So you want a sweet & fresh looking domain name ? Congratulations, you just joined the list of around 115million such aspirants.
With so many domains already registered, there isn’t really much scope for you to carve out the perfect domain, or is there? Well this guide is exactly for the same purpose, to help you build a Brand out of your domain, and not just another blog, which no one gives a shit about.
When you’re buying a domain name, you definitely are thinking long term, right? No one gets a domain for couple months, well so if you’re investing so much of your time in that, you might as well just invest it better.
I’ll be listing some of the major cautions you need to take before finalizing your next domain name, because a “lot”, and I repeat, a lot depends on your choice.
Topics I’ll cover:
- Fees’ related to domains:-
- Transferring fees
- Whois Update Fees
- Whois Services
- Domain Renewal Schedule.
- Domain slamming.
- Transfer lock.
- Domain Parking.
- URL Forwarding.
- TLD extensions.
- Terms and Conditions.
Fees’ related to the domain:
A domain comes with a lot of fees’ right? No I’m not talking about just the domain purchase amount, here’s what you need to look out for while getting your next domain:-
- Transferring Fees:
Okay so you have a domain with some registrar, and you need to move to some other registrar due to certain causes. What you expect is, you should be able to move the domain without any additional charges, but this is not the case every time.
Some domain providers tend to charge extra for domain transfers, and it’s most of the times a lot higher than the original domain registration.
How to prevent this:-
- Go through the Terms & conditions of the provider, I know it’s tiring but it’ll save you a lot of headache.
- If you already have been charged, just call you Credit Card or Debit Card Company, and they would refund you the amount as it’s an illegal practice by the standards of International ICANN registration.
- Whois Update Fees:
So while registering the domain name, you’ve set up your name or your companies, and there might always be a chance that you might want to change it in the future.
Some domain registrars take the benefit of people not reading the T&C and go one with disclaiming that there will be a fees when you try to update the Whois.
Or in the least, a lock down period of 60days before your Whois update intervals. I mean, its your domain right? You should be able to edit it as many times as you want, so just get along the T&C or read our list of Domain providers at the end of this post who don’t get you in this kind of mess.
- Whois Services:-
Domain Providers like Bigrock and Godaddy offer you services like Whois protection, or Private Registration, which technically means that your Domain registration details won’t be available to the public on the WhoisRecord. It’s not a bad thing though, right?
What is a bad thing , most people don’t exactly know what it is . When you opt in for this, your provider retains all rights to the domain as it’s owner. Means, to the Whois database, they register their own names and thus they are the owners. No matter what you claim , or in which court, they are gonna win.
So if you own a domain that’s generating lot of revenue ( a lot = 10-20K$ a day ) and if the domain provider isn’t as much reputed, you should change it right now, and opt out of that service. Because legally, the domain provider has the rights to claim every single penny of the domain and the domain itself.
- Domain Renewal Schedule:
When you register a new domain , most of us buy it for more then one year, right? Well because it counts as a ranking metric, how long a domain is registered for.
Domain age is a crucial factor, isn’t it? Also you get a discount when you purchase it for longer term.
But here’s what happens if you’re unfortunate, the domain registrar has a “Yearly Renewal” policy, and thus no matter for how many years you pay them, they update your domain only for the next year, and then again the next year. But not for all the years at once, and that hurts.
So in order to be in the safe side, do read the T&C and use a free tool like Whois to verify the real expiration date of your domain.
- Domain Slamming:
Are you one of those troubled customers who started receiving tons of mails and calls, just after registering a new domain name from different service providers like Webhosting and SSL?
Well if that’s the case, you’re a victim of Domain Slamming, like many, others.
Well this happens for two reasons first that your domain provider was looking for some extra bucks, and sold the info like your email address, or cell numbers.
And second that the info was harvested by bots and sent to your callers.
This info is not only used to make calls, but also to scam you for a renewal notice, or any other service. In short, it’s what domain slamming is.
How to not get Domain Slammed:-
There’s a free service called – Myprivacy.ca . Which protects your data from being slammed by automated bots.
