Choosing Domain Name Registrars
Choosing a good domain name registrar is as good as selecting the best domain name for your business website. This article on how to choose a domain name registrar highlights some salient factors you need to consider when choosing a registrar for your blog or website domain. It is important you choose carefully; there are numbers of self-appraised reviews by series of domain name registrars on the internet. I believe this information will go a long way to help making the best decision on the domain name registrar to choose. Highlighted below are the major factors worth being noticed to choose the best domain registrar:
Best Domain Registrar Criteria
- ICANN accreditation
- Customer support & service
- Domain control dashboard (interface)
- Limit of control on the domain name registered
- Value added services
- Users opinions and reviews (what genuine people are saying)
- Multiple years registration facility
- Automatic domain renewal service and expiration notice
- My recommended domain registrar
Choose ICANN accredited domain name registrar
One of the great mistakes you can make is to neglect this factor while satisfied with other such as price and choose a domain name registrar that is not accredited by ICANN. International Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is a non-profit corporation established in 1998 and vested with the power to manage, supervise, monitor and oversee domain name registration services.
Being an accredited domain name registrar is an indication that the registrar has financial back up and full capacity to undertake the task. It is the best practice to check the accreditation status of a registrar before you settle for it. There are some affiliate domain name registrars, otherwise known as resellers. If you are going for a reseller domain name registrar, make sure it is affiliated to an accredited registrar.
To ascertain that a registrar is accredited, check its business name on the list of ICANN accredited domain name registrars.
Pricing- Choosing a cheap domain name registrar
Price is an important selection criterion in choosing domain name registrars for your chosen business domain. You can agree with me! Why will you pay higher for a service if you can get the same value at a cheaper rate. It is however, important to understand the difference between low-priced and cheap domain name registration. Cheap domain name registrar implies that the registrar provides high value domain service for comparatively lesser price to other registrars who offer the same service at higher price. Some of the so-called low-priced domain name registrars aren’t really cheap because of the extra cost to offset the lacking value. It is quite important to know when you are paying a registrar for images or brands and when you are paying for value.
Many a time we pay for brands of products and services owners and not really the values their product offer. Domain name service, registration and registrar are no exception
Generally speaking, look for high quality domain name registrar that offer major TLDs such as .COM, .NET, .ORG between US$7 and US$15 per year. Any domain name registrar that offer .COM domain name for more than US$15 is not but selling brand not value” Network solution and register.com domain registration for instance, cost around US35$ and US38$ respectively.
Support- Choose a domain name registrar with quality customer support service
How fair is the registrar support/customer care. Even though the customer care service of a domain name registrar (not only domain registration service provider anyway) is difficult to quantify and assessed especially if you’ve not had deal with the registrar in the past, a measure can be made through the following observation:
- Available mode of contacting the registrars’ support team: Can you contact the registrars through life chat, contact form on their official website, email and/or phone? Do they have all these options to spread the traffic of their customers’ quarries or only email option is available. The more affirmation you have for the aforementioned questions, the better the domain name registrar.
- For how long a day are they available? How many days a week? Are they available for customers 24/7. All these worth questioned before you choose a registrar for your domain name.
- How quick to quarries their responses are? With this you know how long you need to wait in case of outburst of problems regarding your domain names
Domain control dashboard/interface
Domain name interface of the registrar should make domain name management easier. This is especially important if you run portfolio of several domain names. Probably you engage in virtual estate deal, domain name packing, resale and flipping, the registrar dashboard needs to allow management of multiple domain names in one click without working on the domains one after the other. Also very crucial aside multiple domain management facility is provision of bulk purchase by the registrar.
Limit of control on the domain registered
Check with the registrar; is the domain you registered under your identity or your company name. This is a security measure you need to watch. It doesn’t stop there! If the domain is registered with you as full owner or licensee, do you have full control to manage the domain names? What are the technical features that the registrar allows in the dashboard. The registrar domain interface should allow you to manage domain features such as:
- domain locking and unlocking
- accessing your domain auth code. This is very important. It is the power key of your domain names
- editing domain name server (DNS) as well as advanced DNS configuration
If you have control over all these through the domain interface, you ‘ll probably have no problem in pointing your domain to your web host, transfer or sell the domain names.
Just make sure the domain name registrar interface allows you full control over the domain in your portfolio without a need to contact the registrar.
Value added services: Choose a domain name registrar that offer free extra you need
You might need some extra services with your domain name. Plan what you need ahead so you don’t have to pay the registrar additional fee for such domain services should you eventually need the services that are not provided free by the registrar. Below are some of the extra you may consider upfront:
- private domain registration to have your contact detail hidden in the WHOIS database.
- email forwarding – This allows you to forward domain email address to another. e.g forwarding “email@example.com” to another email “firstname.lastname@example.org”.
- URL forwarding – used when you intend to drive the domain name traffic to another domain; pack the domain name using URL forwarding with domain packing company as an alternative to DNS forwarding.
- domain packing: You want to pack your domain with registrar, check if they offer this for free
Users’ opinions and reviews
Check what people and real customers are saying about the registrar. You don’t necessarily take a webmaster review as it is but the readers’ reactions to the review. Learn what genuine domain owners’ experience from their registrars. What registered domain names owners say have strong weight in accessing what the registrars are up to in terms of quality service, value for money, user-friendly interface which might not be quantified and ascertained at sight.
Multiple years registration facility
This is one thing I often say about registering a domain name for your blog or business website; Did I mention you register for more than a year, if possible 5-10 years. 10 years seems to be the maximum year for registration. Some domain name registrars, like Moniker, Namecheap, Godaddy allow registration for up to 10 years. Register for multiple years at a time unless
- you want resell the domain name or flip website
- you want to use the domain name for spamming (which I don’t t expect of you) or want to appear spamming to search engines and human.
- you want to use the domain name for affiliate marketing (promoting a product), email marketing, landing page or opt-in page.
- you want to test the profitability of a niche. A better approach to this is to use sub-domain of a website domain you control. A website on sub domain is considered by search engine as an independent website.
Automatic domain renewal service and expiration notice
Does the registrar give expiration notice and provide automatic renewal service? This is very vital most especially if you have hundreds of domain names in your control. Most domain name registrars though, give domain name expiration notice, quite numbers of them don’t provide automatic renewal.
Automatic domain renewal ensures you don’t lose your domain name upon expiration. If your domain name registrar offers automatic renewal, I advise that:
- you make your payment methods up-to-date to smooth the payment process for the domain renewal as at when due.
- you have excel sheet indicating domain names, registration and expiration date and well placed within the reach of your sight. Most domain registrar provides even a better alternative to this in the dashboard so that all information regarding every domain be viewed at a glance.
My recommended domain name registrar
Yes I know! You don’t want to stress yourself scouting around internet for the best domain name registrars to choose for your online business and marketing website, I got you covered with my carefully selected and recommended registrars: Namecheap and Godaddy.
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