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Whether you’re blatantly throwing money away on bad ideas or losing potential revenue by failing to capitalize on good ones, here are some surefire ways to make the least out of your investment.
It’s so easy to waste money that sometimes all it takes is one simple, little mistake and the next thing you know you’re hemorrhaging time and money into fixing it. Or, if you’re into analogies, sometimes a mistake can be like taking a pin to a balloon and at that point there’s no fixing it.
The good news is that if you pay attention, some mistakes are just as easy to avoid. This one should be at the top of your list.
Stupid Idea 6: Don’t Pay Attention To Your Domain Name, Where It’s Registered Or When It Expires
If you know where your domain name is registered you’re ahead of the game, so good for you. But if experience has taught us one thing it’s that most people have no idea what “registered” means let alone where. And now that we’re on the subject… what password?
It may seem trivial but your domain name is the centerpiece of your web presence. Without it your site has no home and the best site in the world won’t be much use if it’s not actually online.
If you don’t know where your domain is registered, find out! Go to any registrar and perform a WHOIS lookup. It will tell you whether the registrar is GoDaddy, Network Solutions or any number of other possibilities.
If you don’t know what your login credentials are, find out! Submit a reminder request to your registrar to recover your username and password. Depending on how little you remember, you may have to make a phone call or complete paperwork to prove the domain is really yours.
If you don’t know when your domain expires, find out! Check the WHOIS information or log into your account to see the details. And while you’re at it set up an email reminder so that when your domain is close to its expiration date you will receive a notification from your registrar. Better yet, set up auto renewal so you only need to update your credit card expiration date every few years.
If you’ve had to perform any of those steps you’ve already wasted time; time that could have been better spent making money. Or maybe you don’t have the time to send emails, make phone calls, fill out paperwork, sort through minutiae. So you ask your developer to do it for you, but that’s going to cost money.
Worst case scenario, you miss the expiration date on your domain. Oh yes, we’ve seen it happen. Then your domain name goes back into the pool of names eligible for purchase and before you realize your site is down someone has snapped it up for a few dollars and you’re stuck in a branding nightmare.
Plenty of people wait around for just this opportunity and buy domain names that have lapsed in hopes that the previous owner will realize the mistake and be willing to pay – dearly – for a domain that had been pretty much ignored until the drama began. Or perhaps a competitor got lucky and was able to purchase your lapsed domain.
Imagine the complete debacle as you scramble to re-acquire your original domain or buy another one and every second that ticks by is costing you money in time, lost revenue and unnecessary expenses.
You can avoid being this person by keeping track of the important details that make your business run.
Know your domain and registrar details, know how to access your account, and unless you’re at the end of your “going out of business” sale, make darn sure you act before your domain expires.
While you’re at it, make sure that your domain is registered to your business. Many busy businesspeople make the mistake of allowing a developer, consultant or other third party to register the domain. In most cases the domain ends up registered to that third party instead of to you where it belongs.
What happens when you fire your consultant or have a falling out with your developer? They still own your domain name, not to mention the fact that ownership gives them access to your website settings and opens you up to all kinds of nasty possibilities. If your domain isn’t registered to your business, find out before it becomes an issue and take ownership fast.
Pay attention to the details because if you don’t, the financial cost can be the least of your worries.
Have you ever run into a domain name mishap? What did you do to resolve it?
Read More In The “How To Waste Your Money” Series
- Stupid Idea 1: Hire someone to do it “cheap”
- Stupid Idea 2: Fabricate an FAQ section
- Stupid Idea 3: Just start building the site
- Stupid Idea 4: Worry about search optimization “later”
- Stupid Idea 5: Believe the person who tells you they can “get your site to be number one in Google”
- Stupid Idea 6: Don’t pay attention to your domain name, where it’s registered or when it expires
- Stupid Idea 7: Get the cheapest hosting you can find
- Stupid Idea 8: Write the copy yourself
- Stupid Idea 9: Don’t worry about whether your site or database is being backed up
- Stupid Idea 10: Insist on a news section or blog
- Stupid Idea 11: Brush off social marketing as something that’s too hard/not relevant for your business
- Stupid Idea 12: Be too busy to study your analytics and decide it doesn’t really matter anyway
- Stupid Idea 14: Say “I don’t know” a lot
- Stupid Idea 15: Launch the site, breathe a sigh of relief and cross it off your to-do list