0

Choosing A Domain Registrar

Written By: Dan Grossman

Since Network Solutions lost its monopoly over the domain name
registration business, a multitude of competing registrars and
thousands of resellers have popped up. Now a domain buyer may
choose between these various sites at various rates for basically
the same service.

So why does it matter where you buy your domain names?

No two registrars are the same. They vary in price, services
offered, ease of use, management system, etc. This is why which
registrar to go with is an important decision. If you register
your new domain name at one, and find you have overpaid compared
to other registrars or you’re not happy with the service, you
either have to let the domain drop when the registration expires
or pay to register it again in order to transfer it to another
registrar.

The following are the main factors to consider when choosing
a registrar when buying a domain. Whether you are buying a new
domain or thinking of transfering an existing domain to a
different one, consider these before choosing:

1. PRICE

The price you pay for your standard .com, .net or .org domain
can vary greatly between registrars. While there are “free”
domain name services available, many of them either buy the
domain themselves and only permit you “use” of the name, or
force you to place large frames full of advertisements on your
site in exchange for the domain name.

The cheapest you can expect to pay for a domain name would be
between $12 and $15. At others you may expect to pay from $20 to
$35 a year for the same domain.

Remember that price is not the only factor. When comparing
prices, take into account the other services offered by the
registrar, their customer support, testimonies, etc.

2. SERVICES

Does the registrar you are looking at offer more than just
registration? Many will offer additional services with the
registration of your domain which may make up for additional
cost in price.

For example, Register.com offers site building tools, a domain
redirection services and email services for free with the
registration of a domain. If these services are useful to you,
they may make up for the $35 registration fee.

If you don’t need any services, then Register.com may not be
the registrar of choice for you, as there are many other good
registrars that charge much less than $35 for a single domain.

3. MANAGEMENT

Another important factor to consider when choosing a registrar
is their method of domain management. In other words, once you
have registered the domain, how do you manage the information
associated with it? You may want to change contact information or
nameservers in the future.

Most registrars offer a control panel type interface for managing
your domains. This allows you to simply log in on the web and
change the information you want changed.

Others, however, have much more complicated systems. Network
Solutions was known for its inefficient and complicated system of
making simple changes. If, for example, you switched to a new
e-mail address, you might have had to fax in multiple forms of
identification in order to change simple information related to
your domain.

4. SUPPORT

When you need to know how to do something or you’re having a
problem with your domain, customer support is important. Smaller
sites reselling domain registration may not be able to provide
the same level of support one of the main registrars could. Check
out the site’s help section for its depth and check how easy it
is to find an email address or form to fill out for help.

Consider these factors when choosing where to register your
domain name to come up with the registrar offering the perfect
combination of price, service, management and support for you.

About the Author

Dan Grossman runs http://www.websitegoodies.com where you can
find over 250 hand-picked resources, articles, and tools! Dan
also publishes the free weekly “WebDevPortal” newsletter for
website owners! Subscribe today and get articles like this every
week: mailto:subscribe@webdevportal.com?subject=article-subscribe

Previous post:

Next post: