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Where to buy domain names – Everything you need to know

So, you’ve got a great idea for a new website or blog. Just think of a snazzy name, stick it on the home page and you’re good to go, you might think. However, it’s not just as easy as that, it’s important to do some research on where to buy domain names.

Choosing a domain name for your site is of huge importance – in many cases it’s the first impression a user gets of your site – so you want to make that impression lasting. But where do I go to actually buy domain names?

The short answer is – many places. And although it may seem like a complex process, it really isn’t. However, you should still do plenty of research on where to buy domain names as some registrars are not officially registered and could be out to scam buyers.

Once you register your domain, you need to host your website somewhere. Luckily, you’ve landed to the right place! Cloud With Me offers a premium onboarding hosting solution in three clouds – Google Cloud, AWS and Microsoft Azure. Come check it out now.

Domain Registrars

Put simply a domain name registrar is a service that lets you buy and register domain names. Domain name registrars have to be accredited by ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers). As well as that, each country will have their own body which tracks officially accredited registrars for their own specific country code top-level domains (ccTLDs), such as .ie, and co.uk.

Without this system we would have really long and confusing IP addresses, instead of the easy to use and remember domain names we have today.

Check if your domain is available

This is a critical, yet often overlooked, stage of the domain acquisition process. Some entrepreneurs will get a great idea for a name for their site and just assume that it is available. Maybe they proceed with some other aspects of the business with this name in mind, only to find weeks or months later that any variation of what their site name is is already taken.

Checking what domain names are available should be one of the first steps of the process. While your idea may be original, there is no guarantee someone hasn’t thought of it before. Chances are you may have to look for an alteration of some sort to find an available address. Most domain registrars will have a search box where you can check this.

Things to keep in mind

Choosing which registrar you register your domain with can be daunting, considering the amount of options available. It’s a very important stage of setting up a blog or website.

There are hundreds of domain name registrars to choose from. Many registrars are companies which sell domain names and compete in terms of price, customer service and other services such as web development. Domain names can also be bought through resellers which have trading arrangements with accredited registrars.

Remember that buying a domain name is not just about price. Registrars that provide good customer service and other value-adds can be an asset to a business.

Be careful – some registrars may seem to have an absurdly low price for registering your domain, but often don’t include include necessary ‘extras’ in the headline price. Kind of like the Ryanair of setting up your website.

For example, many will offer hosting as part of larger more expensive package, when you will probably get a better deal on hosting elsewhere. Cloud With Me offers simple cloud hosting solutions, and you can even register a domain through Google Domains!

Another key facet of choosing your domain registrar is the support it offers. Chances are things won’t go wrong (you’re more likely to have problems with a poor hosting provider for example) with your registrar, but it’s always good to be able to rely on support when needed. Thus, check out what kind of support and customer service options are available and how responsive they are.

Where to buy domain names – Options

Here is a list of the major domain registrars and their main advantages and disadvantages. These may vary region to region as some registrars focus specifically on their own ccTLD.

Google Domains

Looking for a domain registrar sometimes leads to hassle and uncertainty as most of the providers are not household names to the average person. Going for the cheapest option when looking at where to buy domains may only save you a few dollars a year. In a lot of cases it’s better to simply sign up with a big-name provider that you know will give you a quality service, and there is little bigger than the big G itself. What’s more, register your domain at Google Domains via Cloud With Me and you can get it for a reduced price!

GoDaddy

The most popular domain registrar. Domain names on GoDaddy can be seriously cheap, but it doesn’t necessarily equate to quality. Undoubtedly it does offer a great service most of the time, but their design and ability to use the service could be improved. There are constant upsells of their other products. Still, the millions who register with them speak for themselves.

Namecheap

Namecheap is another of the most popular domain registrars, with around five million registered with this company. As the name suggests, they have some of the most affordable prices out there, but as with GoDaddy there is quite a lot of upselling going on to get you to add more products. It has a swift checkout process, and also a helpful FAQ section if you do run into any setbacks. However, they do only offer chat support, so you won’t be able to speak to someone if the need arises.

Hover

Hover’s advantage lies in the fact that it is incredibly straightforward. They offer domain registering and no other additional services. As a result it’s easy to register a domain with them, because that’s all they do. The process is fairly streamlined and the pricing is fairly average as far as it goes. Support could well be improved in terms of number of options, however. As it continues to grow it could challenge the traditionally biggest registrars.

Name.com

Name.com isn’t the cheapest, but they do have aggressive pricing plans, and fast and personable customer support. It offers an all-in-one approach with complementary products. You can bundle your domain, website builder and email together on their platform.


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