Allowing domains to expire when upgrading might not be a good idea…

I’m often amazed by the number of business owners that don’t grasp the concept of domain names and their inherent value.

Of course, it’s been over 20 years since the initial .com goldrush and now supposedly the second coming arrived with new gTLDs.

But again, I’m amazed at how most business owners that operate business websites don’t get or scratch the surface on the importance of a domain name to their business.

Having parallels to physical real estate, domain names are very much a lucrative investment.  And why?

Well, domain names are actually seen as a greater investment than physical real estate in most cases when comparing the upkeep and management costs of both.

That’s why I’m always amazed to hear and read stories about people and businesses allowing domains to accidentally expire, or purposely expiring because they’ve upgraded to a new domain.

In my opinion, I don’t believe it’s a good idea to allow a domain name to expire, especially if you built a reputable business using the domain that garnered decent SEO juice and links from reputable websites.

For instance, I read about a city in the Florida Panhandle region that allowed their domain name to expire because they upgraded to a .gov domain name.

While life went on with the new domain, the old domain was likely snagged as a back order or won via an auction by a Japanese adult entertainment company.

Yup, you could only imagine the type of flack the city caught as people visited the old domain due to web browser bookmarks, old print material and tourist sites linking to the old domain.

Not only was it embarrassing for the city, but also quite damaging due to losing their relevant SEO profile.

It’s much like having a business without insurance and then encountering a fire that burns the place down to the ground.  There’s nothing to be done, and it’s all your loss and at your cost!

After receiving much flack about the old domain name, the city’s IT department is now embarking upon a project to buy back the domain name and similar names.

And just like the devastating fire that wipes out a business without insurance is likely to cost the business an astronomical value to rebuild, it’s going to cost this city an arm, a leg or two, if not their annual IT budget.

The painful lesson is that for what they would pay to reclaim ownership of lost and similar domains, they could have paid pennies on the dollar to have renewed the domain and forwarded it to their new domain.

Don’t let this be your website or business. Whether you upgrade to a new domain or stop using a domain altogether, take the appropriate action to always inexpensively renew your domains.

And should you not, then just know that you will have paid the cost in driving unbelievable profits to another business at the expense and existence of your very own. 😉

Written by Alvin Brown
He's an experienced and passionate serial entrepreneur, founder and publisher of Kickstart Commerce. Alvin possesses a great love for startups dominating their market using profitable digital strategies for greater commerce.