Tag Archives: Domain Names

Domain Name Scams: Have You Fallen for One?

Have you received information regarding your domain name through postal mail? Did you receive numerous invoices regarding your domain name? Ever been stuck in a contract for well over a year? If any of the above apply to you, you may have fallen for a domain name scam.

Domain name scams occur when a domain name registrar sends you and “invoice” to renew your domain registration, but it really is an agreement to switch to their services.

Scott Karlo, founder of Internet Know How (IKH), LLC, offers these helpful tips on how prevent your company from falling for domain name scams.

Prevent Domain Name Scams by:

• Setting up automated renewals with timely advanced warnings prior to billing period. This allows you to know when a renewal date is scheduled and in turn you can ignore any other “invoices” you may receive from other companies since you know exactly how much and when your next payment is due.

• Using the registrar’s domain locking feature to protect it from being taken without authorization. This prevents registrar companies from initiating a transfer request to pull your domain to their system. By locking your domain you save yourself the time, hassle and cost of switching back away from them.

• Carefully review invoices from the registrar companies before mailing in the requested payment due. Many companies assume that the invoice is real. It passes through accounts payable, who recognize the web address, pay it. Since they are fearful of losing the domain they don’t tend to question the invoices legitimacy. Investigate who the invoice is from before paying it!

• Finding an internet consulting firm that will be able to monitor your domain names on a regular basis and keep track of renewal dates. Hiring an internet consulting firm relieves the headache of domain name scams. Your company can ignore all mailings regarding your website domain registration.

Web Hosting Strategy for Managing Multiple Websites

If you are making a comfortable living from the Internet and the Web or have a plan to achieve that goal, it’s likely that you are running more than ten websites. The websites are your virtual offices. You want to your sites to be up and running 365 days, 7 days a week and 24 hours a day. Managing multiple websites is a daunting task if running one website is a hobby.


Proposed Hosting Strategy for Managing Multiple Websites

The hosting strategy we propose is to host your multiple major websites with 3-4 different hosting companies, and open a reseller account with another hosting company for 1) small and new websites, 2) web development and 3) backup. Hosting with too many hosting companies will significantly increase the time and the difficulty of managing sites, and using a single hosting company isn’t a smart choice either.

Justification of the Hosting Strategy

Cost – Cost of the Web hosting isn’t an issue for running a single web site whether it costs $5 or $25 a month. The difference is only a few hundred dollars or less a year. It’s always nice and smart to get the most out of every single dollar in doing business. At least, a few hundred dollars difference wouldn’t make or break a business. If you run 10 or even 50 websites, the cost of Web hosting alone will define the success or failure of your online adventure. To cut the hosting cost, the option is to use a reseller hosting account to host as many small or new sites as you want for about $15 a month. You host one or 2 major websites with one hosting company. Shared hosting account costs under $10 a month, and dedicated server will cost $50 or more a month.

Uptime – If your bread-and-butter maker website is down for a few hours, you’ll lose hundreds of dollars and more. Even though most hosting companies promise 99.9% uptime, it’s not common to see a website down for a few hours. A site could be down for a half day or even more if a hosting company is doing a major update. The hosting company may do the update in a weekend or a major holiday, but that’s when many family-oriented and travel sites generate their revenues. If you could afford the loss of revenues, many websites owners can’t bear the psychological loss and pressure. Hosting your sites with a few hosting companies will reduce the risk of downtime.

Application Development – For simple web application, webmasters will do development on the same production hosting site. If your ecommerce applications are complex, doing development on the production site may bring down the live site especially if you’re in the process of changing configuration files or install customized applications. The option is setup a website on your reseller account for development and testing, and move the applications to production account on another server after the completion.

Backup – If you’re not happy with a hosting company, a hosting company is out of business, or the servers will be down for a day or two, you can easily temporarily or permanently switch from one hosting company to other since you’re familiar with the site managing tools already. If you have a backup or secondary copy running on another server, all you need for the switch is the transfer of the domain, which will take no more than a minute.


