Over the years, one of the most common ways we’ve seen companies run into trouble with their website investment is to allow the contact information for their domain name to become outdated. If your domain registrar doesn’t have a valid email address on file you could have some problems down the line.
The best-case scenario is that your domain expires because you didn’t receive your renewal notices, and your website goes down temporarily until it is renewed. Depending on your registrar, your domain could already be considered to be in the “redemption period” by the time you realize it is down, which could cost you hundreds of dollars to recover it. The worst-case scenario is that you don’t realize your site is down (maybe you don’t use it for email) and your domain is deleted. If that happens your domain could be registered by someone else and you would lose all the marketing time and money that went into promoting it.
There are a few simple things you can do to avoid any problems with your domain:
- Update the email address that your registrar has on file any time you change your email address.
- Set your domain to auto-renew using a credit card that your registrar will keep on file.
- Make sure that you are listed as the registrant for the domain, not your webmaster or your hosting company.
You have a lot invested in your domain name and website, so take a few minutes to follow these simple steps to protect your website investment!
In our last section, we focused on protecting your domain name. If you are listed as the registrant if the contact email is up to date, and if you have access to your domain account, and if you have your domains set to auto-renew you should be covered.
Now we’re going to focus on protecting your website. Websites are nothing more than a collection of files. Some files contain instructions about how the site should look, some files contain instructions about what the site should do, some files contain information about what content the site should display, and some files are images that are displayed on the site.
Most sites are hosted on an external web hosting server. This is the server that is contacted and “presents” your web pages when someone visits your site. Files on your website are stored on the server. To protect your site, you should have copies of all these files.
You have downloaded one hundred download files from the URL surf. You will be needing all the web files, and in some cases, Don’t forget the database is also a part of your web site and you will need them as well, and you will want them as well. Make a copy of all your documents on a CD or DVD for safekeeping. If the content of your site changes regularly, you may want to make new copies of your files regularly.
If you are not of the technical nature, ask your webmaster, website developer or web hosting company to make a copy of your site files. It’s usually only a small fee, and once you’ve copied your files, you’ve taken the second and last step to save your website investment.