Get Your Website Domain Before You Incorporate!

I had to learn this the hard way, so I’m happy to share the knowledge to help you avoid the same issue!

I am in the middle of starting up a new company.  We came up with a creative name, and I checked the domains before we decided to incorporate, and the domain was free and clear.  The price was less than $15.  All is great, right?

Well, we incorporated the company on March 29 (filed for a C corp in Delaware and Tennessee).  Because of personal reasons, I was delayed in getting the domain reserved.  But a week later, I go into GoDaddy to reserve my domain, and guess what?  They tell me (and I quote):  “Congratulations!  Your domain is available at GoDaddy Auctions for $750!”  Start-ups cannot afford that kind of pricing! 

Needless to say, I was livid. Stupid me for not reserving it when I checked it.  I can’t prove it, but my hypothesis is that GoDaddy monitors incorporation filings and then snaps up the domain. That is just plain sneaky and crosses the ethics line, as far as I am concerned.  I’m sure pure capitalists would say that is smart business.

The end result was that I tacked “tn” on the end of my domain name and got the domain for less than $15 (I didn’t want to reserve through them but my IT resource said they have the best customer service).  They had a survey at the end of the domain registration process.  Needless to say, I rated them the absolute lowest on  trustworthiness and a being a business partner.

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