Buying A Domain – Do You Need The Extras?

November 24, 2011 by  Filed under: Domain 

When you have decided to buy a domain name, you will be faced with some choices at the point of sale.

This is because most registrars will take the opportunity, when you have started the purchasing process (and you already have your credit card out) to try to persuade you that you really should buy a few other things as well. These other things may include the same domain with different suffixes like .info, .net, .org , private registration, protected registration, extra years on top of the default one year’s hosting, and so on.

Should you actually take up any of these offers? Let’s look at these options one at a time.

1. Extra domain suffixes

You may feel persuaded that you have found a wonderful name for your new site and that, indeed, it would be a good idea that you get other versions of the name to protect it. But this is only true if you are buying a name. If you brand your site successfully, everyone will assume it is a .com when typing the name into a browser, so you need to own that version of the name. Owning the other versions is not vital.

2. Private registration

This means that your private details such as your name, email address and physical address are not available to anyone who wants to check ownership of your domain. Having a private registration avoids spam, crank emails and phone calls, and espionage such as someone checking up on all the sites you own. For some product or commercial sites, or sites you are going to promote heavily, private registration is a good idea.

3. Protected registration

This goes by various names, but means that it becomes impossible for you to lose control of your domain accidentally. This could happen if you miss the email renewal reminder, if your credit card has expired, or because you simply forget to renew. In effect, the domain will be ‘held’ for you, until you renew the registration. Again, if your site becomes a valuable internet property, and is generating income, this sort of protection is worth considering.

4. More than one year’s registration

Registrars love to offer this one, as they get all the money up front, while you, the owner of the name, have to try to guess whether you will even want to own the name after a year has passed. Even if you are only buying the name as an investment, you might need a long period before you are able to sell it. I buy names to build sites, and I know by experience that sometimes a site will not start making money for over a year. I normally register for two years; after that period, I reassess the investment.

There are other offers made to you at the point of purchasing a domain, but these are the most important ones. Bear them in mind before you click the Checkout button.

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