Are you one of those who just type in the domain name you want for your website in the address bar and then hit the enter key? This way, you find out if that website is taken or not. Yep, that is a simple way to check domain name availability.
To have a website in an address up and running, one needs to register a domain name. For that, you need an ideal registrar that will provide the best service.
What is a Domain Name?
It is just a fancy technical word for the web address. The words you put in on the browser to access a specific site is the domain name. Well, there is a reason for it. As you know, computers run on numbers only. Then, the websites you are visiting are actually hosted on another computer. That computer has an address, the address is a number.
Now, which is harder? Remembering a name or number? Number of course, given you are an average human. So, suppose you found your golden goose, the browser is showing “server IP address could not be found”. Now what?
Here are 4 Tips You Should Remember to Pick the Right Domain Registrar
1. Find the lowest Prices, Fees, and Period
You might think since everything is monitored by the non-profit agency ICANN, the prices will also be the same. In reality, it is pretty much the opposite. ICANN charges a minimal fee per year for registration or extension. The cost is something in the range of $0.18.
Without such a nominal fee, the organization does not control how each registrar shall price their service. So, you will have to check all the significant domains to find the right price. Many registrars offer lucrative deals; some even give free registration offers bundled with other services. Some provide the first year free if you register for a long time.
So, be careful and check the total price. They might charge none for the 1st year. They might then factor it in the cost of each year’s extension to reap you off. Check the total price as well as the price of each extension period.
2. Auto Extension and Grace Period
When you go into a registrar’s website, you will find that some have an “Auto-renewal” option. You can turn it on or off. This auto-renewal option lets the registrar extend your registration for perpetuity, up and until you turn it off. Or maybe, your credit card got declined.
So, initially, a person can register a domain only for 10 years at the highest. When you do so, the registrar will charge you for those years in a single payment. Then, keep the auto-renewal option on and provide your credit card details. The registrar will keep extending the registration period and charge your card for it. You can live without having a fear of losing the web address.
If, by chance, your domain registration expires, then, as per standard custom, the web address is auctioned off. Anyone can submit a bid, including you, to obtain the web address. In such cases, the prices might substantially go up. However, many of the registrars have a grace period.
That means, the registrar waits a definite number of days for the initial registrar to renew the registration before it auctions off the site. Before paying, check whether the registrar has such grace periods and how much.
3. Compare Add-ons Pricing
So, you have got the perfect registrar, which is offering the cheapest registration and renewal fee all around. It has even got a charge free auto-renewal option and has a pretty considerate extension grace period. Now, all that’s left is to click on the checkout button and confirm the payment.
Just then, you see, the registrar is offering some add-ons and even showing they are on a promotional discount. You come to realize you actually need those add-ons. You need a website hosting service, a website builder, and a security layer. Pretty alluring, right?
Just hold on before you add those to your cart. First of all, it is never a good idea to have web hosting and domain registrar from the same company. Doing so makes your core and must needed services dependent on a single organization. They might take drastic measures to keep you bound within them. Secondly, there are specialized companies that provide those add-ons services like hosting, security, web builder. The chances are their prices, and dedicated services are much better, so compare each.
4. Read Terms of Services
When do we ever read this! It is online, they are long-standing, terms and policies are standard, right? Well, even though it is online and all, this service is directly related to money, the terms are always tricky.
There may be hidden costs, extra charges, some rip off policies that make your site vulnerable. The registrar might even take advantage of your slight vulnerability to take advantage and put some bogus charges on your credit card. So, do read the terms and policies before signing on.
Look for any shady terms, provision, and determine whether the pricing and charging policy is clearly stated. Having hazy terms is a risky business.