Every website on the Internet requires a domain name to act as an address or URL so people can visit it. In order to get your own domain name and launch a site, you need to search for an available one and make an account with a domain registrar. If you have already purchased a domain name in the past, you may want to switch it to a different registrar to receive additional security or other benefits.
Choosing a domain registrar can present a host of problems if you are unfamiliar with all the options available. Which one will suit your needs, budget, and goals the best?
In the end, you need to make a value judgment based on benefits versus cost analysis. While some domain registrars cost less than others, they might not have all the features you want. In order for you to make an informed decision, we have gathered together the top 10 domain registrars active in 2019.
This well-known domain registrar is owned by the Endurance International Group and launched way back in the year 2000.
Since the early days, it has expanded to offer more than domain registration. You can also find professional web hosting, design services, marketing assistance, professional email, and included SSL certificate security. The hosting packages are either shared, VPS, or specifically designed for the most popular CMS in the world: WordPress.
If you choose to host your website with Domain.com, you do receive one free domain registration. If you post your site elsewhere, you can still register a .com domain for $9.99 annually.
The flexibility of the web hosting packages allows you to find the best option for your particular needs. Of course, you may need different features if you are creating a personal page or a larger business site. This domain registrar and hosting provider gives you unlimited space, a free SSL, and included tools to help you market your website effectively.
Domain.com does not provide free WHOIS privacy protection, however. Like most other registration companies, they do charge an extra fee of $8.99 per year. Most people opt for this extra feature to help keep their personal information secure.
One of the oldest domain registrars and hosting companies, GoDaddy was founded in 1997 by Bob Parsons in Arizona. In those early years, it operated under the name Jomax Technologies but adopted the GoDaddy moniker rather quickly.
It is a name that you may have seen on television commercials and many ads online. Their longevity and exceptional marketing have made them one of the most popular host and URL companies around. They currently have user base over 17 million people.
GoDaddy is a full-service website company. They do offer ordinary domain registration services that start at $.99 for a .com name for one year but go up to $14.99 for every additional year after that. As most people intend to keep their website for longer than a year, this does make them one of the more expensive options on this list.
In order to get WHOIS privacy protection, you will need to pay an extra $7.99 annually. This is the cost for a personal website URL. If you have a business domain name, it will cost $14.99. Again, this is one of the more expensive options.
Besides registration of domain names, they also offer website hosting, security options, Internet marketing assistance, Microsoft-powered email hosting, and more. They do offer multiple types of customer service through website chat and phone service.
ICANN accreditation exists for the NameCheap domain registrar. They have been in business the year 2000 when Richard Kirkendall founded it in Arizona. In the past 19 years, they have attracted more than 3 million users who have registered more than 7 million website addresses in total.
NameCheap received accolades from LifeHacker in 2010 and 2012. It received the "Best Domain Name Registrar" and "Most Popular Domain Name Registrar" respectively.
Like most of the other companies on this list, NameCheap offers more than domain registration. You can also get a hosting package on a shared server, VPS, as a reseller, or specifically for WordPress. Many of these packages include private email hosting although you can also purchase that separately.
Any available .com domain name will cost $8.88 (renew $12.98).
If you desire, you can get less popular domain suffixes like .me, .co, .online, and .life for lower prices. WHOIS protection is free for the first year and costs only $2.88 after that. This makes for one of the least expensive privacy protection services of any domain registrar on this list.
Launched in Utah in 2003 as part of the Endurance International Group (EIG), BlueHost has grown considerably to become one of the most well-known and far-reaching website hosting services in the world. An estimated 2 million websites are currently hosted through their servers although it can be quite difficult to get exact figures because they protect their customers' information quite well.
BlueHost is the hosting company of choice named by WordPress.org. Specifically designed WordPress hosting is one of their most popular offers. However, you can also acquire shared, VPS, dedicated, and reseller hosting packages.
When it comes to domain registration, you get an excellent deal if you also host with this company. One URL is completely free for the first year. Any other domain names you register will cost $11.99 annually. This is also the price at the current time for additional years in association with your web hosting package.
Unlike other companies that charge annually for WHOIS privacy protection, BlueHost offers a $.99 monthly plan.
Many users appreciate the multiple options when it comes to customer support with BlueHost. They offer an email-based ticket system, phone access, and full time live chat. You can also find many answers to your questions in their comprehensive FAQ and knowledge base pages.
Although HostGator began in Texas in 2002, it was purchased by Endurance International Group (EIT) in 2012 and moved mostly to Utah. This is the same company that operates BlueHost. It currently boasts more than 9 million domains registered through its service.
