“Do what you do, do well,” goes a song lyric I often have stuck in my mind. For entrepreneurs, walking their walk usually entails championing their startups, coming up with great ideas, solving problems, and remembering to renew domains. Uh, that last item, not so much. Good thing Dominder has founders’ backs.
Dominder is a control panel for websites. What is does well is help entrepreneurs manage websites, both their own and those of clients. This services monitors the status of websites, issues registration renewal reminders and other important notifications, checks for malware and black listing, stores notes, backs up financial information, and more. Basically, Dominder domain tools help free website owners from worrying about routine (but essential) upkeep so they can focus on more pressing business concerns.
Founder Ivan Alexandrovich of Belarus is determined to spare others from experiencing the same pain he did when he lost websites, not to mention the time and money he put into them. Here he shares more about his company that is quickly gaining users and attention:
How did you come up with the idea for Dominder?
Previously, I worked as an internet marketing and SEO expert, and I had a large number of sites registered in different registrars. It was difficult to keep track of them, and I forgot to extend several domains. As a result, I lost sites, and of course the effort and money that had been already spent. The problem needed to be solved. So the idea of creating Dominder was born.
What first attracted you to startup entrepreneurship?
7 years ago, when I came online and realized that I could make money here, I started freelancing and creating websites for other people. Then I started to develop websites for myself, but these were a kind of small ones. As the time passed, I decided to create something serious, permanent, and designed for millions of users.
Remember the early days starting up? Maybe you can share one anecdote that describes the struggle you went through?
In the beginning it seemed that everything would be very easy and that the project would bring success. But from the very first day, I realized that not only I but all our team would have to work very hard. The user base wouldn’t rise magically by a thousand a day.
How do you handle frustration? When/how was the last time you dealt with frustration?
From time to time we encounter a disappointment, especially when the reality doesn’t follow our expectations. But it motivates us and makes us work harder. Whenever the shadow of failure looms, you begin to work more.
What’s the startup culture like in Belarus?
Belarus has a lot of talented developers who worked on various well-known projects (for example, our developer previously worked on Mashable.com), but there is no experience in managing the world’s major projects, in attracting millions of users. Therefore, there aren’t so many projects that were made by exclusively Belarusians and that achieved worldwide recognition. I can recall only quoteroller.com.
When do your best ideas come to you?
Good ideas blow in my mind at any time, no matter what I do. But most of them come to me when I’m having a hot bath and thinking about nothing.
How do you picture Dominder in 5 years?
I strongly believe that Dominder is useful for any site owner. Each site requires time to be spent on it and some records to be made, and Dominder can do all of this. The main point is to attract new users and maintain a high quality of service. I am sure that by the end of 2013 over one million domains will be added in our service, and the number of users will exceed 100,000. And this is due to our modest capabilities. If invested… we can significantly exceed this level.
In 5 years, we will serve 10 million domains and become a global company. My team and I will try to do our best.
Who or what inspires YOU?
I think that the success stories of others inspires me best of all.
How’d you fund this venture?
The project is entirely self-funded. A year ago I sold one of my sites, and the money was invested in Dominder. I devoted myself entirely to this project, and I will fight for it until I win.
What sets Dominder apart from the competition?
Dominder is easy to use by not only experts, but also ordinary users, due to a simple and convenient interface. Our project has all the basic features you need to manage the site. This reduces the cost of maintenance. Earlier, to check out the site for accessibility and security, you had to use two different services and pay twice. Our user pays only once and immediately gains access to 6 useful functions (site monitoring, security check, reminders, finances, notes and Whois). We are more functional, comfortable, and cheaper than our competitors.
One can say that a successful startup should have only one useful function, but in this case, it is not true. And thousands of our registered users prove this.
Got any great bootstrapping tips for the lean startups out there?
Our startup is less than 2 months old, so it is difficult to give any advice. I can only advise to believe in your project. Work hard and do not lose heart if you have any problems. Problems will arise anyway.
What’s your largest satisfaction in business life?
Selling my last project for a good amount of money was my first major success. This allowed me to create Dominder.
In the off chance that you have any free time, what do you do with it?
Now all my free time is spent on reading blogs, articles, and other popular sites. Unfortunately, the budget of this project is limited, so I have to do a lot of work myself, to plunge into different spheres of Internet business. But if possible, I would be away from the computer for just a few days. I have not had a holiday for several years already.
Do you consider yourself a successful entrepreneur right now? If not, what’s it gonna take to make you feel successful?
No, I do not feel myself successful at the moment. Yes, I have something that my peers don’t, but there are other entrepreneurs who have achieved significant success at a younger age.
I’ve made mistakes on my way. Fortunately, I profit by my own mistakes and with every step I get closer to my goal. And my goal is to create a successful project used by millions of users.
Where can our readers get a hold of you?
Do what you do, do well, Internet stars. Don’t let your hard work unravel because of silly oversight of expiration dates or inattention to accounting details. Check out Dominder at Dominder.com, and keep business humming along.