I’m quite often asked about web-hosting (as I host several sites myself!) and domain names. As a personal preference I like to keep the two items separate, the Domain name bought/controlled on one server by one company and the hosting elsewhere.
A lot of people seem to think that the two things are a single item, as most companies sell a domain name with hosting to lock you in. However if you buy from a single company, and have any issues with them, your stuck. If they control the domain name (especially if it’s your business name) your pretty much being held to ransom at this point, unless you happy to lose that name.
My preference (as mentioned above) is to buy domain names via big reputable companies like GoDaddy.com – World’s No.1 Domain Name Registrar or 123Reg etc. If your in the UK like me, then it makes sense to buy the .co.uk and .com version of the domain you want, otherwise your competitors may buy it and redirect traffic! Once you have your domain name secured, your web hosting company should be able to give you instructions on how to point the domain name to their server (your web hosting). DON’T transfer the domain name to them, make sure your ONLY point the A record (and MX mail records for email) to them as requested.
As for hosting, well I do not have much experience in this area as I have been running my own web server for a number of years that hosts all my sites on. Go for known names like 1&1 etc. and research before buying, if someone offers you 1TB of disk space and unlimited traffic for 99p a month the chances are you will get rubbish!
The Domain renewal group scam
Got a domain up for renewal? Then chances are you got a letter through from the Domain Renewal group like the one on the right. This has been going on for years and looks very official an all.. BUT watch out! This is a very official looking form that could easily be put in the to paid pile, but if you read carefully, it’s a form to switch the domain to them (Paying probably more than you are now!). All I can say is if you get one, put it straight into the paper recycling bin and don’t give it another though.
Why does this happen? Well unless you have private registration all your information is actually public, so acquiring these details is pretty easy for these companies.