Building and protecting your brand with new domains

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Do you remember the old days, when it was just .COM, .NET, and .ORG?

Those days are gone. Dozens of new top-level domain names (TLDs) are becoming available each month.

With so many TLDs to choose from, web marketers and online businesses are finding near infinite branding opportunities. At the same time, these new domains are creating a bit of confusion due to lack of information about their intended use, or the ways they can be put to use.

In speaking with customers, I’m starting to hear some recurring questions and opinions:

1) “Isn’t .COM still the best?

2) “I like the idea of a new domain, but wouldn’t people forget it?”

3) “I’m already happy with my current domain. I don’t need any more.”

To address these points, the .COM space is effectively used up. Yes, you may be able to find a custom domain to your liking, but if you follow this approach and are starting a new business, you may be forced to brand your business around what few .COM domains you find. The new TLDs were created to alleviate this issue of short supply.

Another benefit of the new TLD is that they free up businesses with lengthy names from needing to adopt a completely different domain. For example: ACME Portland Construction, while being able to register acmeportlandconstruction.com, may initially opt for something shorter like acmeportland.com, which leaves off that important part, “construction”. With the new TLDs, the company would now be able to register acmeportland.construction. The alternate domain is shorter and more memorable, not to mention that a portion of the business name has been directly integrated with the TLD. Even if they wanted to find a shorter domain, ACME.build would accomplish the goal, while using the TLD to describe the business. It makes long-term branding of the business simpler.

The new TLDs make it possible to dovetail a company’s brand completely with their online identity, creating a unified image in both the physical and virtual business worlds. TLDs are available for hundreds of professions and industries. Artists can choose from .MEDIA and .PAINT; photographers can use .PHOTO. Builders and contractors? Try .PLUMBING or .LIGHTING. Real estate can now find the perfect .LAND or .HOMES space. The list is endless, and so are the possibilities.

Finally, there’s the point of search engine optimization (SEO) to consider. As one web marketing blog pointed out, Google has altered some of its search algorithms that imply the new TLDs will have a greater fighting chance and not be treated as second class domains when compared to .COM. Other blogs caution that many factors are at play, such as overall site relevance and content quality to consider.

Indeed, if you have an established .COM brand, you may be fine passing up on the new TLDs, unless you wish to lock down a few that are very close to, if not identical with, your full business name. Register those domains and turn them into redirects to your .COM. Done. Consider this one way to prevent domain squatting or brand impersonation on the part of a third party. ACME Portland Construction, for example, would probably want that .CONSTRUCTION domain even if they are happy with their .COM, simply to prevent someone from fabricating a convincing forgery of a domain using the .CONSTRUCTION space.

And then, my mind wanders into trademark and copyright protection, and the many fights that have broken out over brand wars in the past. I’m also reminded of some of the steps our own company took to protect our brand and products, by registering our brand with the US Patent and Trade Office. Whether you want to go to those extents in securing your online identity, a simple and cost-effective way would be to first secure your company’s most important TLDs.

Depending upon which side of the domain aisle you reside, the prospect of new TLDs may be of greater or lesser importance to you. If you have any questions, please reach out to us and we’ll be happy to chat about new domains and what they can do for you. We’re always available at sales@canvashost.com, by phone at 503.914.1118, or toll-free at 800.574.4299.

Thank you,

David Anderson, Owner
Canvas Host, LLC


$5 for a domain? That seriously .ROCKS!

.ROCKS is a generic-term, open domain, meaning it can be used for anything, by anybody. .ROCKS lends itself to bands and musicians looking to promote upcoming digital releases or shows, jewelers who incorporate gems into their merchandise, geologists who promote science discovery online, or rock climbers looking to share advice and buy gear. Whatever way “rocks” can be interpreted, .ROCKS can fit the definition, making it a fun and diverse TLD for businesses and individuals.

Now through March 2015, we’re thrilled to offer you .ROCKS registrations for just $5 per year, up to 10 years.

Here’s how to qualify:

1) Register a .ROCKS domain when signing up for web hosting on our online shopping cart;

OR

2) Register a .ROCKS domain for 3 or more years on our online shopping cart.

3) Future renewals of your .ROCKS will be charged at the standard $14.95/year renewal rate.

Click the banner below to get started!

.ROCKS_sale

With Canvas Host, your domain registration seriously .ROCKS! We hope you’ll take advantage of this amazing offer and register a new .ROCKS domain today.

