The bigger and more popular your website is, then the bigger the losses if your domain name expires and you lose control of it. So you must never ignore the concept of Domain name expiration. In addition, if that person who buys the domain name after it expires is pretty savvy, then he or she may charge you a lot of money to sell it back to you. A popular expired name may be sold several times in a week as you chase it around trying to get it back.
What is your domain name?
It is an identification string that is used on the Internet. There is a whole domain name system that has to be followed on the Internet, and any name that is registered within the system is a domain name. A domain name is often used to identify a website, but it has more functions than just being a website identifier. But, within this article, you may assume that it simply means the identifying name for your website that is used in web browser address bars to find your website. Further comments into the uses and functions of a domain name are not relevant to this topic.
How does it expire?
Let’s assume that you create your own domain name and register it with a certain company. When you pay your money, the company will tell you how long you are buying the registration for. The most common period of time is two years. You then own that domain name for two years and may identify your website content with that domain name on the Internet. Once those two years are over then the domain expires and the domain name goes back onto the open market.
What happens if it expires?
The domain name goes onto the open market and other people are allowed to buy it. If someone wished to purchase your website domain name whilst it was in your name, then they would be informed that the name was already taken.
Do other people get my website if they buy my expired domain name?
No, they just get your domain name. The content of your website and even the name of your website are still yours. You still own the rights to the name of the website and the content in it, but the domain name is purchased by another person. You will be unable to use that domain name unless you purchase the domain name back again (or renew it in the first place).
What is a renewal grace period?
This is a very common phenomenon where the domain expires, but the registrar gives you some time after expiry to purchase the renewal. Otherwise, the domain name goes onto the open market where anybody may purchase it. The grace period has saved many big companies, including Microsoft forgot to renew their hotmail.co.uk domain name for over two weeks after it expired.
Buying back your domain name from the open market is expensive
This is especially true if the person who bought your domain name has a good idea of how much it is worth to you. The person who buys it on the open market may charge whatever he or she wishes, and if he/she knows you are desperate then the price is going to shoot up.
80% of expired domain names are bought within two hours by domain snipers
Some people monitor website domains to see when they expire. They watch them and then purchase them when they hit the open market. They take advantage of the fact that some people forget to renew their domain names. That is why over 80% of expired domain names are purchased within two hours. This is because the snipers know they can make a profit by selling it back to the original creator of it.
Most providers send reminders
Very few registration companies do not send reminders. Many of them send a reminder weeks before the domain name expires. This means that you should keep your contact details up to date. In a similar way, you should also keep your details up to date on the Whois register. This makes it easier for the registry company to remind you that you need to renew your domain name.
Choose automatic renewal options
If your domain registrar has automatic renewal options then you should seriously consider taking them up. The only problem is that your bank card often expires every few years, so you have to keep renewing them too if you want your automatic payments to go through.
Set extended renewal periods of five to ten years
If you are sure that your website is going to be successful and maintained, then buy an extended period of five to ten years. This is better done during the renewal period when you are given the option and when you can be surer of your website’s future success. At least this way, you do not have to worry about renewing for quite a while, just be sure that it is not forgotten about when the time does come to renew.
Renew ahead of time and do not wait until the last week
Waiting until the last week is often why people forget to renew, or why circumstances make them forget. You could be struck ill in the last week and may be unable to renew, or your IT department may go on strike during the last week. It is better if you renew slightly ahead of time in order to avoid any problems.