Shop Before You Buy

There’re too many hosting plans to choose from a large number of hosting companies – ASP Web Hosting, Budget Hosting, Dedicated Servers, eCommerce Hosting, FrontPage Web Hosting, Hosting With Templates ( http://www.theserving.com ) , Managed Web Hosting, PHP Web Hosting, Reseller Hosting, Shared Hosting, Unix / Linux Hosting, Virtual Private Servers, Windows Hosting or Co-location Hosting. Compare the cost, hosting features, tracking records of hosting companies before making your commitment. Good luck with your online adventures.

Effective SEO Comes Cheap

Search engine optimization or SEO is the hottest way to drive targeted traffic to your website. Maximizing the benefits of a well optimized website will yield lots of earnings for the marketer. However, optimizing your site might cost you thousands of dollars if you are not skilled in this area.

But to tell you the truth, you can essentially get information on low cost SEO anywhere in the Internet. But only several really show you how to work out an affordable search engine optimization endeavor. And those few that really inform include this article.

1. Link exchanges

One cheap SEO method that can get you best results is through link exchanges or linking to and from other web sites. Depending on the websites that you would like to exchange links with, this tool could even cost you nothing at all. Contact the author or owner of the web site you want to have a link exchange with. You will be surprised with the eventual spiking up of your page ranking using this means of getting your website optimized.

2. Write or acquire key word rich articles

Writing truly informative and keyword-rich articles is one surefire way to make your Internet business more visible than ever. It’s either you write your own articles or you get them from article directories that allow you to post these articles on your website as long as you keep the resource box or the author’s byline in tact. Just don’t stuff your articles with keywords that even idiots would get bore of reading them. The readability and freshness of your articles will still be the basis of whether your writers will keep on coming back to your website or not.

3. Catchy Domain Name

What better will make your target visitors remember your website but with a very easy-to-recall domain name. Something sweet and short will prove to be very invaluable. Registering your domain name is not for free. But creativity is.

4. Organize your site navigation

Providing easy steps in navigating your site is one way to make your visitors become at ease with your site. This, in turn, will improve the flow of traffic to your website.

Low cost SEO is always evolving like any other approach in information technology. There are many methods that can very well land you on the top ten rankings of Google or on any other search engines. Some may cost a lot but there are methods that can give you the same results at a low price or you can even do on your own such as those mentioned above.

Do It Yourself Website

If you are just starting out in your new business and you decide that a website could be a valuable addition to this business how do you go about getting one up and running? You have two basic options really. Do it yourself or employ an individual or company to do it for you. Which option you take depends upon your own confidence in acquiring the skills necessary and the amount of funds you can divert to hiring in a company. If you have sufficient funds then hire in a company as this will enable you to devout all your time to developing your core business. If you don’t then you will have to do it yourself. So how do you go about it?

You will require no or little knowledge of HTML as you can purchase a whole package from a web hosting company which should include some form of website developing software and your domain name plus the hosting of your website. Give some thought to your domain name. It should be easy for people to type in and remember. Not too long, succinct and preferably no hyphens. So you have chosen your domain name and your hosting service now you must develop your site. Again give some thought to this. How many pages you are likely to produce, how many links you will need. What sort of information is going on each page. If you are completely new to this then I would suggest that using your site editor software you produce a first draft and publish it. You can always modify everything later as you go along. This will give you your first website which you can then submit to the search engines albeit not exactly what you want or one that is going to attract visitors.

