Registering your Domain Name
It is frustrating when the domain name you want already belongs to someone else. Most .com domain names are difficult to acquire. Even if the domain name is already registered, you still have options.
Begin with WHOIS
Running the domain name on WHOIS provides you with the status. Often, there is information regarding the individual who registered the name. A query on WHOIS generally provides:
- The service used to register the domain
- The date of registration
- The name of the company or individual registering the name
- Contact information for individual or company
- The date the registration expires
This information can be obtained by a WHOIS database download, entering the domain desired into the search field and clicking the icon to begin the search.
If the domain does not have privacy protection and the contact information was revealed, the next step is contacting the owner. Ask if the domain is available. Be prepared to negotiate and pay a higher price.
A broker will negotiate for the domain. Brokers would either charge a commission, a percentage or a flat rate. A broker is experienced and often able to negotiate a better price. It is safer to place the exchange in the hands of the broker.
Marketplaces and Auctions
Domains can be located on auction sites and marketplaces. Parked domains are found on generic pages under advertisements. Visit the best auction sites to search for the domain name. These sites include Namecheap, Bido, GoDaddy, NameJet, Sedo, Flippa and AfterNic. If you do not find the domain, there may be a good alternative.
The Back Order
You can place a back order on the domain. Eventually, the domain will expire. There is a chance the domain will not be renewed. A back order can be placed at one of the marketplaces or with a registration service. Once the domain expires, it cannot be registered again for 75 days. If there are multiple back orders, the first one placed receives the domain. You can place multiple back orders with different marketplaces.
Purchasing the Domain
Visiting the homepage or landing page for the domain may show it is for sale. If the domain is for sale, there will either be contact information or a price.
Reclaiming a Domain
Some domains were registered in bad faith due to a trademark infringement. The Uniform Dispute Resolution Policy established the term bad faith in 1999. The definition is a domain registered specifically to sell at a higher price to a competitor, an attempt to prevent registration by the trademark holder, an attempt to disrupt the business dealings of the trademark holder or an attempt to attract or confuse clients from a competing business. If any of these are applicable, you can dispute the ownership by filing a claim.
Alternatives of Registering a Domain Name Using WHOIS
If the methods listed have been ineffective, consider using a different domain name. Although the .com is still the standard, there are new options for businesses and personal sites. Certain TDL’s are now expected for specific business types and industries.