Domain Resellers Can Be Risky

Domain Resellers

Domain names like,, and are how we get to websites on the internet. You will need a domain name if you want a website for your business. While many large public hosting companies also sell domains, the location your website is hosted and your domain registration is handled by two very different services. It’s not uncommon for businesses to purchase their domain name through domain resellers, but this can create problems later on.

What Is A Domain Reseller?

Let’s say you own an ice cream shop and want the website domain name to be Provided the name was available, you would need to buy that domain name so no one else could use it.

Registering A Domain

All the domain names in the world and their ownership information are kept in large databases by companies known as registries. You can’t buy a domain name directly from them. Instead, certified companies known as registrars have special access to add, change, and transfer domain names stored in the registry databases.

Registrars must be certified by ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers). This non-profit organization maintains the regulations and deals with allocating domain names and IP addresses, among other things.

Many registrars also offer DNS hosting, which tells the internet where your website is physically, so your domain name takes people to your website.

Resellers Do It For You

It’s entirely possible to go directly through a registrar like for a domain name. However, some smaller hosting companies also offer to sell you a domain along with website hosting, but they aren’t actually registrars.

Becoming a certified registrar costs many thousands of dollars per year. Unless you sell upwards of tens of thousands of domains a year, it just isn’t feasible for many small websites hosting businesses. So to offer domain names to their clients, they become domain resellers.

A reseller has a special relationship with a registrar that lets them register domains through the registrar.

Problems With Using A Domain Reseller

There are some very reputable large resellers out there. However, the biggest danger business owners run into is any Tom, Dick, or Harry can become a domain reseller. Many small discount hosting services rent their server space and offer domain name reselling on the side. This creates the following problems.

  1. You aren’t always getting a great price with a reseller.
  2. You are at the mercy of their customer service skills if you want to transfer your domain down the road.
  3. It’s possible to purchase a domain from a reseller who doesn’t know what they are doing.
  4. It’s common for smaller resellers to go out of business, leaving you with a headache if you ever want to transfer your domain.
We See It All The Time At Big Rig

One nightmare we have experienced is the case of an RV park that purchased its domain name from a reseller that went out of business. They sold the park to a new owner who is having Big Rig build the new website. Most of the time transferring a domain name from one owner to the other is quite painless. However, because the reseller went out of business, a huge headache was created for all.

To get the transfer done, the business is required to go through the process to prove the original owners owned the domain and have the right to transfer it to the new party. The whole thing can take up to two months.

Imagine having to wait an extra two months for your business site to be up because of a transaction with a defunct company that happened years before you even took over the property.

Minimize The Risk

ICANN has the following advice about registering your domain, “Many companies that are not accredited by ICANN offer domain registration services – some are reselling names obtained from accredited registrars. ICANN recommends that you deal directly with an accredited registrar.”

You can find a complete list of ICANN Accredited Registrars here.

Big Rig Can Help You Avoid Risky Domain Resellers

When you trust Big Rig with your business website needs, you are getting a technology and security first website package. We not only design, build, and manage your business site, but we also own the servers that it’s hosted on. We have experience dealing with many of the top registrars and domain resellers on the market, and we are more than happy to advise you on which ones are reputable and safe choices for your domain name.

Schedule a call and let’s build you the solid business site you need to succeed!

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