Are you interested in purchasing a domain name soon? Well, you’ll need to first understand more about domain name lifecycle. But what does this mean?
First, all domain names have to get registered which is where the lifecycle begins. For this article, therefore, we look at how one can register a domain name all the way to a point of having it deleted. By understanding this whole process, you will learn more on how you can retain rights to a domain name that has recently expired accidentally or be able to grab a domain that has just been deleted elsewhere.
There’s No Such a Thing as Owning a Domain Name
One of the biggest misconception among domain name buyers is that anyone can buy a domain name. Well, this is not true. Instead, you can only lease a domain name from a registry which is why even the most popular domains such as Google.com and Facebook.com still have their expiration dates. What this means is that all registered domain names can only be used for a certain length of time after which they become available for others to register at the domain registrars.
Domain Name Lifecycle
Phase One – Domain Name is Available
During this phase, a domain name is available for anyone to register as no one is entitled to it. As such, you can search for it using various registrars such as GoDaddy.com. When available, a domain can be registered for a period ranging between one and ten years.
Phase 2- Registered Period
Once you’ve paid up for your preferred domain name, the name becomes unavailable to others as it’s now active. For the next 60 days, the domain name has to stay with the current registrar.
However, you may opt to move it to another registrar once this period elapses.
Your domain name will then remain actively yours for the term you’ve paid for it. After your lease period has elapsed, you will be required to renew the domain name registration if you still need to keep it.
Typically, your registrar will send you an expiration notification a month or earlier letting you know that your domain name is approaching expiration. This is vital as it offers you an opportunity to renew it before you can lose your hard-developed domain.
Phase 3- Expiration Period
Normally, a domain name is deactivated within 24 hours of expiration. During this time, your registrar will hold your domain thereby prompting a breakdown of your website and email. Besides, this will also mean that your domain name will henceforth not be returned to you by your registrar at the normal price if you still need it. It is also important to mention here that it won’t be possible to transfer your domain name to another registrar during this time. This is why managing expired domain names is often a difficult affair. Depending on your registrar’s policies and processes, a domain name can stay in this expired stage for between 0-45 days.
Phase 4- Redemption Period
At the end of the expiration period, a domain enters a 30-day redemption stage. Often, most registrars will delete all the information about the particular domain name during this period. Subsequently, the domain name will then be removed which often makes it extremely costly to reclaim its ownership. So, if your treasured domain name enters this period, be prepared to pay a fortune to get it back.
Phase 5- Awaiting Deletion
At this point, the domain name is now ready for deletion. This period only lasts five days after which the domain name is no longer restorable. As such, the domain name gets deleted from the registry. Unfortunately, there is little you can do to stop it from getting deleted. So, if you plan to recover your domain at this stage, then you will have to wait until the period is over so you can register it afresh. Remember that you still not might be lucky to capture it especially if someone else grabs it before you.
What Does This Domain Lifecycle Teach You? Renew Early
Having followed the whole process closely, you will agree that it can be such an easy thing to lose a domain name possibly after years of investing in it. As such, it is only prudent that you are keen about renewing yours early enough. Doing this not only saves you money but also lowers the risk of losing it for nothing in the end. The good news is that a majority of registrars will automatically renew your domain name tenure if you allow them to do it. As such, you will only be required to add a credit card to your account which then allows the renewal to become automated.