Creating a domain name policy

Choosing and maintaining your domain name(s) is an integral part of managing your web presence — how you're found and remembered by your customers. Ideally you should have a domain name policy which provides a consistent, defined approach to choosing and managing your domain names and which documents how you will manage those domains over time.

A policy helps you manage the risk of having multiple, variably branded websites, with short-term life spans. Proactive domain name management also ensures good processes for registering and managing domain names and their records.

Consistent web presence

Have a policy that outlines roles and responsibilities and your approach to domain name creation and management, to prevent a fractured, unprofessional look for your agency on the web.

Manage your registered domains to avoid risk

  • Have a record of all your domains and (for non-.govt.nz domains) know when they are due for renewal. It is a good idea to ensure that someone is responsible for this task.
  • Ensure that you use a reliable domain name registrar to secure any non .govt.nz domains (e.g., .co.nz/) that your agency uses.
  • Reduce the risk of cybersquatting, link farming or phishing by using .govt.nz as your primary domain and consider securing the equivalent .org.nz and .co.nz domains as well, to prevent them being misused.
  • Reduce costs
  • Fewer domains means less overhead, in management and DNS hosting (for .govt.nz) and in registration charges (for other types of domain name).
  • Make sure you cancel your domains if they are no longer required.
  • Search engine optimisation
  • Most people use a search engine to find websites. Use fourth level domain names for new projects or existing functions where you can, as your existing site will already be indexed and the sub-domain will inherit this ranking, making it easier for users to find your site.
  • .govt.nz domains often rank higher in search engines so consider using one as your primary domain.