What is the best process for back-ordering a .CA domain?
March 5, 2009 6:31 PM   Subscribe

What is the best process for back-ordering a .CA domain?

There is a .CA domain name expiring this May which I would like to secure for myself. I can say with certainty that the existing registrant will not be renewing the domain, and also don't expect anyone else to be after it either.

I know that various companies offer a back-ordering service for .CA domains, but I am seeking specific recommendations with an eye towards finding the best price. (I have other domains registered with GoDaddy, but they do not seem to offer .CA backordering.)

Were I to forgo using a back-ordering service, would I simply be able to register the domain for myself on the day it expires, or will there be some waiting/holding period before the domain becomes available to the public again?

Thanks in advance for any perspective or experience you can share!
posted by chudmonkey to Computers & Internet (4 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I don't follow .ca drops or deletion cycles, but typically speaking there is a process and you will not be able to secure it the day it expires.

Pool is the only back order service that I know of the offers .ca backorders. If the domain name is really something that you want I wouldn't skip the back order. Lots of people think that "no one could possibly want this domain" but they are wrong.

Hope that helps. Also, never rely on a GoDaddy backorder unless the domain is registered at GoDaddy.
posted by FlamingBore at 7:26 PM on March 5, 2009

Thanks for the quick reply, FlamingBore. What's the process you describe which would stop me from securing the domain the day it expires, and why shouldn't I ever rely on GoDaddy for a backorder unless they're the registrar of the domain?
posted by chudmonkey at 7:46 PM on March 5, 2009

Almost all TLDs, both gTLD and ccTLD (which is what .CA is) have some sort of expiry cycle.

For .com the cycle goes something like this:

Active Registration: 365 day increments

Expiry Period: Typically anywhere from 20-45 days depending on the registrar. 45 days is the maximum allowed under the autorenew period allowed by the .com registry.

Redemption Grace Period: 30 day period where the original registrant is able to retrieve and renew a domain name for a signification fee.

Pending Delete: A five day period during which the domain is frozen and cannot be retreived, renewed or otherwise mucked with.

So if you were wanting a .com you'd be looking at a minimum of about 55 days (pretty rare) and a max of just shy of 3 months before the name can "drop".

As I mentioned, I'm not familiar with the .ca deletion cycle, but I'm sure it follows at least a similar pattern.

Finally, regarding GoDaddy's back order service: Back order services (or drop catchers) tupically have *hundreds* of connections to the central registry for the TLD. Snapnames, NameJet and Pool all have such numbers. GoDaddy does not. They are at a distrinct disadvantage for any name that isn't already registered with them.

Further, registrars have exclusive relationships with the above three companies:

Snapnames: Name.com, Domainsite, Register.com, Moniker, MelbourneIT, Doster, etc.
NameJet: Network Solutions, Enom, Tucows, Fabulous.com and most others.
Pool: um... I don't remember who they have. Sorry

Domain names from these registrars are offered up on these services prior to the drop. If you back order the name with the appropriate service you should at least be ensured the option to participate in an auction in the event that there is anyone else interested in the name. If there isn't then you get the domain name by default for the minimum bid. Usually somewhere between $59 and $79 depending on the service ad the registrar.

Now bear in mind that GoDaddy has 29 million domain names, more than the next four largest registrars combined! They run their own expired names auction service at auctions.godaddy.com (formerly tdnam.com). If there's a name from GoDaddy that you want, you're better off looking there versus doing the back order thing. There's been rumors for a long time that any backordered domain goes there. I have no information on that though.

Disclosure: I work for Name.com. And yes, I think it's the best damn domain name registrar out there.
posted by FlamingBore at 8:18 PM on March 5, 2009

Try doing some .CA research on http://www.CIRA.ca (Canadian Internet Registration Authority), they would have the final word on time limits and such regarding .CA domains, as all Canadian registrars must abide by their regulations regarding .CA domains.
posted by Jade Dragon at 5:10 AM on March 6, 2009

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