Feb 2, 2023 - by Staff Writer

2023 Will Be An Exciting – And Challenging – Year for Domain Name Professionals

An in-depth interview with Nicole DelleDonne, Senior Director Sales, GoDaddy Corporate Domains (GCD)

As a veteran domain name professional, what do you predict for 2023? Given the economic headwinds that we’re moving into, domain professionals are going to be asked to do even more with less. Perhaps they will be taking on additional responsibilities outside of domain management. Or they will have fewer resources which means they’ll have to cut back either on headcount, budget, or both. Over the last few years, everyone has mainly focused on getting through the COVID-19 pandemic. However, now that the pandemic is less of an issue, companies are going to be looking to make more informed decisions and the most of what they have.

What domain-related trends are you seeing take shape recently? Interest in Web3 identities (aka blockchain domains) continues to be an area of concern for corporate domain name professionals. As with all new and emerging spaces there is the potential for brand abuse to occur. Brand owners have recognized that generally these new technologies do not currently offer reliable or robust dispute mechanisms. Consequently, some feel that defensive registrations provide the best brand protection strategy, and many have taken that approach.

What are the most exciting events conferences you’re looking forward to attending virtually or in-person this year and why?

We are incredibly excited about attending INTA’s Annual Meeting in Singapore, May 16-20 as a Platinum Sponsor. After several years of the pandemic, we are enthusiastically looking forward to face-to-face meetings. INTA is the premier event for global brand professionals, and we look forward to meeting with our customers and prospects from several continents there. Appearing at INTA reinforces GCD’s commitment to providing enterprise-level domain management services to brand professionals.

In addition to INTA, we are also looking forward to attending and speaking at the WIPR Summit in Chicago, March 16-17.

GCD also attends ICANN meetings throughout the year and reports out on each via post-meeting recap webinars. Many domain name industry professionals – including us at GCD – are looking forward to getting more clarity, and hopefully a timeline on the next round of generic top-level domains). GCD will communicate any major ICANN updates to clients and our greater community at large.

How will GCD be serving its clients differently this year to navigate the current market conditions? We always want to help companies maximize the value of their domain portfolios. As the economic downturn unfolds, I anticipate our clients will be even more interested in understanding which domain names can be allowed to lapse and where they can pare back their portfolios to achieve cost savings. GCD’s innovative Brandsight technology platform provides a tremendous amount of domain name and website data which will help identify domain names that could potentially be allowed to lapse.

How does GCD stay on top of its clients’ needs? Along with regular client engagement and networking opportunities, such as hosted roundtables, we have a GCD customer advisory board that meets three times per year. These meetings provide an opportunity for us to hear from clients and gather feedback on which enhancements, functionality, and capabilities they would like added to Brandsight. We look forward to these meetings and use the feedback to define our future development roadmap.

What do you think companies need to focus on for domain name management in 2023? In addition to following developments at ICANN, doing more with less, and seeking greater value from their registrars, companies always need to be focused on securing their domain names. That means registry locking names, leveraging single sign-on (SSO), monitoring for unauthorized changes to high-value names, and generally being more aware of how all of the domains in their portfolios are being used. Security also means selecting domain management providers who are committed to ensuring the security of their platforms by conducting periodic penetration testing, and training against social engineering attacks.

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