What is happening?
The UK Government has committed to leaving the European Union by 31st October 2019, regardless of whether a deal is agreed or not. There is still some uncertainty regarding how this will affect .eu domain holders, but it is prudent at this point to prepare for the worst.
When Brexit happens then it is possible that UK / Gibraltar citizens will lose their .eu domains. So, with just over two months before the deadline, it is important to consider what you need to do.
What do I do next?
The first step should be to identify a suitable alternative domain that can be used instead of the existing .eu domain. The easiest way to do this is to pop your domain name into our Domain Search on our website as this will check to see what other common extensions, such as .co.uk, .uk or .com, your name is available in.
Our search will even display some suggestions for you if your preferred suffix is already registered.
Further advice on choosing a suitable domain is available on our website
I have a website using Web Hosting on my .eu domain
Before doing anything, it is important to consider the potential impact to your search engine rankings. Google may well know about your current website at your .eu domain but they won't know about any new domain you start using.
Moving a website is challenging and if you've had your website for a while then you'll be listed in Google, and will want to make sure you tell Google what changes you are making.
There are lots of articles online that you can follow to try and help you. Google have published some guides that may be useful to you which are located here
After registering your alternative domain, you will need to ensure that it has an active Web Hosting package that supports the features and resources that you need.
In order to aid the transition process, we will provide the package free of charge on the new domain for a period of one month. Once you have selected a suitable package please contact our Sales team on 0345 363 3632 who will assist you in adding it to the new domain.
I am using WordPress on my existing website
If you are currently using WordPress then we recommend following the migration instructions provided by Wordpress here
If you have a web developer who originally created the website for you, then it may be best to get them involved in this process.
I am not using WordPress on my existing website
If your website is not using WordPress then the steps detailed below will be relevant for you. We recommend having a read through them first so that you know what is involved, and if you feel uncertain with doing any of this then it will be best to involve a web developer in the process instead.
Step One - Download Files
The first step is to connect to the current webspace with an FTP client, and download the content to your own computer. You can use any FTP client for this, but popular ones are FileZilla, Cyberduck, or SmartFTP.
You will need to enter into the client your FTP host, FTP username and FTP password. Once you have entered them in and connected, you should see two windows that appear within the FTP client. One will display all of the files that form the website, and the other will display the folders on your computer. You will need to drag and drop the website files to a location on your computer where you can easily access them.
Step Two - Download the Database
If your website does not have a database then you can skip this step, but if you are using a Content Management System (such as Joomla or Drupal) then there will be a database that needs to be downloaded as well.
This can be acquired from whoever hosts the website, and if that is us then this guide may be of assistance to you.
Note that if you have Windows Hosting with us, then you will need to obtain your database here
Step Three - Migrate the website content
Now that you have obtained backups of the website content, the next step is to upload it to the Hosting package on the new domain. This is again done using an FTP client, by connecting to the new domain and transferring the website files from the window that displays your computer's files to the window that displays your website's files.
Step Four - Create a new database and import content
If your website does not have a database then you can skip this step, but if a database is involved then you will need to ensure that you create one in your names.co.uk Control Panel.
You will then need to import the backup file you downloaded in Step Two by following the same process that you did then, but choosing the "Import" option instead of "Export".
Finally, you will need to identify the file that contains your database connection details and update it with the new database details. This file is typically called something like "wp-config.php", "configuration.php" or "db.php".
Step Five - Forward old .eu domain to new domain
Now that your website is up and running on your new domain, you may want to forward your .eu domain to the new one. This will ensure that any visitors that load the .eu domain will automatically be taken to the new one (but only for as long as the .eu domain is still active).
This can be done by following the instructions located here
Over the course of the next few months, leading up to the end of October, you should ensure that everyone knows the new domain and is using that instead. If you have any business cards or marketing material that feature the old domain then they will all need to be updated to the new one.
Have a think about anywhere your .eu domain may be listed, and spend some time updating those references, in order to ensure you are not caught short in the event that you lose the domain.
Finally, if you have any queries or concerns about anything, please don't hesitate to get in touch with us.