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.NET, Powered by Verisign

net_logoThe world of domains names is about to get really complicated and messy, but in the midst of the change one domain stands ready and willing to help your customer’s get global credibility. As one of the first web domains, .NET is instantly recognizable domain around the globe.

Powered by Verisign, .NET has grown to over 15 million. Its a great alternative to .COM as there are no specific legal or geographic qualification to get a .NET domain name registered. So now is a great time to remind your customers of the value and strength of .NET as a preferred choice.

Download the New Assets
To support your efforts, Verisign has developed new brand assets to help get the word out and establish .NET as the preferred alternative domain extension. Head over to our Marketing Resources page to download the latest logos, banner ads, and videos you can start using right away on your site and marketing materials.

Earn $100 Account Credit
We’ve also set up an extra incentive you can take advantage of today. Download the new .NET assets and incorporate them in your site; then via this form show us a screenshot and we’ll deposit $50 into your OpenSRS account. Go the next step of writing and distributing a pro-.NET asset, such as a blog post or an email to your customers/prospects, and show us what you did for another $50 credit. That is an easy $100 for each and every reseller to take advantage of today.

We’ve Lowered pricing on several Thawte SSL Certificates

thawte_logoWe have some good news to share: we’ve permanently lowered prices for five different Thawte SSL Certificates.

  • SSL 123 – $55 from $59
  • SSL Web Server – $90 from $99
  • Thawte Wildcard – $320 from $390
  • SGC Super – $170 from $249
  • SSL Web Server EV – $120 from $195

As the first International Certificate Authority, Thawte makes an excellent choice to offer to your customers. And since its backed by Symantec you can have faith you’re offering your customers a reliable certificate.

Campaign Resources
Be sure to check out the marketing resources page to assist you in growing your Thawte business.

Recommendations for Securing Names in new gTLDs

Last week’s post regarding pre-registration resonated with a lot of readers, and it also sparked a conversation internally about where pre-registration fits in the bigger picture. We ultimately boiled it down to the needs and intentions of registrants, and some recommendations on what you can do as a reseller.

What pre-registrations really are

What is being marketed as “pre-registration” in the context of new TLDs is generally more an “expression of interest”. It doesn’t give any guarantee to get a domain, but merely says “whenever this new TLD becomes available for everyone, please let me know, because I would be interested in purchasing this name.” They can however help registrants to not miss the launch of their desired extension. It’s just important to note that those “expressions of interest” do not help to secure a specific name.

So, what do you tell clients who want to secure specific names upon the launch of a new gTLD, if pre-registrations don’t help? The answer depends on what kind of name it is.

How to secure your brand or trademark

There’s good news for holders of registered trademarks: you’re among the first in line for every new TLD that launches! But still, to reserve this prime spot in the queue and get a domain ahead of everyone else, you need to do two things:

  1. Submit your trademark record to the Trademark Clearinghouse (TMCH), and
  2. Apply for the desired domain name during the Sunrise phase of the TLD.

If your brand is registered with the TMCH, it will then be eligible to be registered as a domain name in every registry sunrise phase (some exceptions may apply). There’s a charge for submitting a mark to the TMCH, and a separate charge for every sunrise application. OpenSRS will enable you as a reseller to submit marks to the TMCH and apply for names during sunrise on behalf of your clients.

A nice additional benefit of using the TMCH is the Claims service, which will warn others intending to register your trademark that they are potentially violating your intellectual property. In case they still go ahead and register, the trademark owner will be notified and can take the necessary steps to suspend the name.

While the TMCH and sunrise phases are a good solution for holders of registered marks, what if your brand or product name isn’t a trademark, but you still want to secure the name?

How to secure your “Very Important” Domains

Landrush is your friend. Once a new gTLD has completed their mandatory sunrise launch phase for trademarks, we expect most registries to offer priority registrations during a landrush phase. Landrush means anybody can apply for any name that hasn’t already been taken during sunrise, but for a premium registration fee. Auctions will typically resolve multiple applications for the same name. Some registries will also sell high-value names as premium names, with a specific price tag on each of them.