Now you need to do quite a lot of research on the internet as to how to make your site visitor friendly and search engine friendly. Here you will discover the importance of good content, changing content, appropriate keywords, backward links, article writing and good copy on the website. Taking this information on board will enable you to restructure and rewrite your site over a period of time, probably many times. However all the time this learning process is going on your site is actually published on the Web so is likely to start being trawled by search engines and getting indexed even if it doesn’t sky rocket through the rankings. The most important thing to do from the outset is to write good content that will be of interest to your visitors. If it holds the attention of your visitors and gets them to contact you then it will likely be of equal interest to the search engines. Do not produce a site that is written with the search engines in mind. It is your visitors who are important and by following a few simple rules that are published all over the Web your site can become very attractive to visitors and to search engines also. Keep the site textually based, there is no point in having very flashy graphics as these are not noticed by the search engines and often annoy visitors who want to get at the information they are after as quickly as possible and not have to wait for some animated introduction to finish before they can enter the actual site.

Having put into practice all the advice that is out there you should have put together a pleasing and appealing website that visitors and search engines like. Each day or week you add more content and develop more links and you will gradually climb up the rankings. The last piece of advice I would give is start writing and submitting articles. One or two a week would be excellent over a year or two. Once your articles start being published you will see an immediate leap in the number of links back to your site and a subsequent rise in the rankings if your content is also good. Aim to produce over time several hundred articles if possible. The more you write the more links back to your site you will develop and the more visitors you will get as well as boost your rankings in the search engines.

Dot com or dot net, which is the best domain name to settle for?

When seeking domain names most people get confused over whether to settle for a dot com address or a dot net one. More so in recent times when dot net addresses have risen in popularity and usage on the net.

There are a few important facts that one needs to realize before they opt for a dot net address. Quite often when people need to commit the address of a website to memory, they will not remember the dot net and the first place they will check is the given address with a dot com ending. Many times when they do not find it there, they will hardly ever think of using dot net to repeat the search. That is a lost visitor and maybe even potential client.

What is even more worrying is that there is increasing evidence to suggest that an increasing number of people end up at a website after hearing about it either from a friend or acquaintance, or by seeing an advertisement on Television or hearing about it on radio or reading something about the site. When committing the website address to memory very few will distinctly remember the dot net address if that is the domain name that you have chosen.

Having said that, let us also appreciate the fact it is becoming increasingly difficult for anybody to land a decent dot com address. After years of use, there is hardly any short catchy name that you can think of that will not have been already taken up. Do not even mention search-engine key word friendly domain names which will be virtually impossible to get. This is the reason why folks often settle for a dot net address. Others do not even bother to start their search with dot com domains. This is a big mistake despite the unavailability of good dot com domains, which we have already acknowledged.

Exhaustive efforts should be made to try and secure a dot com domain before you give up and move to dot net. For example you can try and search for abandoned domain names. In fact by making an effort to be really creative and not hurrying the process, it is quite possible to secure a reasonably good dot com domain. You can be sure that it will be well worth the extra effort and time you put into it which will result in better success when you begin to seek traffic. Of course if you just cannot get a dot com domain, a dot net one is a good second choice.

Multiple Website Hosting – Subdomains are the Answer!

Many business owners find themselves in a quandary over the ways to make the most of their company’s web site. This is especially true of those who have the need to maintain more than one web site but do not wish to pay for multiple hosting accounts. If this is you, a sub-domain may be the answer.

Sub-domains are sort of a site within a site. They are not, however, simply additional pages of an existing web site. The sub-domain can have a web site all its own, completely separate from the site located at the main domain name.

To understand the use and purpose of sub-domains, it may be necessary to first understand the concept of an internet domain name. Every web site that is active on the internet (and there are literally billions of them now – it was estimated as long ago as 1996 that there were more web pages in existence than there were people on Earth) has a unique domain name. There can be only one Ebay dot com, for example, on the entire internet. The domain name, however, is really just a way for humans to relate to the site. Internet servers see web site names as unique I.P. addresses. It is the domain name server that translates those numbers into names and back again.

A sub-domain is simply an offshoot of your web site’s domain. In terms of the way it appears on the server, the sub-domain is simply a folder or a sub directory located within your domain’s root directory. Any sub directory can serve as a sub domain. For example, if your web site is “www.mycompany.com” and you store the images for your site in a directory called “images,” then you could, if you wished, create a sub-domain at “images.mycompany.com”. As long as you put an “index.html” page in the folder you should be able to pull it up in a web browser that way. In most cases you will create a new sub directory to be associated with a sub-domain and some web hosts do not support sub-domains on their servers or put a limit on the number of sub-domains you may associate with your site.

