How to profit from new domain name rules

ICANN changes the rules, but enterprise IT execs can take advantage of new opportunities to boost traffic, revenue

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After two weeks, The Register reported the story in an article titled "Microsoft forgets to renew Hotmail.co.uk domain". As the article stated, "Microsoft only took notice when The Register contacted the company yesterday afternoon to enquire why its hotmail.co.uk site was registered to a private individual." Eventually someone at Microsoft woke up, realized what had happened, and retrieved the domain name from the then frustrated doer-of-good-deeds.

So, as Adelman continues: "Whether your portfolio contains the two names that are critical to your business or a portfolio of a thousand make sure you've got someone to make sure these things are all set to renew automatically and have a valid credit card assigned to the account...otherwise that's when you get into real trouble."

Just as you should cull an investment portfolio for unproductive stocks, domain names that do not capture traffic or serve another function should be dropped. Let's face it, even at annual registrations near $10 per year, this can add up for those with a lot of names.

As Johnston says, "It should never be a set-it-and-forget-it strategy. Be sure that all names set to redirect to your primary (or other) web site are working properly and that people are actually using those names. At Sedo we have a team that works on it year-round. It is a mixture of network people, legal people, and marketing people who are all part of a task force. They are constantly checking to see that domains are pointing to the right pages and that the statistics show people are actually going there. This enables us to cull nonproductive names thus ensuring our portfolio is always working for us."

Final thoughts

IT execs in charge of their company's domain strategy should locate available names that will increase traffic to your site or that protect your brand from abuse. For those that will generate traffic, check the statistics both before and after adding them to your portfolio. Drop names that are unproductive either by not generating traffic or by generating traffic that does not later translate into profitable sales.

Smith is president of Alexander LAN Inc., a freelance consultant and writer in IT.  He can be reached at DirkADSmith@gmail.com.

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Copyright © 2012 IDG Communications, Inc.

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