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Okay so there are a few legitimate reasons why you may choose to sign over your domain name, maybe a family member that you can trust, but I’ve been noticing a trend lately with web developers who are making strange requests to their customers to literally transfer their domain name to the designer with consent. Thus, giving complete control to the web developer. Now why, would a web developer want this control? If they’ve designed the site, the domain registrar should for the record be the business owner, not the web developer.
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If they go bust, you lose your domain. All your printing and everything else with that domain is lost, including your domain’s email hosting. They could even hold your domain name to ransom, I mean since they own it now, it belongs to them. You belong to them. You don’t ever need to sign over a domain name to anybody else for one reason; It’s nuts. They can have the hosting and most likely bets are you are already paying your web developer for the hosting of your website at a set fee per month which is just fine.
Convenience Can Be Dangerous
It may seem convenient; perhaps the developer sounded convincing when he told you it would save you money, hassle and that it’s just easier for him if he has ownership of your domain. Would you hand him the keys to your car? No way. The potential of your business is at risk as long as it lies in the hands of somebody who could compromise it; not stating your designer is a shark by any definition but with business failure rates these days I wouldn’t want my domain name shut down after paying thousands in marketing and printing. You can ask politely but consider avoiding any misunderstandings with the developer; if it goes south you have serious problems.
Getting Your Domain Back
This is tricky. You need to make sure there aren’t any misunderstandings firstly. If your designer is a real bad apple, he’ll only see value in your domain providing you really ‘need it’. Best way to get it back is to explain you’re changing domain name to something else and that you’d like the old domain name signed over to yourself so you can get your other “developer” to redirect it to the new one; again stipulating it’s merely an add-on and not something your entire business falls on. Avoid annoyance and aggression, keep calm and you shouldn’t have any issues. If you’ve legally signed it over to him and he’s playing hard ball, then you may as well give up and put it down to experience.
Your Domain Name is the Key to Your Crown Jewels
Ultimately, where technical means are concerned, everything hinges on whether you have control over your domain name.