You have a business, and now that business needs a website. So you settle on a domain name (like abccompany.com) you like, but don’t know how to build a website. You find someone who can do that for you, and boom – your business is online!
It’s a pretty easy cycle, or at least it seems that way. We know that dealing with websites can be scary territory if you’re not familiar with all the nitty-gritty details. Leaving those details in the hands of your web designer makes it simple for you to get on with the business you know.
But there’s one thing that you won’t want to leave to your website providers. When it comes to the domain name, you want to make sure that it stays within your control. We want to address why you need to do that, and how such a tiny detail can affect your business.
Domain Name Ownership
Believe it or not, it’s super easy to buy your own domain name. For instance, we use Hover.com when we’re looking at new domain names. Their process is simple and easy to follow – Find the domain name you want, add it to your cart, purchase it, and that’s it. The process is easier than buying something on most retailer websites, and they even offer free WHOIS protection, keeping ownership information private and out of view.
Leaving it up to your web provider can cause some serious issues. Mainly, one issue – that domain name doesn’t truly belong to you. Sure, typing the domain into your internet browser will bring up your website. But if for some reason your relationship with your website provider deteriorates, that domain name will be long gone. In some cases, they may work with you long enough to transfer ownership to you, but even then the process is completely on their terms.
And yeah, you can buy a new domain name, but that can have negative effects on your business that you didn’t anticipate.
What Can Go Wrong?
We believe in addressing the most obvious problem first: Letting someone else purchase your domain name gives them complete control over it. While you and your provider are in sync, issues usually won’t arise. However, if you begin attempting to move away from them, they could very well move that domain name anywhere they want or worse, they are technically the owner listed for the domain and can choose not to move it. Not to get morbid here but if they were to die or disappear and they bought the domain name and registered it in their name, you will be facing a tedious battle to try and retain that domain name.
This leads into the second downside: Not only would you immediately need a similar-enough domain to continue building your business, but you’d lose on any marketing already done with that domain name. This includes SEO. All the hard work put into ensuring your domain popped up right where you needed it to is wiped away, meaning that you’ll see a huge loss in traffic. This would all be on top of the wait for a new website to be developed and built, putting a further dent in your web traffic.
While all of that is bad enough, they intersect in the perfect storm of lost web business: Your new website would be in direct competition with your old one. The two domains would be seen next to each other while you attempt to rebuild on your SEO strategies, which could cause confusion for customers while at the same time weakening all the work you’ve already done for your business online.
What to Do About It
It’s easy: Buy your own domain name! Google it, research it, and get it before you work on building your website. Don’t leave this seemingly tiny task in the hands of your website provider. You want to control your website, and the only way to be absolutely sure of that is to own the domain name.
Are you ready to take on the most important part of building your website? You can buy your domain name with ease and efficiency at Hover.com. I vouch for them, since I use them myself – and that actually knocks a little off the price!
Go to Hover.com
Search for your domain name (like abccompany.com) and then create an account, pay the registration fee, then point it to your web hosting.
Taking these super easy steps will give you lots of peace of mind knowing that one of your most valuable business assets has been secured using your info and credit card. You control it and pay for it, and it’s yours as long as you pay your yearly renewal.
PRO TIP- I always tell my clients to add this event as an event on their personal and business calendars. Hover is particularly great about sending reminders to renew, but I never want to 100% count on someone else’s system to ensure my interests. Do it when you complete your registration and sleep like a baby.
Victory Harbin is one of the owners of The Social Brand and is a content strategist. She helps people be smart about using content to get the best results to grow their business.