Should You Transfer Your Domain From Go Daddy?

Over the past week, there's been a discussion about Go Daddy's decision to support SOPA. Then, it's decision to not support it. It's been a tough week for Go Daddy. One of many tough weeks for the domain registrar giant over the past year.

With all the discussion about Go Daddy's decisions, and their apparent actions to block outbound domain transfers, should you join the masses and transfer your domain tomorrow?

There are three things you should weigh before you make the big move:

  • Legislation
  • Cost
  • Ease

Let's take a look at these a bit more.

  LEGISLATION SOPA, the Stop Online Piracy Act, is a big deal. If you're ever on the Internet, you should pay attention. Here's a quick recap from Wikipedia:

Proponents of the bill say it protects the intellectual property market and corresponding industry, jobs and revenue, and is necessary to bolster enforcement of copyright laws especially against foreign websites.[5] Opponents say that it infringes on First Amendment rights, is Internet censorship,[6] will cripple the Internet,[7] and will threaten whistle-blowing and other free speech.[8]

How do you feel about that? If there's a strong stirring, and you don't want to be associated (ie, give money to) with a company who does support this bill, then you should move.

If your response is "Eh, they'll work it out", then it's probably not enough, on its own, to push you to transfer your domain.

  COST Cost is always a motivator for change. If something costs too much based on the value (or perceived value), then change is imminent.

In this case, it doesn't seem like costs are that much of an issue. The cost to park your domain with Go Daddy vs. other registrars is pretty similar (per domain). I imagine, in the long-run, these costs will even themselves out depending on the increasing / decreasing needs for the domain(s).

  EASE How much disruption to your business / site will be caused by transferring the domain? Likely, not much - if all you are moving is the domain it should be a relatively simple and quick process (although, Go Daddy seems to be pitching a fit for those transferring their domains out).

If you are looking to move other business away from Go Daddy, this is where it might get a bit tricky. Who is hosting your site? Your email? Will a new host support specific technologies needed for your site? Does it work with Google Apps? This will cause a bit of a headache and some thumb twirling.

Then, there's the ease of doing business with Go Daddy. When going online to order products / services (even just renewing), it's kind of a pain as they push so many other options - you know, hard upselling. It's not my thing, but everyone else seems to be upselling when you are going through the check-out process (Amazon, VistaPrint to name two). It's a lot, and can get really confusing.

Oh, then there's this confidence thing - Do you have confidence that another registrar will be around in a few years?

  YOU SHOULD TRANSFER, IF... The two latter points - Cost and Ease - on their own, probably don't warrant a transfer. I mean, if they were such a big deal, you probably would have made the move already. Right?

But throw in the first point and the thinking may change a bit. If you've always thought about moving but there wasn't an arguable reason for it, the combination of points 1 and 2 or 3 might be the push you're looking for.

For me, I'm not moving.

Yes, I oppose SOPA (I won't always defend what you say, but I'll always defend the right for you to say it.) and yes I've reached out to my local / state representative to voice my opposition. But I'm not sure I'm ready to jump on the anti-Go Daddy bandwagon.

Yet.