- Transfer Lock
Well, this is also known as “registrar lock “, and the main purpose of it was to, protect you from being Domain Slammed.
Because, one of the major tactics of domain slammers was making you click on an email, and transferring your domain automatically to them. But well, with the transfer lock active it’s not possible for anyone to Transfer your domain to any other provider.
So why am I listing it here? It’s a good thing right? Well here are couple things to check regarding registrar lock:-
- Will it be active automatically once you register the domain?
- Will you have the control to turn it on or off by yourselves?
- Is there a time period after which it’s turned off, or needs extra payments or anything of such sort?
If the domain provider doesn’t let you control it from your end, and is demanding extra payments, then you’re in bad company.
How to add your security over Domain transfers:-
Well, if you’re on .org .biz or .info, then there’s good news for you. These domains have an EPP code, it’s an 8 character long code that must be supplied before the domain can be transferred.
So well while transferring your domain name, just ask your provider for the EPP and they will provide it to you. If you are on any other top level domain then I’d say you should stick to the above listed precautions.
- Domain Parking (Million$ Biz).
Well, what is domain parking?
Ever noticed a page like the below screenshot?
Well it’s a parked domain, a domain with a lot of ads, and a search button (this is optional). Those ads pay the domain owner thousands of bucks a month for the listings.
Now here’s the thing, you don’t actually get a lot of money from a single parked domain, but what if you could park 1000-5000 domains? Yes, I’m talking about couple million dollars.
You don’t have so many domains, I don’t too. Who does? Domain Providers.
Yes, so here’s what happens. You buy a domain, and if you’re not using it, the domain provider will park it’s ads there. You will be paying for a domain name, off which someone else is making millions.
And in the worst case scenario, you’ll have to pay in order to let the domain provider park you your own domain. Yes, for those who don’t know, domain parking is a “profitable business”, so of course you don’t need to be paying anything for it, instead there are a lot of parking services that would pay you for that.
So, be careful who you do business with. And if you want to park you domain, check out Domain Parking Services.
- URL Forwarding:-
You can get a domain name for as low as $0.22 or as high as $6 per year. Now you’d be wondering, why?
Do you think those domain providers are here for social service? Of course not, it’s business right? Those who’re offering domains for the cheapest prices, often sell pop ups, or pop unders on your free forwarded URL, and make money from it.
You’d be wondering why no one likes your website. Well, no one likes a ton of ads popping up and around. So make sure you choose a reputed domain name, just for the sake of couple cents, don’t ruin your career.
- TLD Extension
.com .org .net etc. are All TLD’s (Top level domain). While registering a domain name there are two mistakes most people make:-
- Don’t worry about the TLD and just take any one that’s available to the domain of their choice. For eg if yourdomainname.com isn’t available, they satisfy themselves with yourdomainname.in , but in the long run it greatly affects your overall online presence as .in or .ca will be a locally targeted domain to either (India) or (Canada) and thus in the Search Engine results the SERP is affected.
- The second mistake is that you don’t check if your domain name is already registered on any other TLD or not. For eg if you want something.com there’s a huge chance that something.in might already be owned by someone else. Having two exactly same domains greatly affects your branding and thus it’s a must for you to check that the domain is available on most TLD’s.
Also, if possible, try to grab as many extensions of your domain as possible, like .com .in etc. It increases your authority and branding.
- Terms & Conditions:
This is the most crucial part of this whole of a article you just read above.
Either it be the transfer out fee, whois lock or anything else. Every little detail (unnatural detail) is most of the times buried deep down in the T&C f the registrar, in order to protect themselves if a legal dispute arises.
So it’s always advised that yes even if the T&C is a very long piece of text, do read it. It’ll save you a lot of confusion, and a better lot of money .
Buying a domain name isn’t the hard work, all you need to do is pay up the money and grab it.
The real task lies in researching the past, present, and future of the domain. And in order to do that, you need to consider all the points listed above, and verify that all of them are in your favor and not that of Domain Provider.
So that was it. Was there any other problem you had with your registrar? Feel free to let me know in the comment box, I’m all ears.