Domain Name Confusion

Do you own your domain name? You probably think that you do, and you wouldn't be alone. Many people don't realise a few key facts about domain names, namely:

  • When you register a domain, you are just paying for the right to use it for the registration period.
  • If you asked a company to register it for you, and your email isn't there in the admin contact, you really have no control over the domain at all.
  • If you want to change or move the domain, it might cost you more than the domain itself.

So what can you do?
Well firstly, it is worth considering registering your domain for a longer period. Domains can be registered for up to ten years, and although you don't physically own the domain, it secured for a good long while. An added benefit is that according to many, Google takes this into account and a domain registered for a longer period has a little extra weight in the search engine rankings.

Secondly, find out if your domains are registered in your name. Use a site like www.who.is to check out the registered details for your domain and ask the company managing the domain to include you as a contact. Confirmations of control panel passwords, requests for transfer etc all have to go throught the Administrative contact, so if you want to have a say in your domain's future, it might be wise to check this out.

Having said this, it is not unusual for companies (like Libertas) to register and manage domains for clients through a central account, which means that a fair amount of domain details are in our name. However we are always happy to change the details if necessary, and there's no charge for doing so.

Before you register a domain - check and see if there are 'transfer away' charges or penalties. It may only cost you four pounds to register that domain, but what if you want to move it in a years time and it turns out there is a twenty pound charge to do so. Once you've purchased, there's no going back. Of course we don't have any hidden charges - once registered through www.nidomains.com you can do whatever you like with registered domains.

In fact from a registrar's point of view, the transfer is little more than a couple of clicks, and so the majority don't charge for this service. We've come across a couple though, both here in Northern Ireland and further afield, who either claim ownership of their client's domains, or charge punitive fees for release.

Of course you can avoid these problems by a)Purchasing domains from Libertas through our registration site at www.nidomains.com or b)Checking the small print before you buy.

If you have any questions about the points raised here, please do call us on 028 4483 8333 or use the contact page here on the site.

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