The Spamhaus Project

best-practice

Best practice for newly registered domains: PART 1 - Ask yourself a question

The first in the series for new domain owner - starting at the beginning of the decision making process. Do you really need a new domain?

by The Spamhaus TeamFebruary 14, 20233 minutes reading time

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Introduction

Whether you’re running a billion-dollar organization or the local hairdressers, there are some fundamentals that anyone considering purchasing a new domain name needs to think about….### STOP before you purchase!

Before you go and buy a shiny, new domain, first ask yourself the following question:

“Do I really need a new domain?”

Think about it, long and hard. Consider the fact that with a new domain name comes a considerable amount of work for you (or someone in your team) to undertake in terms of preparatory administration and, if you plan to use it for email marketing, warming up.

Aside from this, don’t you already have a domain name? Most businesses and organizations own a domain name that has a good reputation associated with it, as opposed to a new domain name that has no reputation associated with it. If you’re reading this wondering what “reputation” has to do with this any of this, we recommend you read “What is domain reputation” before reading on.

Don’t purchase new domains for marketing!

Even if you want to run an email marketing series, we rarely recommend purchasing a new domain from which to run a campaign. Many people refer to these kinds of domains as “cousin domains”, here’s an example: You already own examplecompany.com and decide to purchase marketing-email-examplecompany.com. The problem is that even to the untrained eye, that extended domain name looks “phishy”, pardon the pun!

A real-life example of recipients distrusting a domain is when the Marriott hotel chain was hacked several years ago. Marriott started to send emails from a completely different (and new) domain, marriot-emailing.com …. sadly, because the domain looked like a phishing domain, very few of the intended recipients read the important communications contained within the emails.

Subdomains are your friend

In a nutshell, don’t spread your reputational load over multiple domains. More often than not, the right decision is to use a sub-domain on your existing domain. This provides better anchoring not only to your brand but also your domain asset. And remember – your domain is an important asset.

We have heard of stories of IT directors insisting their Marketing team get a new domain so they (the marketing team) don’t ruin the reputation of the corporate domain through bad sending practices. This is a huge red flag! If this is the case, the marketing team in question should not be allowed to send a single email from ANY domain before they get training on deliverability best practices.

Ok. It’s a new business, and I do need a new domain.

In which case, before you go and purchase the domain immediately, please read the second part in this series to ensure you are making the right choices relating to service providers and also have a good understanding of the fundamentals required to build up your domain reputation as quickly as possible, ensuring that your domain becomes a valuable asset, not a burden.

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