Network Solutions Gets Pwned - Back to Basics
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Like any serious venture, it's important to put in a reasonable amount of time doing “research” and getting familiar with the intricate parts before full execution (um, let's just say my last mail-order bride didn't work out). Picking a registrar is no different, especially for those registrants and resellers who make their living online. The following is a brief summary of some of the main things you should look for when choosing a registrar.
Domain Expiration – Check each registrar's grace period after the expiration of a domain name. Nowadays, domains don't “drop” back onto the open market after the expiration as much. Most registrars will auction them off or keep the domain for themselves. The longer it takes for you to actually lose the domain after expiration the better.
Lock and Unlock Domains – Make sure you know if the registrar locks your domains so that vital information can be changed if necessary.
Transferring Domains – Look over the registrar's rules and restrictions regarding the transfer of your domain to a different registrar.
Auto-renewal – See whether the registrar offers auto-renewal and whether it is the default setting for each domain. This can be a hassle if you choose to opt out in some way.
Business Model – Who does the registrar cater to? How do they make their money? Do they primarily provide service to businesses, or do they make money from advertising on domains in their portfolio or from the secondary market of buying and selling domains directly?
Network Solutions has been one of the most successful registrars for years now. They are likely to take a hit as this story gains momentum, but they have proven capable of overcoming controversy before. My guess is they will have to lower their prices and become much more forthright when it comes to even the slightest change in policy. One thing is for sure, their competitors are going to have a field day when it comes to luring away Networks Solutions' customers.
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