Although Landrush registrations have a higher cost, you will still be ahead of the crowd waiting for general availability.

But what if this all sounds too expensive, and you just want to try your luck securing a regular name?

Getting a name at the regular price

After the names in highest demand have already been taken during sunrise and landrush, new gTLDs will enter their general availability phase. During this phase, we will conduct real pre-registrations, which is placing a binding order on hold in a queue at a time when the launch date, pricing and requirements are known. OpenSRS will open such pre-registration queues for general availability phases only prior to launch. At launch, those queued orders will be submitted to the registry one after the other, and you might be lucky enough to get a name.

So if you are a reseller and have decided to take “expressions of interest” from your clients, you would contact the client prior to launch with info on launch phases and dates of that TLD, and invite him to place a Sunrise or Landrush application or a binding pre-registration for General Availability.

If you want to get active now, taking expressions of interest is one thing you can do, the other is preparing the brand owners among your client base to submit their marks to the TMCH.

The Hype of Preregistration – Don’t be fooled

The upcoming launch of new gTLDs has lots of people excited, but there is also a lot of confusion and misperceptions going around. Pre-registration in particular is causing a lot of headaches as it introduces an unofficial step in the process; in reality its just a marketing ploy.

The Trademark Clearinghouse is the one and only ticket to securing your brand during the Sunrise phases; which will be taking place over the next 2-3 years. ICANN still has a long way to go before all the new strings are released; and many of the most popular strings are contested by multiple parties.

Remind your customers we still have a long way to go before all the dust will settle. OpenSRS will be providing resellers with an interface to offer TMCH applications to protect trademarks and brands and give your customers first right of refusal.

goMobi update coming August 29

gomobi_iphone-rOn August 29, goMobi plans to release an update to the goMobi mobile website service. Full details on the new features and enhancements to goMobi are available in a PDF provided by goMobi. You can view that document in this article in the Release Notes area of our Help & Support Portal.

Some of the highlights of this release include:

  • New feature: new WYSIWYG editor
  • New feature: drag and drop within features
  • New feature: additional third-party analytics provider
  • New feature: added Vimeo video support, in addition to YouTube
  • Usability improvement: add multiple recipients from site forms
  • Usability improvement: Find Us feature shows nearest location; enlarged location map and addition text field for custom directions.

The update will happen automatically for all goMobi sites. There’s nothing you need to do to enable access to these new features on sites.

Verisign celebrates 15 million .net registrations

Congratulations are in order as Verisign announced .net has surpassed 15 million registrations, putting it in fourth place behind .com. With more than 110 million .com domains registered, .net is proving itself to be a great alternative that works on a global scale.

net info graphic

15 Facts about .net:

  1. Almost 139,000 domains registered in other top-level domains (TLDs) immediately forward to the same name, but as a .net site.
  2. The first domain name to ever exist was a .net. While the first domain name to be registered was the now famous Symbolics.com, it is a lesser known fact that the very first domain name ever to exist was Nordu.net. Nordu.net was created by the registry with the same name as the first Internet rootserver (nic.nordu.net). Symbolics.com later went on to be the first domain name to go through the full registration process.
  3. Due to its unique status .net is not among the six other original generic top-level-domains in RFC920, the document which outlines the original domain name conventions. It was still created on the same day as the others though – 1/1/1985.
  4. Today the .net zone sits at just over 15 million registered domains, roughly 10 times more than in the year 2000 when there were about 1.5 million registered.
  5. The .net zone has doubled in size since 2006.
  6. In 2012, the average character length of .net domain names created was 12 characters.
  7. As social media grows in popularity, a trend of registering domain names and pointing them to social media accounts is emerging; most notably on Facebook. As of March 2013, 6,503 .net domain names pointed to Facebook. This is up from 5,039 in March 2012. That’s almost a 23% annual growth rate.
  8. Approximately half of the 15 million .net domains registered today are registered within the United States.
  9. .net domain names are hosted in more than 200 countries worldwide.
  10. Almost half (48%) of the .net domains registered in India have e-Commerce functionality on their sites.
  11. A single .net domain name can be registered in as many as 350 different native languages thanks to internationalized-domain-names (IDNs). IDNs make the Internet more globally accessible and functional by enabling domain names in non-ASCII characters.
  12. Verisign applied for 3 transliterations of .net in Hangul, Simplified Chinese, and Devanagari last year through ICANN’s new gTLD program.
  13. The percentage of the total base of .net domain names that are registered in Japan (2.51%) is almost twice that of the percentage of the total base of .com domains that are registered in Japan (1.43%).
  14. DNSSEC (Domain Name System Security Extensions) adds security to the DNS. Compared to .com, .net has almost double the percentage of DNSSEC enabled domains today.
  15. Today, more that 99.9% of 6+ character .net domain names are available.

