Webnames 2018 Year in Review and What's Ahead in 2019 | Webnames Blog

Webnames 2018 Year in Review and What’s Ahead in 2019

Year End Message from Cybele Negris, Webnames CEO and Co-Founder

Photo by Jackie Dives for the Globe & Mail

As we wind down 2018 and look forward to a new year full of potential, we want to thank you for choosing Webnames.ca. We are grateful that we get to spend our days supporting amazing individuals, businesses, and initiatives to bring their goals to life online.

2018 marked our 18th year in business, and we continue to love what we do. In large part, this is because of you.

For many of you, we’ve had the privilege of being your service provider for numerous years, and with that comes a familiarity of how to best support your goals, and in many cases, friendship. To our new customers, we thank you for choosing Webnames.ca and for supporting a Canadian business in a sea of providers, and promise to affirm your choice with exceptional service and great products.  

This past year we worked hard to make many of our products and services more powerful, user-friendly, and secure. Your enthusiastic feedback about our new domain management dashboard, enhanced multi-user functionality, TOTP two-factor authentication, improved webmail and DNS upgrades has been incredibly rewarding. And with January only days away, we’re excited to announce a number of new products just on the horizon, including WordPress hosting plans, a powerful new website builder, and domain monitoring just to name a few.

We are honored to begin another year with you as our customer and want you to know that we value your opinions and feedback enormously. To let us know how we are doing, share an idea for a new feature, or tell us about products you want to see in 2019, you can email me directly at president@webnames.ca, or send a note to our team at support@webnames.ca. Your voice helps to shape our business and make us a better service provider, and we thank you for sharing it.

From the entire Webnames team, we wish you happiness and continued success in 2019.

All the best,

Cybele Negris 

 

Webnames 2018 – Our Year in Review

Domains and Domain Management

We wrapped up 2018 by releasing some powerful domain management upgrades. In December we unveiled our improved domain dashboard which features external service detection, one-click access to your other providers, better integration of bulk tools, tag functionality, enhanced filtering and sorting capabilities, and more. You can read all about it here.

2018 also saw the release of a number of features that bolster domain security, including multi-user technical roles and the ability to audit your account history to see the actions of specific users. And for enterprise clients, we launched a premium domain bundle that includes our most sought-after domain features under a single package.

We also incorporated AI-driven suggestions into our domain search results, updated our WHOIS for GDPR compliance, and launched nearly 40 domain extensions including a number of new top-level domains and niche second-level domains.

 

Here is a complete list of what was added to our inventory of almost 550 domains.

TLDs

.aero

.app

.autos

.bank

.bible

.boats     

.charity

.fan

.homes

.icu

.insurance

.llc

.luxe

.page

.realestate

.sport

.yachts

SLDs

.ai           

.bb

.co.il

.co.za

.do

.hk

.id

.ie               

.Jp

.kr

.ly

.my

.net.za

.nz

.org.za        

.ph

.ru

.sg

.tw

.web.za

In January we’re looking forward to the release of a number of new domains, including .dev, .inc and .sport, in addition to a new domain monitoring service.

DNS

We take pride in offering a world-class DNS hosting service, and that means we’re always innovating to make it more powerful, user-friendly and secure. In 2018 we released a number of DNS enhancements, including:

  • One-click automatic DNSSEC zone signing support for Premium DNS domains
  • DNSSEC Delegation Signer (DS) records UI for domains on third-party DNS
  • PTR records with full reverse zone provisioning and Anycast sync
  • SSL DNS validation support for easier, more secure validation
  • DNS zone file export for external backup and redundancy

Hosting, Email, and SSL

Hosting –  In addition to upgrading our web hosting control panel to Plesk Onyx last year, providing our hosting customers significant leap forward in functionality and user-friendliness, we’ve also been hard at work on a number of hosting improvements scheduled for early 2019, including:

  • New WordPress hosting plans that feature the Plesk WordPress Toolkit and BoldGrid Website Builder for WordPress
  • Support for D-Zone, DNSSEC, Python, Cloudflare and Github in our existing plans

Email –  Last spring we released a new webmail platform featuring a clean and intuitive user-interface, improved mobile experience, and a bunch of new productivity features. Robust enough to be used as your primary email client, our new webmail is extremely secure, and a great choice for those who care about data privacy.  We also launched 20GB mailboxes so you can save messages to your heart’s content.

