Monday, February 27, 2012

Exit Strategy



www.lucima.com

In retrospect, I could have wound up in a bad situation with JustHost.com

We've all heard the nightmares others have had with losing the rights to their websites (domains). About not being able to access their domain in light of some tricky situations. Some can't login to their account anymore because they've let their registration lapse, now they're locked out of their account. Others discover they have no legal ownership of their own domains because they have someone else build their website and register the domain at the same time. When push comes to shove the website builder can hold their domain name for ransom.

In these scenarios the easiest thing to do is walk away with a sour taste in your mouth. Of course, later on you'll find that someone else has registered the domain name. You can only hope that you don't repeat the same mistakes.

When walking away is not an option things get really hairy. Now you're talking about legal battles.

When I registered LUCIMA.com as a domain, I didn't know if I would make it as a professional photographer. I signed up and purchased a 2-year license on the domain name. Last year it was renewed for another 2 years. No sweat since JustHost.com was both my domain registrant as well as my domain host.

When the wheels started to come off with JustHost.com it wasn't just a matter of moving website to a new domain host. I needed to ensure the registration of the domain was not going to someday be held for ransom. Not trusting JustHost with my domain registration anymore, I registered my domain with GoDaddy.com and requested that lucima.com be transferred from JustHost to GoDaddy.com. Why so paranoid? JustHost's core competency is not domain registration. They do that as a value-added service on top of domain hosting which is their core competency. But as I discovered throughout this process, they don't make it easy to transfer the registration of a domain name. It took 5 days to accomplish this in light of the fact that I had all the right documentation, rights, and proof that I had the authority to make this transfer.

But at least now I can rest in peace that JustHost can't hold my domain name ransom simply because I'm no longer hosting my website on their site. Why GoDaddy.com? Simple. It's the largest registrar of website domains. That is their core competency.

Another thing I discovered is that your domain registration contact email should not be a domain email. For example, my domain registration email should not be charles@lucima.com because in the event that my domain host is down or in jeopardy or being held ransom, I can not access charles@lucima.com to prove that I am the owner of this domain. Using charles@lucima.com to register www.lucima.com is practically a circular argument. Not smart. Seriously, I almost did this. Actually, I did do this and 2 days later decided this wasn't smart and changed my domain registration email with GoDaddy.

In retrospect, when I registered lucima.com I had no idea where I'd be 2 years later. I didn't have the foresight to predict the value that I could create in the LUCIMA brand and really this story is very much about branding and brand value. In any event, it's kind of how I approach things in general though... I don't think too much about doing it, I just do it first and figure it out as we go along. I often don't have an exit strategy but exit strategies are important when there's any possibility for things hitting the fan down the road. Hopefully none of you have to endure losing a domain name, particularly one that has brand value.

Now that I'm done with the transfer, I only have to cancel my account with JustHost.com!

1 comment:

  1. Bluehost is ultimately the best hosting provider with plans for any hosting requirments.

    ReplyDelete