Trustwave Premium EV SSL on Sale for July

trustwave_logoFor the month of July, we’re dropping the price on Trustwave’s Premium EV SSL to just $90 per year (from $135). Making it the best-priced EV certificate available from OpenSRS.

The reduced price is already reflected in your account. All you have to do is extend a discount to your customers to get more of them dressed up with a green bar. Here are all of the available benefits of the Trustwave Premium EV SSL certificate:

  • $250,000 Warranty
  • Extended Validation—highest organization validation
  • Green Address Bar in web browsers
  • Up to 256-bit Encryption
  • Free (Unlimited) Reissues for the life of the certificate
  • “Trusted Commerce” dynamic Site Seal
  • 100% Trusted Root Guarantee

Learn more about our Trustwave certificates.

Announcing the new Pick Your Own ccTLD Promotion

Service Guy - Flags

Starting today you can choose a special discounted price for new registrations on a ccTLD of your choice for the remainder of the year. Pass the savings on to your customers, enjoy the extra margin or choose something in between.

We’ve assembled a list of 22 ccTLDs from all over the world so you’re sure to find something you like. Have a look and complete the form to let us know your selection. The request will be processed within 2-3 business days and won’t expire until December 31, 2013.

Get started: Choose your own ccTLD promotion!

Ting First Customer Bonus

PrintIf you’ve been thinking about promoting Ting to your customers, now is a great time to start because we’ve added a new bonus. When you sign up your first customer to Ting using your Offers referral URL code, your OpenSRS account will be credited a bonus $50.

But I know some of you are thinking, “Darn, I just signed up my first customer to Ting last week.” Don’t despair, the computer code behind the bonus is going all the way back to March 1, 2013.

Please note, regardless of when your first customer signs up, the bonuses will be applied at the beginning of each month when the process runs.

If you haven’t experienced Ting yet, or are unsure of network coverage in your area, but would like to before recommending it to customers, sign up for the Taste of Ting trial and we’ll get you set up. We have a bit of a waiting list, but we’re working our way through it as quickly as possible.

.PW Now Available

OpenSRS is pleased to announce general availability for .PW domains to all of our resellers. Pricing is $10/year for new, renew and transfer.

whd-2012

.PW is the namespace for individuals and businesses who want a professional presence on the web. There are no restrictions, so anyone can own a .PW domain name. .PW domains are affordable, available, secure and reputable.

Why .PW?

When you get online, you want to project a professional image. Whether you’re a business or an individual, you want the world to know that you are a part of a reputed network – the Professional Web. .PW gives you all this and more:

  • It’s Open – Anyone can register a .PW name
  • It’s Available – A completely new namespace, with unlimited domain options
  • It’s Affordable – Get a quality name at a reasonable price
  • It’s Secure – Best industry practices: UDRP, Trademark friendly

New gTLDs and OpenSRS

By now you’ve heard about the new gTLD program in the works at ICANN; concerning the text right of the dot. It has been in the works for quite a while now and looks like it will be another year or two before all the dust settles on the initial 2,000+ applications. So far we haven’t really talked about it, unlike some of the other registrars, because frankly there isn’t a whole lot of actionable news yet to share. We have however been following the developments quite closely, and like the rest of our domain business we’re going to bring our resellers as many of the new public gTLDs as possible.

