Best Domain Registrars 2021

Looking for the best domain registrar to buy your domain name? We reviewed and compared some of the most popular domain registrars in the industry. Plus find tips to choose the best one for you.
Best Domain Registrars 2021

One of the things you should first consider when building your website is registering your domain name. Notice we didn’t say ‘create your domain name.

Why?

Because the domain name can be snatched at any time. There are over 350 million domain names now, and that number grows by millions each year. That means you need to get your domain name registered before someone else does.

You need a domain registrar to register your domain name. However, it is not that easy to pick a domain registrar at random. Making the wrong choice can lead to losing your domain in the future.

That is why you must ensure you’re using an accredited domain registrar. To ensure you’re on the right track, we’ve covered the following in this article:

  • What a domain registrar is.
  • How to pick the right domain registrar.
  • The top 10 best domain registrars of 2021.

Let’s get started, shall we?

What is a Domain Registrar?

A domain registrar is a company that allows you to buy and register domain names as a service. The company is accredited by ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers).

Using the internet without domains would be very hard. Visitors will have to type in long strings of numbers to visit your websites. Those numbers are called IP addresses.

Instead of typing those long and complex strings of numbers, visitors can simply type in your domain name, and they are directed to your website. For example, www.mywebsite.com instead of 09:84354:3456:5675.

ICANN is the body responsible for managing domain names –  they allow domain registrars to register and make domain names available for people.

What Does a Domain Registrar do?

All domain registrars offer the registration of domains as a service. The domains are stored in a centralised database called the registry.

A domain name can only work when it has been added to that database. And only domain registrars accredited by ICANN can make changes to the database.

When you purchase a domain name from a domain registrar, your domain name is added to the database with other information. You can make changes to this information using the tools provided by your domain registrar.

How to Choose a Domain Registrar

Whether your domain name works or not depends on your domain registrar. That is why choosing the right domain name is essential. Plus, some domain registrars do more than registering domain names. They also offer other web services including WordPress Hosting at competitive prices.

That is why we’ve reviewed all the available registrars, checked out their features and ranked the top 10 best domain registrars of 2021. For our ranking, we focused on 8 essential factors. These are:

  • Pricing and Renewal Rates.
  • Registration Period.
  • Domain Transfers.
  • Domain Expiration.
  • Privacy (WHOIS).
  • Add-on Services.
  • Domain Management.
  • Available Domain Names.

The most important factors are price, renewal rates, domain transfers and domain expiration. Some people have lost their domain names due to these factors.

We will help you avoid that experience by revealing the different plans in this domain registrar review. Scroll down to discover more detail of the Best Domain Registrars for UK citizens, and for additional advice on how to choose the best one for you!

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Best Domain Registrar Reviews

Here are our top picks for the best domain registrars.

#1. Namecheap

best-domain-registrars-maecheap-landing-page-image

Reasons to Buy:

  • Free WHOIS privacy
  • Affordable domain registration
  • 24/7 live chat support
  • Can purchase domains for up ten years

Upgrades and Extras:

  • Premium DNS: £3.50 /year
  • Web hosting: from £6.40 /month
  • Premium SSL certificate: £2.80 /year
  • Namecheap VPN: free trial, then from £0.60 /month afterwards

Namecheap Features

Namecheap is the most competitive domain registrar when it comes to price. Some of their domains cost less than a pound. Their website is easy to use and perfect for searching for individual domains. You can also search in batches. 

Furthermore, you can take advantage of other services such as email hosting, web hosting, and WordPress hosting. All of these can be accessed from the interface. The domain management interface is simple, but it is not as beginner-friendly as GoDaddy’s.

namecheap domain pricing

All their domains come with free WHOIS privacy protection. There is also a 24/7 support team to handle your questions and queries. You can also take advantage of the low first-time offer by registering for up to ten years upfront.

Namecheap Pricing

You can choose to register a domain for a period between one to ten years. You can also turn on the auto-renewal feature. Note that you pay an extra ICANN annual fee of £0.13 for each registration or renewal. You can also get a free domain when you purchase their web hosting plan.

TLD.com.co.uk.org.net
Initial Price Per Year£6.42£5.05£6.64£7.94
Renewal Price Per Year£9.39 £6.93£10.83£10.83

#2. GoDaddy

godaddy domain name registrar

Reasons to buy:

  • Competitive offers
  • Solid brand
  • Lots of subdomains and add-ons
  • Great telephone support

Upgrades and Extras:

  • Full domain privacy and protection: £7.20 /year
  • Ultimate domain protection and security: £10.80 /year
  • DNSSEC: from £2.15 /month
  • Email hosting: from £1.40 to £6.50 /month

GoDaddy Features

GoDaddy is arguably one of the best known and biggest domain registrars. They are popular for their eye-catching discounts and other mouth-watering offers. They offer a complete array of website-related services from web hosting, domain registration, email marketing, website building and lots more.

The domain management interface is easy to use, even for beginners. It allows you to change name services, update contact information, transfer domain and change their domain settings. Plus, there are a lot of subdomains to choose from. So even if your preferred domain name is taken with a popular extension, you can still get it with a less known extension.

godaddy domain pricing

GoDaddy also offers free WHOIS privacy protection. This protects your information and prevents spammers from accessing your contact information. Furthermore, the domain registrar is known for its promotional offers and also has a good domain name generator tool too.