The benefits of using sub-domains as opposed to opening multiple hosting accounts are twofold. First, you get the obvious benefit of only having to pay for one hosting account. You also benefit from being able to have a completely separate web site, but one that your customers will easily recognize as being associated in some way with your business. Some companies will set up sub-domains for various divisions (xyz.com may also have sales.xyz.com or support.xyz.com) and some will use sub-domains for various businesses that are all offshoots of the same parent company.

That association could be a downside to using sub-domains as well. If you want to keep the relationship between your companies under wraps (like Disney tried so hard to do with Touchstone Pictures so many years ago), you may want to use multiple accounts rather than subdomains. The web address clandestineproducts.megamall.com would clearly betray that there was some connection between Clandestine Products and Megamall, whether you wanted that information to be known or not.

Internet Domain Registration – Establishing and Transferring Your Domain Name

If you’re in business, one of the most important things to you may be your ability to establish an internet presence. Operating some type of functional web site for your business helps your customers find you, can present additional marketing opportunities through e-commerce, and offers advertising opportunities that you can not get elsewhere. Companies that do not have a web site lose business to companies that do all the time.

Of course the real key to your web site is the internet domain registration. Everybody wants mybusiness.com – the problem is that domain names are unique and can be taken by anyone. If you don’t register your desired domain name right away, someone else could take it. The fact is that internet domain registration can turn into a sneaky competitive game. In many cases business owners have gone to register a domain name and found that it had been registered years before they every started the company by some group that is in the business of registering domains and then turning around and selling them for exorbitant rates.

A humorous story came from the 2005 municipal election in North Las Vegas, Nevada when one candidate realized that the incumbent mayor had not registered an internet domain name. The incumbent registered the mayor’s name dot com and as many variants of it that he could come up with, literally stealing the Mayor’s plans for a web site out from under him. The tactic didn’t win him the election, but the candidate managed to annoy the mayor quite a bit and still owns the internet domain registration names to this day.

The key to avoiding these sorts of problems lies in early registration of your desired domain name. If you find the one that you want (or a close variant of it), register it immediately. Even if you’re not prepared to set up a web site yet or won’t be for several years, register the domain right away anyway.

Registering a domain name before being ready to set up its web site will require the domain name being transferred to the servers of your desired host when you are ready to establish the site. Transferring the domain name once you have selected a web host is a very simple process, but does require you to establish the change with both the registration company and the new host. The new host will provide you with the server information that you, in turn, will need to provide to the company with whom you originally registered the domain. There may be a short waiting period (typically 24 to 72 hours) while both servers get the information updated. Once that process is complete, you’ll have your domain safely residing on your host’s servers and your site (as long as it’s been built) will be ready to go.

The internet domain registration and transfer for your business web site is a simple process and can be completed through automated online systems in most cases. Clearly the most important part of this process is the registration of the domain name and this should always be done as soon as possible, even if it is going to be years before you’re ready to get the actual web site up and running.

Domain Registration: How Many Extension Should You Register

When it comes to selection of a domain name, people are often inundated with several questions. One of the most important of them is which extension should I choose – dot-com or dot-net or dot-biz?

There are circumstances when you will think it is fit to register more than one extension. This article is aimed at helping you to make the right decision.

A common problem is that people usually type in .com all the time on net and land up on various other sites. This could be troublesome both for the business and the customer.

When you select a domain name, you are always given a list of different extensions to choose from. These extensions can help specify the type of products or services you are offering online or your geographical location.

To begin this article, I am giving some basic definitions of the extensions you can choose from:

* .com signifies “commercial”. It is the most well-known extension and preferred by all commercial enterprises. The acute scarcity of unforgettable .com domain names has led to creation of several other extensions.

