Domain names are very important for a number of reasons, the most important being: you cant have a website without a domain name..
Over the last few weeks I have had a number of conversations with clients, friends and potential customers who didnt know who controlled their domain name.
If you registered www.yourwebsite.co.uk years ago with the person that created your website, chances are they have control of it, you should be in control of everything to do with your website not an agency or a guy from the pub.
If you do not have a direct login to the control panel for your domain name then I advise you to sort it out sooner rather than later.
Firstly what you need is an account with a registra there are hundreds out there, i use 123reg to purchase my domains, for no other reason than the good service.
Second you need to contact the person in control of your domain and ask them to initiate a transfer, this is done using an IPS TAG, like a bank sort code. You can get your IPS Tag from your registra.
Then your registra will be able to take control of the domain and add it to your account, they usually charge a fee for this which is about £10.
Please bear in mind that when moving a domain from one account to another, you also need to copy any custom settings such as email records and name servers, to ensure that your website or email service doesnt go down.
If you are not confident in doing this then get someone who knows what they are doing to help, but the most important thing is to make sure it is transferred into an account that you manage.
If you do not control your own domains and the person that does goes out of business or is on holiday when you need them then it could take weeks to gain access to it, and worse case scenario is that your website is down for weeks, losing you business.
Another big benefit of being in control is the cost, i recently heard a client of mine was paying £45 per year to renew their domain name though a third party, if they were in control of it, it could cost them around £7 for 2 years….