Friday, October 12, 2007

Domain Registration - Price Increase

If you are at a low priced registrar, get ready for a price increase starting October 15, 2007. Verisign, the Com / Net registry, is increasing the cost for registering those domain names by $.42 and $.35, respectively (see press release from Verisign - Most likely the low cost registrars will be increasing their fees as they pass on the additional cost to their customers. In any case, if you get a chance this weekend, you may want to renew your domains for a few years to avoid some additional cost.

Terms of Service - Payment

When reviewing the payment section of an online terms of service, pay close attention to any 'auto-renewal' language. In most cases, it is your responsibility to keep an up to date credit card on file (so keep track of those expiration dates) if you want a service to auto-renew. If your credit card is outdated or no longer in use, your service may be cancelled unexpectedly. For those services where you prefer not to have an auto-renewal feature, make sure to send an e-mail and see if they can turn that feature off (something in writing that is acknowledged as received is better than just statements you get from someone over the phone).

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Terms of Service - Parties

When signing up for an online service, you typically check a box that indicates you have read the 'terms of service'. Although it may be time consuming, a few minutes of reading may save you some money and/or hassle in the future. One of the first parts of the agreement will list the name of the company you are entering into agreement with. In some cases, you can do a search of the company name and you may come up with other websites they manage and/or are related to. This information should give you better knowledge about the company, and possibly, the other websites (which could be run by the company or its competitors) could offer similar services at a cheaper price!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Domain Consolidation

If you have managed to buy up multiple domain names and are having trouble keeping track of when to renew them, a product available at most domain registrars for Com and Net names is available that allows you to consolidate your expiration dates for a domain. To avoid the legal hassles involved in trying to get a domain back, if you forget to renew, the domain gets deleted or the domain is sold to another third party, having your domains expire on a certain day or dividing your domains up to have a certain amount expire during certain times of the year is now possible.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

E-mail Address

If you want to avoid some unnecessary spam in your inbox, one helpful tip is to type out your e-mail address in words: myemailATexampleDOTcom. This lowers the chance of your e-mail address being found as it will not have the normal symbols associated with it and automated programs will be less likely to grab it.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Online Shopping - Company Information

As online shopping grows, there are many more marketplaces than just the national retailer websites. If you find a deal that is too good to be true, you might be right. However, if you want to check up on the website owner, you should attempt to contact the company by phone and e-mail to make sure their contact information is up to date. If nothing is posted on their website, you can also check the Whois database and look for the publicly available contact information for the domain name. If you get someone to answer on the other end, ask a couple of questions about how long they have been in business and their return policy, so that you get more comfortable to do business with them online. If you cannot find any valid contact information, be cautious.