Most of the domain registrations done with this company are aligned with web hosting packages. Like the other companies listed in this Top 10 list, they offer shared hosting, VPS, dedicated, cloud, and reseller packages. They also have ones set up specifically for the WordPress CMS.
The cloud-based WordPress hosting is considered some of the most reliable, fastest, and most affordable in the industry. We recommended ourselves.
When it comes to registering a domain name, you can do so separate from their hosting for $12.95 annually (renews $17.99). If you get there smallest Hatchling Cloud web hosting package, your domain name is free. If you operate a business and opt for the Baby Cloud plan, you get unlimited subdomains without any charges. This is also true for higher ranking packages.
The $2.99 annual charge for a .com website used in conjunction with a HostGator hosting plan represents one of the most affordable. They do not offer free whois privacy protection, however. That costs an additional $14.95. Still, for the hosting's high reputation, this is a very affordable price.
Name.com offers hosting packages very similar to all the other domain registrars on this list. You also get one free domain name when you sign up for a plan for one year. The packages themselves are available in both shared and dedicated formats as well as those specifically tailored for WordPress. They even offer what they call and Unbelievable package which allows you to host an infinite number of different websites.
The domain registration prices at Name.com differ based on the URL suffix you choose. A .com domain cost $8.99 (renewal $12.99). Other options like .life are less expensive, while .host domains may cost you over $100. Like with all things associated with domain names, you must find available URLs or pay a premium price.
Privacy protection costs $4.99 annually on any of the domains that allow it.
Name.com has an extensive knowledge base on their website that they want their customers to use whenever necessary. However, if you do not find the answer to your question there, you may have to wait for business hours to get live help. Support through a chat service is available only from 10 to 5 daily, and phone support from 8 to 6 Monday through Friday. This limited availability makes them one of the less customer friendly options on this list.
Although 1&1 is definitely the oldest on the list, it's longevity does not have much to do with its benefits to you as someone who wants to register a domain. It is owned by a German corporation called United Internet and launched in 1988. Unlike some of the other domain registrars and web hosting companies, 1&1 only offers its packages to the US, UK, Canada, Mexico, Germany, and a few other European nations.
The services of the 1&1website hosting and domain registration company aligned with what you would expect from one on the top 10 list. They offer shared, VPS, cloud, dedicated, and WordPress specific hosting, tools to help you set up e-commerce shops and market your site, and SSL certificates to promote security online.
For customers who purchase a website hosting package, 1&1 has some of the cheapest domain registration around. A .com domain only costs $1.00 first year and then $15.00 / year. Every URL that you can register privately receives 100% free WHOIS protection.
Web.com Group Inc. started the Register.com company in 1994. It currently boasts registration numbers near 2.5 million for total domain names.
Register.com is one of the less expensive options on this list. A .com domain name costs five dollars per year at this time. Also, you can get any of the other most popular domain suffixes such as .org, .net, .biz, and .info for the same price. If you want one of these unique URLs, this may be the most affordable option for you.
Also, with WHOIS privacy protection coming in at just $11 annually, you end up with a relatively low yearly bill for your domain registration and security.
The company also offers web hosting, SSL security features, private email, marketing tools, SCO and PPC assistance, and other products and services that may help you grow your website into a successful online platform.
When it comes to customer service, Register.com does not offer live chat. Instead, you can send an email or call on the phone between 9 AM and 5 PM during the work week and until 10 PM on the weekend days.
This California company was launched in 2001, also operates a data center in Virginia, and the popular web host for nondevelopers called Web Hosting Hub. Their main focus is on website hosting and boast a nearly perfect uptime and exceptionally fast servers. You can get the usual packages of shared, WordPress VPS, or reseller hosting. They have additional options for larger companies or corporations that require more extensive hosting features or design services.
If you host your website with InMotionHosting.com, you may be eligible to receive a free domain registration. This exists for only some of their business hosting packages. If you do not use one of these options, your .com domain will cost $15.99 annually. The .com, .org, .net, .biz, and other suffixes all have the same price.
Privacy protection costs an additional $12.99 annually. If you get this for your domain, which is always a good idea, you will pay one of the higher yearly costs out of all the companies on this list. However, InMotionHosting.com does offer one unique benefit. They will give you 90 days to try out their web hosting and domain registration services with the promise of a full moneyback guarantee if you decide to use someone else.
Domains.Google only registers website URLs and does not specifically provide website hosting packages like all of the other options on this list. You do get free WHOIS privacy protection, a G Suite email address, and the ability to make customized subdomains. This last item is something that you can do with all other domain registrars, too.
The price for a .com website URL is $12 annually, which can be renewed automatically for as long as you want to. You also have the opportunity to pay for a full decade of domain registration at one time. Other suffixes are available at different price points.