Web design companies have a lot of control over their clients. I refer to this as “False Power”. The sad reality is that most of their clients don’t even know they are stuck in this potentially painful predicament. This power is usually exercised when a client of a web design company finds a better deal on hosting for their web site and they simply want to switch their hosting provider, or when the “client” wants to upgrade their web site for a better rate than their current web development provider is offering.
You get the point! Too much power is given to the web design company. I truly believe that it is your right to shop for better prices and it is your right to own your domain name even if you didn’t have a hand in registering your domain name.
As the owner of the website, you put your trust into your web design company to represent your business appropriately and honestly, only to find out down the road that honesty isn’t in their vocabulary.
I truly believe there should be a law against web design companies that can be summarized as such: for any domain name registered by the web design company on behalf of their client, the domain name may not be disputed or need to be disputed, the domain name is automatically owned by the client and is automatically bound by their web development contract.
With every new venture, there is always going to be loopholes. From the aforementioned example, what if there is no contract? If you are reading this and are in the process of searching for a web design company, please ENSURE that you have a contract drafted, outlining everything you are entitled to and that you have sole rights to your domain name.
What most business owners fail to realize is that their domain name is as important as registering their business name itself. I will repeat that… Your domain name is “hot real estate”, would you want someone else owning your property?
The same applies for your domain name. Don’t get caught with your pants down while asking, why don’t I own my domain name. It is as important as owning your own company name. There are people out there searching for suckers to take their domain name – don’t be the one who gets caught!
The best solution is to go out and register your domain name BEFORE you hire a web design company. This ultimately gives you the power over your domain name. At any given time, you can go back and log into your “domain name registrant” in order to switch your web site to any hosting company you choose.
When searching for an “all around” package for your web design project, make sure that your hosting is suitable for your needs. 95% of all web design projects don’t need a large hosting package that costs between $150-$500 a year. The most you should pay for your hosting in this case is around $100.00 a year, no more.
Make sure your web design company gives you the “FTP (File Transfer Protocol)” access to your website. The FTP allows you to hire another web design company to go in and update your website at any time. Without the FTP information, no one can update your website besides the original web development company or hosting company that you hired.
Be weary of web design companies that don’t provide contracts for all of their projects. Be careful with your domain name; make sure that in the end, you own all rights to your domain name, not someone else.