Tips to Avoid Domain Name Nightmares

By February 16, 2009Strategy

True story: Client calls BTM World Headquarters first thing Monday morning and states that over the weekend his company’s email and website suddenly went down! He called the company who hosted his website, email and domain name and the company is out of business. What to do?

First, I checked out the domain name for the client, and noticed that the registration was private so all it displayed in the WHOIS was the Go Daddy Private Registration information. Next, I called Go Daddy and for security purposes, they required that I had the Pin number or the last 4 digits of the credit card on file. Needless to say, I didn’t, so I asked him what to do next.

He directed me to the Go Daddy page to fill out a form Request for Change of Account / Email Update Form to begin the process to change ownership back to the true owner. Once the form is filled out Go Daddy requests a 72-hour turn-around because they get so many requests. Go Daddy will notify you through the e-mail address you provided on the form.

The next nightmare is trying to convince the Registrar that you really do own the domain name. Each Registrar is a little different, each have their own set of privacy rules, forms to fill out, proof of ownership, etc. During this time, your website is down, your email has stopped, and your business internet marketing has come to a complete halt!

This of course is a worst case scenario but nonetheless true. Registrars are usually very helpful as they want to retain your business. Here are a few steps you can take to prevent losing or letting your domain name expire.

  1. Registrant Information – If you purchased your domain name through a registrar make sure the Registrant information is in your company name, your address and your valid email address.
    Billing Contact – your name, address and a valid email address.
    Technical Contact – should be the company where your domain is hosted or your name, address with a valid email address.
  2. Registrar Account – Where did you buy your domain name? Make sure you have your account login ID and password in a safe place. If you do not have your login id call your registrar and retrieve it. By keeping the email address at your registrar valid you can easily retrieve your login ID/username and password through the email address you have listed in the account.
  3. Domain name expiration date – If you plan on keeping your domain name active for years to come invest in it and renew it for several years. Registrars usually will give you a better deal if you renew the domain for multi years. Or have auto renew enabled for your domain name with a valid credit card on file.
  4. Domain Name Managers – Many hosting companies are also domain name registrars. Managers will make sure your domain does not expire and will probably renew from year to year. With the slowing economy if you feel uncomfortable at all with your current hosting company I would suggest to follow steps 1-3 to ensure you are in control of your domain name.

WHOIS will give you all the information you need to know about your domain name. The Registrant, Contact information, the Registrar Company name where the domain was purchased and the domain name expiration date. Click on the link and see who is in control of your domain name: http://www.networksolutions.com/whois/index.jsp

Blue Tent Marketing is a Registered Domain Name Reseller. We have purchased hundreds of domains for our clients. We can help you transfer, purchase a new domain name, manage and renew your existing domains for you. Blue Tent Marketing has helped many clients who unexpectedly let their domain’s expire or who have experienced a bad registrar to help them retrieve lost login information or renew your domain name. Let us help you in securing you’re existing domain names or next domain name purchase.

Moira
Director of Technology

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