For all you non tech people out there, a domain name is anything after the @ in your email so for us it would be rekalltech.com. There have been countless situations we have seen where clients either come close or completely lose their domain names forcing them to buy a new domain name. Lets explain how this happens, domain loss repercussions and how to avoid this.
How Do Law Firms Lose Domain Names | People rarely pay attention to domain name renewal emails because they either miss them or don’t understand them and delete them. After a domain’s expiration date there is a grace period depending on your domain host may it be GoDaddy or Network Solutions. After this grace period your domain goes on the open market to be purchased. If someone purchases your domain you will lose it and may lose your website content as well.
Domain Loss Repercussions | When a domain name that has been in use for many years comes up for renewal, various people around the world are aware of this due to public internet record and purchase the domain name as soon as it becomes available. Their ultimate goal is to sell it back to you at a high profit, usually around $2,000. It’s not very nice, but it’s also not illegal. Your domain is connected to your website and email. Lost domains cause lost websites and email stoppages bringing your firm to a crawl. If your web admin did not backup your website, you may have to pay again to redo your website. On top of this you may be forced to to move email hosts to get your email flowing again, we’re talking a full email migration in some cases. These are all very costly repercussions that can easily be avoided by doing the following.
How Can Law Firms Avoid Domain Name Loss?
1. When you buy a domain, buy it for multiple years, 3 – 5. In this way you have confidence that you will not lose your domain name for at least 3 – 5 years.
2. When you purchase your domain, make sure you enable auto-renew. In this way when an domain comes up for renewal, as long as your credit card is good, your domain will auto-renew for a year.
3. Make sure the credit card you use has a long expiration date. If it expires in 6 months, your auto-renew will not work and you may lose your domain when it expires.
4. Make sure and setup a few emails for the domain notification system. People tend to miss email notifications from domain hosts about renewal but if you make it go to 2 or 3 of your email addresses the chance of you missing these emails are lowered, thus the chance of losing your domain is lowered too.
5. Domain expiration dates are setup when you purchase your domain, jot down the expiration date in your Outlook calendar with a 2 week reminder. In this way you will be reminded before the email reminder from your domain host regarding domain expiration.
I’ve been working with law firms for many years simplifying their technologies while offering them the very best services & support. The model that I have created is based on the reality that IT sucks, and frankly, no one likes it. My experience tells me that this is especially true for law firms. In coming to that realization years ago I had to change the way I did business. Among many other services that we had to offer, in order to cater to law firms specifically, we had to become invisible and that’s exactly what we have accomplished.