Don’t Make This Critical Website Mistake Like Microsoft Did

If you’ve been online for some time, you may recall the day when Microsoft let it’s Hotmail.com domain expire which shut down the free email service until a Good Samaritan paid to renew it. It seems crazy that a company as large as Microsoft would not have had better systems in place, but they aren’t the only ones. A company I used to work for had a Fortune 500 client who will remain nameless, who allowed their secure certificate expire which meant they could not process credit card for a few days (and the site generated about $500,000 per day!) I even did a good deed myself and renewed the domain of another large company similar to the Hotmail story, yet it generated no press for me. That was long before I really understood how to connect with the media (I’ve been doing this since 1999.)

So what is the takeaway for you? Make sure you keep your domains and other web services up to date. For me, that means having them renewed a good 30 days out. If you need to, set an annual recurring calendar event to make sure you don’t miss them, and keep in mind this includes services such as:

  • Domain renewals
  • Web Hosting renewals
  • Email marketing system renewals (you would be amazed at how many times I come across an expired email capture form.)
  • Payment processing services
  • Secure certificates

You get the idea. Basically any services, which if interrupted, would result in your website either not working or not functioning the way it is intended to.

If you happen to run a business where you manage a clients website, you can be a hero by tracking this for them. They will really appreciate it and it will show them that you are on top of things.


All About Anthony

Anthony Kirlew is the Chief Marketing Officer at Infinion Marketing. He has nearly two decades of experience in the field of digital marketing. He launched his first SEO (Search Engine Optimization) Firm in 1999, and has worked with some of the largest brands online including The Knot and iUniverse.com. His resume includes founding several online businesses, as well as leading business development efforts for the Search Marketing Division of Web.com. He is a frequent guest blogger, speaker and author on topics related to Digital Marketing, social media, and website best practices.
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