7-Point Basic Checklist For Selecting a Domain Registrar
Every day, more and more people, businesses and services are becoming part of the world wide web. Anyone can easily build their own website these days, be it for professional, commercial or personal use.
So if you have decided to launch a new website, and you have chosen the perfect name for it, but still wondering which registrar you should use to register the domain name with, the following checklist outlines the basic things you should look for in a registrar.
Before signing up with any registrar do some researching about the company and read what other users have to say about it. Also, make sure the registrar is accredited by ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers).
2. Associated Services
Almost all registrars offer free DNS (domain name server) services with each registration. DNS allows you to point your domain to your website host so that whenever a user types your domain name into their browser it will be resolved to your website’s IP address and the user will be able to access and view your site. Some registrars offer extra free services like domain parking, placeholder page, free ad-supported hosting, free email, etc.
Certain registrars are known for being secure and trustworthy while others are notorious for losing their customers’ domains. A secure registrar will always ask for verification (via various methods) when transferring a domain out of your account, will enable you to lock your domains so they may not be transferred to another registrar before you unlock them, will send you multiple notifications of a soon-to-expire domain, and will only lock down your domain if it explicitly violates applicable law or the terms of service (TOS) you agreed to.
4. Transfer Out
All registrars are required by ICANN to make it possible for their customers to transfer their domain names to another registrar. However, some registrars have easy and automated steps for transferring domains out to another registrar, while others may impose some restrictions and requirements and give you a really hard time before releasing your domain. Make sure that the registrar has a clear and simple policy for transferring domains to another registrar.
5. Whois Privacy
When you register a domain name you will be required to provide your personal name (first and last), your address, email and phone number to be kept in the ownership record of that domain (Whois record). All of this information will be visible to the public and anyone can search the Whois database for your domain name and view your personal details.
Many registrars offer a service called Whois privacy or private registration, which means all of your personal details will be removed from the public Whois database and will be replaced with the registrar’s company name, address, and phone number. You will still be the legal owner of the domain but no one will be able to verify that publicly.
Most companies charge $10-$30 per year for a .com, .net, or .org domain registration. If you are going to register just a few domains then price should not be a big deal for you. It only makes a huge difference for those who register large numbers of domains (bulk registration). Some registrars offer big discounts on bulk registrations.
7. Customer Support
Good domain registrars will have different channels for customer support and help including a Q&A section or knowledge base, 24/7 phone support, live chat, email and/or ticket system. When in doubt, give them a call or send an email with some pre-sale questions to test their helpfulness and response time.