EFFECTIVE JANUARY 2021
RE: Domain Registration/Hosting/Email Accounts
Starting in 2021 – I will begin dissolving my role in handling the hosting, email account and domain registration/renewals on client accounts. The reason is simple: Website owner's should have full-direct access to these services and should be directly responsible for the financial responsibilities associated with them. It is a practical “best practice” and - ultimately - a benefit for website owners.
WHAT THIS MEANS FOR YOU
If any of the above do not apply to your particular circumstance, we have things to do. If you have any questions regarding the above, please contact me.
1) DOMAIN REGISTRATIONS
Basically, a domain name is the human-friendly version of an IP address (where the files of your website reside). Domain names are managed by an organization known as ICANN. You register your domain with a Domain Registrar and are responsible for the yearly fees of that registration. If you do not pay the yearly fee, you lose your domain.
Your domain registration contains important Contact Information which verifies that you are the owner of the domain. ICANN will send you a yearly reminder to update Contact Information. In most cases, there is nothing for you do as this information generally does not change.
• ARE YOU THE REGISTRANT OF YOUR DOMAIN?
In the past, I have registered the domains of websites in my own name. It was convenient but it is not a "best practice." If you are the Registrant, there is nothing for you to do. If you are not the Registrant, we need to change that. If you are not sure, contact the web studio.
We need to make sure you are listed as the official Registrant of your domain(s). If you are not the listed Registrant, you have no legal rights to your domain. We can fix that.
2) WEBSITE HOSTING
All websites need hosting. What this means is that the files (pages) of your website need to be stored on a server to be accessible when people visit your website on the internet. There are a multitude of hosting companies to choose from. Prices and features vary. Your hosting server is where you domain resides.
• DO YOU SUPPLY YOUR WEBSITE HOSTING?
In the past, I have offered website shared-hosting at a discounted price. I would create a hosting account and would share the costs of that account between a variety of domains/clients that were using it. It is/was a convenient way to move things along, but – behind the scenes – things often got “tricky.” In particular, when I would need to share access to a domain with a third-party service for a client it could became tedious and awkward.
Web studio clients will be required to supply the required information from their hosting company and we will transfer your files to that server. If you would like to continue to maintain a ‘shared-hosting” account with the web studio, we can accommodate. In the future, all shared-hosting will be billed on a monthly basis and the fees may be slightly higher than prior. In the future, all clients will be responsible to keep a record of their hosting FTP settings. (You may never need it, but it is an important thing to have.)
Hosting companies generally charge yearly fees for their services. Please contact the web studio before deciding on a hosting company as some have less than favorable reputations and practices.
3) EMAIL ACCOUNTS
Email security and email utility have become increasingly challenging aspects of the internet. Part of presenting a professional image on your website should include having a domain specific email (firstname.lastname@example.org). However, this is not always the general practice and is not a major concern for many.
• WHAT'S YOUR EMAIL?
In many instances the web studio has been supplying domain specific “workspace” email accounts for clients requesting them. These are very basic-featured and reliable, but there are some newer, more productive and more secure alternatives available. Future billings for our workspace email may include an increase in costs (as our service fees have increased significantly these past two years). Due to the increase, we feel it is responsible to mention that there are alternatives available for your consideration.
There are a variety of domain specific email options available (most notably through Microsoft and Google). Also, many hosting companies still offer free email with their hosting packages. (GoDaddy – our primary provider – does not offer free email anymore.) We invite you to contact the web studio to review your specific email account needs and possible alternatives that are available.
Needless to say, there may be a bit for some to digest on this page. As the years progress, the internet and website ownership become a little more and more complex. We understand that. If you have any specific questions, please contact us. We welcome the opportunity to be of service.