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11 common reasons why domain owners fail to renew their domain name

This post is an excerpt from our white paper – “12 Things Every Domain Owner Needs to Know“.

Back in 2014 I embarked on a journey to find the worst of the worst of domain expirations. I was surprised and shocked to find some companies and I had no choice but to include them on our “all time list”. Some people contacted me with a few notable mentions I missed, and some people chimed in with their knowledge on why that might have happened in the first place. Months went by, a conference here, a Skype call there, and I ended up with a list of 11 common reasons why domain owners fail to renew their domain name.

If you know something I haven’t included in this list, or you lost a domain name and now you are angry, don’t be afraid to share your story in the comment section. It might help somebody on the other side of the world or your first door neighbor.

  1. Forgetting which email is listed as the owner
  2. Indecisiveness on whether to renew the domain name or not
  3. Ignoring the notification email from the registrar
  4. Missing out (due to the spam box or other reasons) on the registrar notification email
  5. Person that was responsible (and his email) left the company
  6. Domain owner doesn’t control the email listed as the owner
  7. Domain owner forgets completely that he owns the domain (could be he/she registered with a registrar he/she doesn’t usually use)
  8. Owner forgot to renew the domain where his email was on (the email can’t work without the original domain name)
  9. Owner forgets to set up email forwarding from “email on WHOIS” to “email he/she reads”
  10. Domain owner doesn’t have an “auto-renew” option on the domain name
  11. Credit card on file is expired, so the “auto-renew” never takes place


Another great way of decreasing the chances of domain expiration is by registering the domain name for the next ten years. If you are serious about your business $100 shouldn’t pose a great expense, and the risk is reduced significantly in the next 10 years.

Find more tips like this in our free white paper “Domain Disclosure: Dirty Dozen“.

Written by Goran Duskic

I am the founder and CEO at WhoAPI. Entrepreneur for more than a decade in the hosting and domain industry. Sold my previous company. 500 Startups and StartLabs alumni. Author of a white paper "Domain Disclosure: Dirty Dozen" and eBook "26 Fundraising Questions for Startups".

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