You may be thinking about transferring your domain name to another registrar because the renewal costs at your current registrar are too high or you simply don’t like the quality of service that you receive there.
That’s all right. In fact, it happens all the time.
In the early days of the web, the domain name regulator ICANN introduced domain transfers so that website owners like you and me could have a choice of service provider—and not be tied to one domain name registrar forever.
With a little reading and some patience, you too can transfer your domain name from one registrar to another, even if you’re not a very technical person and you’ve never touched domain name settings before.
But if you already have email inboxes configured for your domain name and you’re actively using it, should you be worried?
Read on to find out.
Will Transferring My Domain Name Affect My Email?
Will you lose your emails when you transfer your domain to another registrar?
Well, the answer to this question comes down to how you set things up at the old and the new registrar.
But, generally, you shouldn’t.
When you transfer your domain name to another registrar, you’re simply changing the organization that holds that domain name for you (and you renew it with).
The DNS records for this domain name, meaning the settings that determine which web hosting account and email service it points to, remain unchanged.
It’s a lot like changing your mobile carrier—but keeping your number and phone the same.
As long as your domain name’s MX records, the part of the DNS records that point to your mail service provider, stay the same, then transferring your domain name to another registrar won’t affect them.
This means that your email address and the password you use to access it won’t change, and the email messages in your inbox won’t get deleted.
If you not only transfer your domain name to another registrar for billing purposes but change the DNS records so that they point to another web hosting account and/or email platform, your emails may be affected.
As a matter of fact, you may need to:
- Back up your old emails
- Recreate your email inboxes with your new provider
- Import the backup to restore your email messages, contact list, and calendar events
So here’s how this goes.
Exporting and Importing Your Emails
What if you are switching the hosting along with transferring the domain name?
If you have connected your domain with an email system at your previous registrar, and you wish to safely transfer your backlog of emails to a new registrar’s system, then there are a few ways of going about this.
If you have a hosting account on a Linux server with cPanel installed and you switch to another hosting account that has them too, you can export your emails from one of the old cPanel email applications and import them into the new one.
But if you want to switch from a branded email service provided to you by your current domain registrar to another branded service, you’ll need to contact the support teams of both and ask if this is even possible.
Frequently Asked Questions
When I Transfer a Domain Name, What Changes And What Doesn’t?
When you transfer a domain name from one registrar to another, you’re only changing the service provider that holds that domain name and that you renew it with.
Your hosting and your email stay as they are. As long as, that is, you don’t make any changes to your domain name’s DNS records before or after the transfer. (If you want your hosting and email to stay where they are, you shouldn’t.)
Does Transferring a Domain From Another Registrar Affect SEO?
No, transferring your domain name from one registrar to another shouldn’t have a negative impact on the SEO of your website and its overall rankings in the Google SERPs.
But if you also change the hosting account, then your website’s SEO may be affected. Moving your site to a faster hosting package with 99.9% uptime may give it a small ranking boost.
Conversely, moving your site to a hosting package with poor performance with downtime and crawl errors may affect your site’s Google rankings negatively. So when you’re making the switch, choose carefully.
How Do I Transfer a Domain Name Without Losing Emails?
Well, you just need to make sure that you’re transferring the domain name but not changing its DNS records (and MX records, specifically) in any way.
Also, if you’re subscribed to the email service of an email service provider, you need to make sure that your subscription is active and that you renew it when the time comes.
(The fact that your domain name’s MX records are pointed to an email service doesn’t mean you shouldn’t renew it.)