* .net signifies “network”. It is generally used by internet service providers, web hosting companies, or other firms related to network or internet services.

* .org signifies “organization”. It is commonly used by non-commercial web sites. But, at present, many businesses register their matching .org extension to their .com domain names.

* .biz signifies “business”. It is used for business web sites. There are more chances of you getting this extension because of its low current penetration.

* .info signifies “information”. It is generally used for information sharing web sites. This too like .biz is gradually growing in popularity and there is more likelihood of you getting it.

Your first aim should be to get a perfect domain name for your business. Once you have done that you should then consider registering other extensions for the same domain name.

It is up to you to decide which extensions are most relevant for your business. It depends a lot on your customer base, range of products/services, and also your brand image.

You should always use domain forwarding service to redirect visitors from your other domains to your primary domain. This is quite essential since visitors may get confused about your web site address and may reach your competitor’s web site. For example, you domain name is home-appliances.net and your potential customers may reach home-appliances.com, which is your competitor.

Prevention is always better than cure. So, instead of buying a rival domain name from someone (at a high cost), it is always preferable to register that domain name yourself (at a low cost).

We find that name protection and greater coverage are the two key forces driving the need for registering more than one domain name. The accessibility of the site increases by registering more than one extension for a domain name.

There are other advantages of multiple domain name registration. It helps in creating a demand for similar domain names due to people realizing that so many domain names are available related to the primary one.

But some observers in the industry have a different viewpoint. They think that having more than one domain extension is very confusing for the visitors to these sites.

In conclusion, I would like to say that your primary target should be .com and thereafter, find out the relevant extensions for your business and try to register them also. I recommend you to register all relevant extensions so as to guarantee maximum coverage and minimum misguided competition.

Domain registration and copyright violation

One of the most important aspects of choosing a domain name registration is that it should be non-infringing. This is not an easy task since most unique names have already been registered. The number of useful domain names from the marketing point of view have become extremely limited. Several companies now register variations of their trademark names as a preventive measure against infringement. For example, check www.coke.com, www.coca-cola.com, and www.coca-cola.com, or try www.3m.com and www.mmm.com.

All these factors have led to a crisis of domain names and given rise to increasing cases of infringement of domain registration. A number of companies have taken legal action against other companies or individuals over alleged copyright violation on the domain names.

There are some fundamental guidelines and cross-checks for selection of a domain name registration.

You must carefully select some names that are relevant to your business model. You must be able to justify your reason for using the name. Your domain name registration should principally consist of a name you are using as a trade name, trademark or corporate name.

It is better to select more than one name since you are not sure about the availability of the required domain name.

Now, search the website of one of the prominent domain name registrars to check if the required name is available. If the name has already been registered by someone else, the search result will provide you with optional names that are similar to your requirements. For example, for the name “ford”, the search result may give you similar names like “aboutford.com” and “fordbusiness.com”.

If the domain name that you are looking has already been registered but there is no content being displayed at the domain, try to find out the details of the owner of the domain. It is possible that he/she may be genuine and have yet not published any content.

It is also possible that the owner does not plan to create a web site and is willing to give you the domain at the original price. You must confirm that the seller has ownership rights for that particular domain name.

Choosing a domain name registration that is same as or quite similar to another well-known trademark, may lead to legal action. The regulations governing these issues are dealt by Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).

It is very likely that you would lose right of your domain name registration if you have intentionally chosen a name similar to another domain name so as to confuse potential visitors to the site. For example, if your site deals in consumer electronics goods made by a Samsung competitor, do not choose the name “samsungbusiness.com” since a court is most likely to pass a verdict that you selected this name to divert attention of Samsung customers.

There could be others reasons of losing a domain registration. It may be found that you have never carried out any business under that name or there is no person in your company similar to that name. Another reason could be that you intend to sell that domain name to your competitor for financial gain.

If your domain name is same as your name then you may be allowed to continue to use it, in spite of the fact that it is similar to someone else’s domain name. But the usage of such a name is governed by certain conditions set by court. For example, Mr. Suki Nokia, who runs a cosmetics business, may be allowed to use the domain name “nokia.kr” but he would be barred from using his site to demonstrate any electronics-related information or advertising.

It is also possible for you to use a domain name that is similar to another trademark if your objective is not to criticize the other person’s business.

In the non-cyberworld, two companies may have the same name if they do not conduct a similar business or do not have similar product lines. Roxy Electrical and Roxy Laundry can coexist comfortably. However, in the web world, both Roxies cannot own the “roxy.com” domain name. The laundry Roxy could register under “roxy.laundry” and the electrician under “roxy.electrical.”

A very useful tip is to buy all three of the top level domains – .com, .net and .org. You should also buy all possible misspellings of your domain name before anybody else takes advantage of this fact.

You have put a lot of money and energy into building your business and if you are forced to give up the domain name, your business is likely to suffer due to it. So, you need to put your best efforts in choosing a domain registration that is both distinctive and non-infringing.

Expired domain registration still profitable?

After the dot com crash, expired domain names and expired domain name traffic have been a source of potential income. It is important to inexpensively obtain the automated tools required to track the thousands of domain name registration and abandoned websites that are removed from the domain registry and become available for purchase.

Expired domain registration and the expired domain name traffic associated with them have been only available to those who had an automated system and tools.

Now, automated tools and resources are available for identifying, appraising and even buying these domain names on autopilot.

Expired domain names are those that had previously been registered to another owner. These domain name registration are available to the open market because of non-payment of the domain name renewal fees. Such domain names are returned to the open market about forty-five days after the expiration date.

Many domain names even point to fully functioning websites while many are registered for speculation. These names are registered by speculators in the hope of obtaining a profit on the resale of the domain name.

Numerous other domain names are registered for website development, but do not appear online. In a number of these cases, the domain name owners do not follow through with respect to the website development and allow the domain registration to expire.

However, there are a number of expired domain names with fully functioning websites, receiving daily traffic from the search engines, links and banner ads. The expired domain names that get this daily traffic can earn revenues if these are redirected to another website or marketed with affiliate programs.

Earning Profit from Expired Domain Names & Expired Domain Name Traffic:

1. Buying for speculation – There is now a large and highly profitable market for reselling domain registration at present, and speculators are looking out for developing technologies and trends. Evolution is constantly taking place in technology and trends. There are markets, being watched closely right now, that are expected to grow exponentially within a short span of time. It should be a good idea to locate and register expiring domain registration that are related to new trends, technology and markets in order to earn substantial profits.

2. Buying expiring domain names and redirecting the targeted traffic – Targeted keyword domain names can help to get traffic from those simply typing in keyword rich domain names into the address bar and hitting the enter key.

3. Buying expired domain name registration and putting up generic websites – Using tools like easy website building software, third party payment processors, auto responders and other applications, even a novice could put generic websites online with keyword rich domain names that should appear in the search engine rankings. These websites can be built using expired domain names to drive traffic to them and the domain registration and the developed website could then be sold together with the domain name, as a value added commodity.

4. Buying expiring domain names of websites that are already online – A number of expiring domain names are, actually, already functioning websites. The owners of these websites either did not renew their domain registration for some reason or simply stopped operating the website. In fact, quite often, these websites already have traffic from links to other websites, search engine rankings and even directory listings.

5. Buying expired domain names and using them for marketing affiliate programs – Affiliate programs are a good way to acquire an online business without even having a product. Affiliate marketers redirect traffic from the affiliate website to the website of the actual product or service and charge a commission or a fee when any of the redirected traffic results in sales. Affiliate programs have become an automated turnkey solution for a number of entrepreneurs, especially novices.

One can locate and register expired domain names that closely target the market of the affiliate programs and then draw that targeted traffic into the website with expired keyword rich domain names with content that satisfies the informational needs. Then the users can be led onto the sales page of the product.