February 20, 2016

Has Your Domain Name Registration Expired?

​​Has Your Domain Name Registration Expired?

I just had a client call me, and it wasn’t pretty. They were frantic because their website and email were down, and they had no clue why since they pay top-dollar for web services.

So, I jumped into action to confirm that all of their servers were running normally, and then – boom! I found the problem: their domain name registration expired because a former employee registered it under his personal email address and left the company a month ago.

Honestly, it’s one of the biggest mistakes we see small businesses make. They trust their entire tech portfolio to one employee and don’t bother to plan if this key worker moves on – or you show him the door for registering something so vital to his own Gmail account.

We got everything resolved in the end, but my client was essentially stuck trying to find that guy and hopefully accessed the registrar account to renew the company’s domain.

It’s not a situation you want to face because preventing a domain expiration is relatively straightforward if you set up everything correctly from the start.

 How to make sure your domain name registration doesn’t expire

One of the biggest mistakes small businesses make is forgetting to renew essential technology services before they expire. The good news is that nowadays, software-as-a-service providers make it as easy as possible to restore services with one click, but domain names are a bit different.

For starters, you can register domain names for as long as a decade if you’d like to “set it and forget it.” You should receive emails periodically when the expiration date approaches, which brings us to our first tip.

If you’re a business owner, make sure you have access to your domain’s registrar account

Don’t make the mistake of giving the keys to your car to someone who doesn’t care to drive for very long, yet that’s exactly what many small businesses do. They turn over their technology to one person and let them handle everything as they see fit.

It’s a nice, idealistic way to delegate responsibility, but what if this IT guy cuts corners, takes shortcuts, and makes it look like he’s working wonders? Some IT pros are great at doing just enough to keep the job as long as their boss is none the wiser.

The problem is that domain registrations contain sensitive, personally identifiable information, so registrars put extra safeguards in place, ultimately making it hard, if not impossible, to access an account without the proper log-in credentials.

Set the domain registration to auto-renew

So, to keep a domain name from expiring, set the domain to renew automatically at an interval you see fit. Depending on which registrar you choose, the cost to renew could be as low as $10 per year.

It’s an easy way to avoid the issue altogether, so why risk failed registration renewals, missed emails, inaccessible websites, and one severe headache?

I can help you set up your IT correctly from the start, so let’s talk about whether or not you’re ready for when your domain expires and what comes afterward.