Woman checking her Webnames webmail on laptop

SSL –  Important security changes by Google last year made encryption via SSL a must for every website in 2018. We did a lot of educational work around SSL last year, explaining the differences between the certificate types, the browser warnings on Chrome, and the implications of “Not Secure” websites. We also implemented DNS-based SSL validation which is both more secure and reliable than WHOIS/email validation, as well as SSL auto-installation across all Plesk servers.

Security

Security underpins everything we do, and is always a top priority. In addition to the security enhancements threaded through each of the above sections, we also added Google Authenticator TOTP two-factor as an additional layer of protection above our preexisting SMS option.

Referral Program

We’re thrilled when happy customers refer people to Webnames.ca, so in 2018 we decided to give customers, and their friends, a little something back with our new Referral Program. Every Webnames account now contains a unique referral code that can be shared to give friends $10.00 off their first purchase, with a $10.00 account credit earned by you when new customers apply your code to make a purchase.

Charitable Initiatives, Sponsorships, and Community Impact  

In 2018 Team Webnames raised $7451 for the Canadian Cancer Society in our annual Relay for Life fundraiser, besting our 2017 total by more than $500. 2018 marked year three in our 5-year initiative to raise $25,000 for a new cancer prevention centre in British Columbia Lower Mainland, and we are well on our way having now raised over 20k.

We were also delighted to support a variety of amazing initiatives, organizations and technology events with donations and sponsorships last year. It was an honour to be the inaugural corporate partner for Science World’s Future Science Leader initiative, and challenge other local tech businesses to do the same. We also were delighted to be able to sponsor events like the Forum for Women Entrepreneurs E-Series Gala, the O2D Entrepreneurship Conference, the Innovate BC – New Ventures Competition, Global Game Jam, Science World Girls in STEAM Symposium, Small Business BC Holiday Mixer, among others making a positive impact in our community.

2018 also marked our second year as a Climate Smart certified business. As we look forward to recertifying in the coming months, we’re hoping to see further incremental reductions to our CO2 emissions.

climatesmart logo | webnames is a climatesmart business

And lastly, we want to acknowledge the great work being done by our senior leadership in the broader business, entrepreneurship and tech communities.

John Demco, Webnames.ca’s co-founder and founder of the .CA country code for Canada, continues to serve as a Board Advisor to CIRA, the member-based not-for-profit organization that manages the .CA namespace. In 2018 John was recognized by CANARIE at their 25th anniversary celebration and at the Dean of Science’s reception during the University of Alberta Alumni Weekend.

 Over the course of 2018 our CEO Cybele Negris was appointed by the BC government to the three-member Small Business Task Force, served as a Vice Chair of British Columbia’s Small Business Roundtable, Chair’s Council to Science World, Regional Ambassador for Women Get on Board and on the board of the Royal Canadian Mint. She volunteered time to speak at numerous events including Women’s Executive Network, BC Chamber Of Commerce, Forum for Women Entrepreneurs, SheBiz 2018, Science World’s inaugural Girls in STEAM Symposium, among others, and was featured in the Globe and Mail, BIV and as one of BC Business’s most influential women in STEM.  

As we look ahead to great things in 2019, we want to extend our sincerest thanks to all of our customers and friends. In what’s become an increasingly competitive space, we will continue to prioritize exceptional customer service, build innovative and reliable products, and strive for excellence in all that we do. Thank you for sharing our journey.

Sincerely, Team Webnames

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