Who Owns Your Domain Name?
We’d like to help business owners by letting them know about simple marketing tasks they can easily complete in less than 5 minutes. Today, we’ll explain how to identify who owns your domain name and making sure it doesn’t expire. Let’s get started!
Why It’s Critical to Know Where Your Domain Is and Who Owns It
As a business owner, you have a long list of things to focus on. Your domain name might not be as high up on that list as it should be. However, this shouldn’t be put too far down on your to-do list. You see, domain registrations expire, which will cause your site to go down. You may be removed from results if your site goes down and Google recognizes that.
Renewing a domain only takes a few minutes, but that’s only if you own and manage it. If it’s outsourced, or you have no idea where it is, then this task could take a while – which will severely impact your Google rankings.
If you’re unsure who owns your domain, there’s a quick and easy way to potentially find out. Go to whois.com and search for your domain. You should be able to see its registration date, expiration date, and “Registrar” (highlighted below). The “Registrar” is the domain provider (i.e. GoDaddy, Network Solutions, etc.). If the domain isn’t set to “private”, then you should even see contact information for the person who registered it.
Ensuring You Have Direct Access to The Domain
If any information from whois.com indicates that you don’t own it, contact the person you think may have access to it. You’re in good shape if you trust them to manage and renew the domain name!
If the information from the whois.com results indicates that you own it, then you should ensure you have direct access to it. This can be done by visiting the domain provider’s (registrar’s) website and seeing if you have an account. You can do this by either attempting to log in or having a password reset sent to the email address you think was used to register it.
Expiration and Domain Renewal
Once you’re in the account, it’s important to check the domain’s expiration date. You may have registered it for anywhere from 1-10 years, but it’s still important to take note of that. It’s also a good idea to turn auto-renewal on and ensure the credit card on file will be active after the renewal/expiration date.
Bonus Tip: Closely Read Mail About Your Domain
You’ll know exactly who owns the domain and how to renew it by completing the steps above. As a result, you can confidently know that the mailers like the one below are not about your domain name. This one is actually about listing your site in an online business directory. However, upon a quick glance, it may look like the bill you need to pay to renew your domain name.
If you read the whole letter, the example above clarifies that it’s not to renew your domain name. However, other mailers from different companies suggest they own your domain name when they don’t – and it’s actually a scam.
This is how these types of fraudulent companies operate:
1: They check a database of domains that are expiring soon
2: They send a letter asking for a payment to renew your domain
3: If they receive the check, they will wait for the domain to expire and purchase it themselves. They will then have full ownership of the domain and it will be nearly impossible to get it back. Sometimes, people send the checks not realizing they actually owned it themselves and it’s automatically renewed every year. If this happens, getting your money back is nearly impossible.
If you’re interested in learning how Larchwood Marketing can help you manage your domain name, website, and many other aspects of your online presence – then give us a call or schedule a call with us through one of the buttons below!