Redback Studios

Who REALLY Owns Your Website & Domain Name?!!

Hello %%First Name%%

This article is for you. Yes you. As still so many new clients I deal with still aren’t in control of their domain name and website and I spend hour and days trying to help them when the you know what hits the fan and they need to edit/move their website/hosting. I know this is a tedious and an easy to ‘put off’ thing that you don’t really want to worry about. But if you don’t and you are not the ‘legal’ owner of your own website and business domain name, you could loose everything. And I see this far too often.

I know I have written on this topic before, but it seems that many business owners still don’t understand just how incredibly important this is and often don’t realise until it is too late!

Case Study: Did you see the article in the newspaper today of a well known and acclaimed Web Development and hosting company that went bust and left many of it’s client in the lurch with no website, email and online business?!

The article had interviews with people who have lost everything and are likely to never get it back and most certainly not in a reasonable time frame.

Imagine if this happened to you!... Overnight you lost your email and your website and you had no access to your domain name. And imagine the prospect of this going on for weeks or even months!

But it doesn’t need to be caused from such a dramatic situation as a business going belly up! I have again and again worked with clients who simply need to move hosting companies, set up a new website and other basic scenarios, but they can’t as they don’t actually own their own domain name and/or can’t access it to make any changes. (I am even helping one high profile client with this right now who has lost their website and emails totally for several days now.)

You can easily protect yourself and avoid this and experience nothing more than a hiccup to get back up and running again.

Here are a few simple steps/precautions EVERY business should do to not be put in this potentially expensive and frustrating situation.


Protecting Your Online Business.

1. Who Owns Your Domain Name – First thing you should do is a check who is actually of the registered owner of your domain name and VERY IMPORTANTLY, what is the contact email address with your domain! You might be surprised to find it is someone who ‘used’ to work with you, or your very first web development company – and they may no longer even exist!

If you have a domain, you can check at And for .com domains try (there are multiple site that can do a Whois for you). Just enter your domain name and view the information. Check that your business is the registered owner (some web companies do it in their own name) and that the Registered Email Address is yours also. It is also a good idea that this email address not be one associated with that same domain name. A Gmail, Yahoo or similar address is a great way.

2. Your Domain Name In Your Control – Doing step one you can also see what company is the Registrar for your domain. It is also important that this is in YOUR account or that you have your own access to your domain with that registrar, not your web company’s account, or again you could be up the proverbial if you need to make a change or the web company disappears. You need to have your own access to the Domain Management account so you can at any time, login and change the domain settings if needed. This access will also allow you to edit the email address as mention above.

If any details are not yours or you don’t have access to your domain management, contact the person/company currently in control of your domain and ask them to change the records or ask them for access details or if you have to, to be secure, transfer your domain to your own account.

3. Backup Back up Backup – Just like the files on your office computer/server, you should regularly backup your website. This way should there be an issue or technical problem with the site, a virus/hack or you just want to move your site, you can do so without hassle.

Many web hosting companies do promote automatic backups, that’s great unless the web company disappears or has its own technical problems. So keep your own backups. You can do this manually if you know how, but in your hosting Control Panel you should have a backup feature, if not you may want to ask your host to add it or consider a different host as this should be standard. (Make sure this system also backs up your database if your site uses one.) Using this feature, ensure you then download the generated backup to your own computer/server.

If you find this a bit daunting, employ a third party to do this for you on regular, set intervals. I do this for a number of my clients and it has saved them many a long headache and downtime by being able to simply refer or re-upload a backup. The alternative can sometimes be extremely expensive and frustrating, especially with so many virus/hacks around these days.


That’s it! Just these simple steps and you have a rock-solid, secure domain and website totally in your control. Not doing this is like not having the keys to your own business and being reliant on other people and leaving yourself at risk. But bydoing these few steps and if something goes wrong, you can fix it or get it fixed quickly, easily and cheaply.

I hope you found this information helpful and valuable for protecting your online business. If you would like my help in any way, please feel free to let me know.

If you have any topics you would like me to address in these newsletters, or have further questions on this topic or anything else, please don't hesitate to contact us on or Reply to this mailing.

Warm regards






Just Imagine!...

People come to your site because they are interested in your product/service, yet the opportunity to find out who is visiting your site is missed by focusing on just design, rather than marketing. Just think… if you had the contact details of those interested visitors from your site & made regular contact with them... what an impact that could have on sales?!


Talk to us at Redback Studios to help make your website a greater marketing tool. Contact Us

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Redback Studios recently upgraded our Wine IP website; and it has a very smart look and is simple and easy to navigate. The process for us as a business was easy and Laurence extremely helpful and understood what we were seeking; which reduced the costs in time and money. Redback also hosts our website and have been able to help us with technical problems that have arisen outside their responsibility. I wouldn’t hesitate in recommending Redback to design, develop and maintain your website presence.

Sue Henderson - WineIP Pty Ltd 13 August 2012


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