In the meantime, we’ve set up a new page on the site explaining our position and outlook, along with a high-level overview of the roll-out timeline. We’ll be updating the page as new major developments come out, and when we get closer to actually having a new gTLD in the OpenSRS platform we’ll make sure you know about it in advance. We also invite you to hop into our community forum and ask us and the community any questions you have about the new gTLDs.

Which Site Seal do People Trust the Most? (2013 Survey Results)

We just found some interesting third-party research from the Baymard Institute regarding consumer’s perceptions of SSL and Trust seals. The survey, from January 2013, specifically focused in on e-commerce websites and gave the following results, showing Trust seals outpacing all of the SSL seals with the exception of Norton.

Its an interesting article and I recommend clicking through to read more about the results and some of the implications. Including their suggestion sites show multiple seals to increase perceived site security; while also of course improving site security.

Survey of SSL Seals

Ting Offers: Updated for BYOSD

Great news! We’ve updated the backend of Ting Offers to now include customers who bring their own Sprint device to Ting; including phones purchased through Glyde. Previously customers who chose those options didn’t receive an account credit and the resellers who referred them didn’t receive credit for the account. As of Monday, we’ve updated the Offers system to support those customers who will now receive a $25 service credit on their account and resellers will receive their referral credit in the same fashion as new customers.

In regards to the end-user experience for BYOD; we know it still needs some work to provide a cleaner and clearer path for customers. Rest assured, if a user clicks through your URL to get the cookie, and then visits ting.com/byod, the end user will get a $25 credit and the reseller is assigned to that user for their bounty or revenue share. We are actively working to provide the end user a clearer path for this process so they know they’re getting the discount throughout the process.

Just a reminder the Ting offers have changed as well today, as we’ve mentioned before. Please make sure you’ve updated your communications to reflect the changes.

As we continue to develop Ting and the Offers plan for resellers, please continue to send in your feedback.

A Review of 2012 at OpenSRS

It has been a busy year at OpenSRS, so I thought I’d take the time to look back at some of the highlights.

ccTLDs

We bought epag in 2011, helping us add over 100 new second and third-level extensions to our portfolio. But doing so took plenty of development and time incorporating them into OpenSRS, making it easier for you to do business around the globe all from a single platform. And we’re not done yet!

Working Better with Third-Party Systems

We joined the Parallels Domain Name Network early in the year so resellers can signup to sell OpenSRS directly within Parallels products. Plus we’ve been testing updated and more robust plugins for WHMCS.

goMobi Updates

We’ve had goMobi available for a couple years now, but I think you’d agree some great new features were rolled out this year to make it worth a mention. Some of the new features included: custom icons, live previews, more sharing options, more site templates, custom background images, plus many more. We’ve seen incredible interest in this product, and can’t wait to see the new sites you build with it.

Ting Offers

We rolled out a revenue sharing Offer for Ting, the Tucows mobile phone MVNO in the US. While still new and relatively small, we’re very excited about the growth in Ting and working with our resellers to expand its reach. And for resellers who’d like to try before recommending Ting, we launched trial program called Taste of Ting.

Webmail 5.6 

Our hosted email product got a nice facelift on the front-end and some much needed upgrades in the backend. Although email suffered some unfortunate outages this year, we’ve removed the main source of the problem from our infrastructure. 2013 should be much smoother…

Super Low EV Pricing and UC/SAN Certs

In September we cut pricing on Extended Validation certificates across the board to be industry leading; and boy have you seized the opportunity. Making the jump from OV to EV certs for the better features is now a much smaller price gap; which is a great value proposition you can make to your customers. Perhaps 2013 will be the year DV certs go away…

Help & Support Upgrades

Part of being “Reseller Friendly” is providing a great customer support experience. To help us achieve this for you each we’ve begun rolling out a few ‘upgrades.’ First, the new support site which brings together in one place our announcements, knowledge bases and forums; plus a robust ticketing system. We’ve also begun asking for feedback after each ticket is resolved and closed; not only telling us how we’re doing but giving insights into how we can improve going forward.

We’re delighted to have you as part of the OpenSRS ecosystem; and we’re looking forward to surprising and delighting you in 2013.

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