Cheers,

David Anderson


17 new top-level domains

The newest top-level domain names have arrived. We’ve just rolled out another 17 domain namespaces, ready for your registration needs:

.AGENCY
We’re excited about this one. Suggestions: Insurance, talent, realty, ad, and acting agencies. $24.95/yr

.AUDIO
Great for equipment distributors, producers, sound artists, mixers, and tech bloggers. $14.95/yr

.BIO
Ideal for biology, biography, biophysics, biospheres, biopics, writers, and historians. $74.95/yr

.CLAIMS
perfect for insurance, agents, adjusters, or quote sources, filing and processing claims. $49.95/yr

.CONSULTING
Designed for consultants or companies that market to freelance consultants. $34.95/yr

.CREDIT
Well suited for credit card providers, creditors, credit score assessors, and repair groups. $99.95/yr

.DIGITAL
Relevant for defining what it means to go digital on the Web today. $34.95/yr

.FAIL
No one can lose with this TLD. Share fail videos or discuss politics or review businesses. $34.95/yr

.FINANCE
Great for brokers, advisors, analysts, forums, non-profits, review services, and bloggers alike. $49.95/yr

.FINANCIAL
What a great TLD! For day traders, investors, funds, accountants, or any financial theme. $49.95/yr

.FITNESS
It’s time to shape up. A popular search phrase, great for trainers, retailers, support groups and bloggers. $34.95/yr

.FUND
Focus on money transfers, business, economics, hedge and mutual funds, and more. $49.95/yr

.INSURE
Designed for auto, life, health, rental, dental, flood, car, and business insurance, and more. $49.95/yr

.REVIEWS
Now everyone has a voice. Use it for forums, websites, customer testimonials, and more. $24.95/yr

.ROCKS
What isn’t great about this one? Music, bands, jewelers, geologists, and science. It totally rocks! $14.95/yr OR $5/year when registered for 3+ years, or paired with any new hosting plan!

See this post on our website about this exclusive offer:
$5/year .ROCKS domains!

.ROCKS_sale

.VOTING
Get your vote on with. Politics, polling, activism, opinions – it’s great for anyone with a voice. $74.95/yr

.WTF
Seriously??? A universal expression of disbelief, anger, or astonishment, now in a domain space. $34.95/yr

Look up and register all of these great domain names direct from Canvas Host:
http://www.canvashost.com/domain/tld/


An update: 24 hours into our free .ORG domain offer

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It’s been a dizzying 24 hours. With the launch of our free .ORG promotional campaign, we’ve registered dozens of domains for current and new customers.

A .ORG domain can be registered by anyone, though historically they are popular for non-profits, charities, volunteer organizations, and other community-oriented groups, as well as environmental companies, organic farms and co-operative groups, and publishers.

Our offer is genuine: Through the end of December 2014, the first year of any new .ORG registration is free. If you’ve ever wondered about getting a .ORG, now’s the time. There’s no obligation and no requirement to purchase anything from Canvas Host. Sure, we hope you’ll love the .ORGs and consider registering some .COM’s, or perhaps checking out all the amazing new top-level domains (TLDs) we offer, like .COFFEE, .EXPERT, and .TIPS. Our goal, however, is simply to get the word out about the availability of .ORG as a contender in the domain space, and to help bring light to the fact that in today’s virtual realty market, any TLD can be branded effectively to create a unique identity for you and your business.

We invite you to check out .ORGs, and consider registering a few to add to your domain portfolio. If you already have a .COM, consider securing the same domain in a .ORG to protect your brand. The list goes on and on.

After December 31, 2014, regular pricing of $12.99 per year on .ORGs will resume. Additionally, if you are wanting to transfer or renew a .ORG, please be aware that this offer does not extend to those types of transactions and they are charged full price.

On behalf of everyone at Canvas Host, I want to thank you for your interest and support of our business over the years. We hope you are as excited as we are about free .ORG domains, and invite you to register some today!

http://www.canvashost.com/domain/promotions.php

– David Anderson, Principal


Important: update WordPress now

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WordPress has released an incremental upgrade, 3.9.2, that aims at correcting a potentially major vulnerability that leaves websites open to denial-of-service attacks, which could take down the website or even the web server it is hosted on.

Complete details of the release may be found here:

http://wordpress.org/news/2014/08/wordpress-3-9-2/

The release claims to resolve a major security issue in xmlrpc.php, and resolves the issue whereby xmlrpc.php can be used for a DDOS attack vector.  The reason we blocked access to xmlrpc.php on our shared servers and some dedicated servers, was due to this very security vulnerability. Unless all WordPress websites in our network are updated to 3.9.2 however, we will need to maintain the current block on xmlrpc.php.

Specific issues addressed by the release include:

  • Fixes a possible denial of service issue in PHP’s XML processing.
  • Fixes a possible but unlikely code execution when processing widgets (WordPress is not affected by default).
  • Prevents information disclosure via XML entity attacks in the external GetID3 library.
  • Adds protections against brute attacks against CSRF tokens.
  • Contains some additional security hardening, like preventing cross-site scripting that could be triggered only by administrators.

As a side note, if you have not upgraded WordPress in a while, please remember that as a customer of Canvas Host you are required to maintain and keep your software current. It protects your website and helps protect other customers’ websites as well. We will soon be upgrading PHP to version 5.4.x, which will require WordPress to be updated to continue to work.

wordpress.ad.172-wideWordPress Maintenance

If you need assistance with WordPress updates, please remember that we do offer $50 monthly WordPress maintenance, that includes regular security scans, advice on plugins, and 1/2 hour of “use it or lose it” consultation. For more information on this, please see our WordPress maintenance service page:

http://www.canvashost.com/hosting/wordpress-maintenance.php