Yellow Rose DesignsIt can finally be revealed! Welcome to the new One of the first things I learned in business classes (New Quest, an in-depth program taught by entrepreneurs and business owners) is that branding is everything. I have to agree. Since I first ventured into the world of business ownership almost 2 decades ago, my own search for my brand identity has been a roller coaster ride of good, bad and ugly. Over the years I hit on many different names, brands, logos and slogans – many of them really great, but simply not my brand. They didn’t identify anything about my personal brand, something I’ve discovered is very important to me.

About 10 years ago, I decided on “Yellow Rose”. It fit with my Texas heritage, it has a deep historical meaning, and the name evokes a bright cheerfulness that I want associated with my personal brand and my company brand. The dilemma? Yellow Rose . . . what? I started with “Yellow Rose Gallery & Studio”, “Yellow Rose Gallery”, paused briefly on “Yellow Rose Gifts” (I still own that dot com, and I’ll explain in a minute why) before deciding “Yellow Rose Designs”, though somewhat generic, is the best fit for my company. In a blog interview I did explaining the importance of having designs in the name, I explained it like this:

“Almost anything involving “design” interests me. Jewelry design, graphics design, web site design, application and computer program design (object oriented programming is a form of design too!), designs from the Arts and Crafts movement, art design, architectural design, engineering design… Wikipedia defines “engineering design” as “a formulation of a plan or scheme to assist an engineer in creating a product.” So the word encompasses several of my passions all at once.”

With URL already taken, I snapped up the domain that has been my company’s “home base” for several years, However, I know that my chosen name is very generic, making the “dot com” that much more important to my brand. So started the waiting game.

First, I discovered whoever owned it, wasn’t actually using it. That can be good and bad. Either the person intended to use it and never did, or decided it was a good name to try and sell at a high price. And with domain registrars starting to auto-renew for their clients, waiting for a domain name to “drop” is even more difficult.

The best way to get a website name that’s already owned by someone isn’t to continually visit that site to see if it’s in use. (In fact, this can work against you if a “squatter” has the domain you want. Once they discover through tracking that someone is interested, they either hold onto it that much longer, or raise the bidding price if they decide to put it up for auction.) You can check availability – including when the domain is likely to begin to expire/drop – by doing a simple “whois” lookup on, or you can visit a site such as, and visit their Research and Screenshot history to give you a clue whether the site you want is currently in use.

What you’re looking for when viewing the “whois” of a website name is the “Expires on” date. This is the date to keep an eye on. When I wanted the domain, I found this helpful article that explains why the expiration date is an important milestone, but not when the actual domain may “drop”: As the article explains, it can take up to 75 days from the expiration date for a previously owned name to become available again . . . and with a truly desirable name, the game is on as auction sites and backorder services try to beat each other to “the drop.” Actually, days before it expired, the owner of sent an email to one of my other “yellowrose” names, offering to sell it to me – for a price. Since that wasn’t my desired dot com site name, I decided to sit back and wait for that one. I’m glad I did. I waited for “the drop”, used SnapNames as my preferred service and landed the domain!

Things worked out much differently for For several years, I watched … and waited. It expired in October, so that month, I stalked the whois, waiting for a sign. Up until the expiration date – and a few days after – everything looked good. No renewal had been placed. Then, about 5 days after the set expiration, I thought my waiting game would begin again – the expiration changed from October 7, 2012 to October 7, 2013. I kept watching.

During the first week of November, I saw something new on the whois. “This domain is available to be purchased using GoDaddy auctions.” It went from a “renewed” status (remember that auto-renewal I mentioned?) to “expiring.” The original owner hadn’t renewed! The auction was set to end on November 11 at around noon my time (just my luck! the very day I would be at one of my biggest holiday shows of the year!). I placed my bid a few nights before the 11th, then I started the waiting game again. With wi-fi available at the event, I sat at my table and watched the auction like a hawk. No one else bid against me. The domain was mine! Almost . . . Due to the way expiring domains work, the original owner still had one week to decide to renew. Whether GoDaddy sent them a final notice during that week, I have no way of knowing. I only know my waiting game would finally end within the week. Since you’re reading this on, you can already guess the outcome. I now own the “dot com” I had waited so patiently for.

This is a new era for my company, Yellow Rose Designs. Our branding is only going to grow stronger. I’m so excited to share this incredible journey with our friends, fans and customers.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Join us!

Join me on Twitter

Follow Me on Pinterest

Twitter outputted an error: