Best Practices Tips—Your Website Domain
At BxB Media, collaboration is at the core of our business model. When your team and our team work together via Team Lift, we can help you meet your goals and lift your company.
A best practice we always use for our clients, and we recommend for all companies, is that you own and control your domain name(s). There are some marketing and web development combines out there who register their clients’ domains in their names—and this is a big red flag. We have had companies lose their domain because they were working with a web developer who would not give them ownership of their domain.
First, don’t work with someone who is going to own your company domain. Second, it is imperative you take control and maintain your domain name(s) for security, consistency, and success.
At BxB, we have seen it all, and this article was written to help inform you about domain names and how to best manage them.
Why Your Domain Is Your Domain
Before we cover best practices, it may be helpful to define what we mean by domain, which some confuse with URL.
A common way of describing a website domain name is comparing it to your company’s physical address—where your mail comes or what shows up in GPS. Your website domain is similar in that if someone wants to visit your website, they type your domain name in their browser to get there.
In contrast, a URL (Universal Resource Locator) is a web address directing someone to a specific page on your website. If we think of your domain as your company’s address, then the URL could be the address for each person’s office.
You Need to Manage Your Business Domain Name
At BxB, we always keep domain names registered in our client’s name, which means if you are our client, you need to manage it! An important part of management is tracking your domain’s expiration date and knowing when a renewal payment is due.
Registration can be every year or you can buy it for multiple years. If you let the domain expire, your website and email will go down. We recommend you buy your domain out for at least five years, and ten would be even better. Domain registration is a low cost, and it’s not going to hurt to buy years in the future—but it really hurts when your website and email go down!
Also, it’s critical to keep the renewal date somewhere safe and to set a reminder to renew it. This will help protect you from having your site go down or losing your domain all together.
Another part of domain management is knowing where the domain is registered, e.g., GoDaddy. If you don’t know where yours is registered, you can use this resource tool to check, If you’ve purchased your domain from another company, the prior company may own it. This is invaluable information to know in advance of its renewal date.
A warning though. When you have access to your domain data, unless you are an IT person and know exactly what you’re doing, we recommend not touching any technical information. You can cause problems by changing the DNS (Domain Name Servers). Be sure someone in your company with technical knowledge is who you appoint to access your renewal information and designate as contact for renewal within your company.
Being savvy about your domain management also helps prevent you from succumbing to any guerrilla marketing tactics that might come your way. For example, if you know your domain renewal is June 13, 2028, when you receive an email from a marketing company in October 2024 stating your domain is expiring and you need to click on a button for help, you won’t fall for it.
Lastly, be sure your domain payment methods are up to date. We’ve had clients whose domain payment methods expired, which caused their domain renewals to fail. As mentioned earlier, in these cases, not only did the clients’ websites stop working, so did their email. Unfortunately we can’t do anything on our end to prevent this except to remind you to keep your payment options current.
Luckily there is a grace period, so it’s highly unusual you will actually lose your domain name. At BxB, we monitor our sites so we are notified as soon as a site goes down, and it will be caught early and can be remedied quickly. Unfortunately if you are not paying attention and you go beyond the grace period, you could lose your domain—we have seen it happen.
Contact BxB for More Details
If you want any clarification on these recommended best practices, or would like to know more about the finer points of your domain, you can talk with your BxB Marketing Coach.