, it’s advisable to have a unique domain name ie not john@mweb.co.za or pam@telkomsa.net. Mweb or Telkom can still host your unique domain name. Tell the marketplace what you do in your domain name eg info@the-marketing-guru.com or info@fpkeynotespeakercom!

I’d love to have your input and questions … as I’m sure many others would, so let’s have your comments below.

About the Author Fran Piggott

Adding value, building trust, creating your awareness, making sales for you. Read my story

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