They offer as much as a 50% discount. You should know that the discounts apply only to the first year. You will pay the regular price during renewal. Their customer support system is also top tier. You can reach them whenever you have issues with any of their services.

GoDaddy Pricing

You can choose to buy only a domain or get it as a bundle with other services. You can also register a domain for more than one year.

TLD.com.co.uk.org.net
Initial Price Per Year£0.99£0.01£7.49£11.99
Renewal Price Per Year£17.12 £11.99£19.12£15.12

#3. Domain.com

domaindotcom domain name registrar

Reasons to buy:

  • Competitive pricing
  • Free website builder
  • Top-level domain management tools
  • Good support system

Upgrades and Extras:

  • WHOIS privacy: £6.50 /year
  • Web hosting: from £2.70 /month
  • SiteLock security: from £1.45 /month
  • Website builder tool: from £1.45 /month

Domain.com Key Features

Domain.com has been in the business of registering domains for over a decade. They are one of the world’s biggest domain registrars. Besides that, they offer website builder and web hosting services with SSL certificates and Sitelock to protect from spam and malware.

Their domain search tool makes it easy to know if a domain name is available or not. Plus, you have access to all top-level domain name extensions and country code top-level domains (e.g. .co, .ca and .us)

On top of that, Domain.com provides high-quality domain management tools. These tools include free WHOIS, bulk registration, easy domain transfers, WHOIS privacy protection, private registration, email account, e-mail forwarding, and many other services.

domaindotcom pricing

You can take it a step further by purchasing web hosting if you like their service. This makes Domain.com a comprehensive domain registrar.

It is no surprise that Domain.com offers a sound support system since they have been in the business for a long time. You can access their support team via e-mail or live chat. You can also use their online guides.

Domain.com Pricing

Domain.com pricing comes in different tiers. The pricing for the first year is different from renewals. You can take advantage of the first-year low-price offer by registering for up to five years upfront.

TLD.com.co.uk.org.net
Initial Price Per Year£6.50£5.00£6.50£9.35
Renewal Price Per Year£10.05 £7.20£10.80£11.50

#4. Name.com

namedotcom domain registrar

Reasons to buy:

  • Free domain registration
  • Offers lots of add-ons and upgrades
  • Can purchase a domain name for up to ten years
  • Community service

Upgrades and Extras:

  • SiteLock security: from £1.50 /month
  • Premium SSL certificate: £0.60 /month
  • Name.com email: from £1.20 /month
  • Web hosting: from £3.60 /month

Name.com Key Features

Name.com is popular for its quality service and philanthropic acts to organisations. We will focus on the service here.

The domain registrar offers free domain registration for those who purchase their web-hosting service from them. There are also many upgrades to choose from, such as SiteLock, Google Workplace and Branded URL.

namedotcom domain pricing

Name.com offers WHOIS protection but only to selected domains. Plus, live chat support is restricted to specific business hours.

Name.com Pricing

You can choose to register a domain for a period between one to ten years

TLD.com.co.uk.org.net
Initial Price Per Year£7.40£5.92£7.40£8.88
Renewal Price Per Year£11.11 £7.03£9.62£12.59

#5. Google Domains

google domains registrar

Reasons to buy:

  • Excellent support
  • Straightforward prices
  • Ease of use
  • Free WHOIS privacy protection

Free Addons:

  • WHOIS privacy
  • Domain lock
  • DNSSEC

Google Domains Key Features

The world of domain registrars is filled with marketing tricks, hidden catches and other complexities. Google domains take all of that away with its simple and straightforward domain registration process.

You will spot the difference from the homepage. There are no promotional offers or headline prices. The prices are offered at a flat rate, and the features are clearly listed out.

The website is straightforward to use. You can search for any domain name from the homepage. The results page lists the prices for nine common top-level domains. You can choose to see all available extensions in alphabetical order with a single click.

google domains pricing

From the domain page, you will quickly realise that Google domains don’t offer some of the common domain extensions like .tv and .mobi.

On the upside, Google domains offer free WHOIS privacy protection for every registration. Plus, there is an excellent customer support system. A help link shows answers to common problems. You can also talk to a support agent via live chat, e-mail or telephone.

Google Domains Pricing

There’s only one upgrade from Google Domains – their Google Workspace email service, which starts from $6/user/month. Note that exotic domains do not fall under the $12 price.

TLD.com.co.uk.org.net
Initial Price Per Year£10£10£10£10
Renewal Price Per Year£10 £10£10£10

#6. Hover

hover domain registrar

Reasons to buy:

  • Easy to use
  • Competitive prices
  • Free WHOIS privacy protection
  • Impressive search tool

Free Addons:

  • WHOIS privacy
  • Domain lock

Hover Key Features

Hover is a quick, easy, and straightforward domain registrar. The company keeps upselling to a minimum. You can check the prices for domains or use the search box to check for your preferred domain.

The search tool on the website is impressive and easy to use. The results page displays the available domains and their respective prices.

You can filter results by categories such as Business, Personal, Video and Audio. This helps you to discover domains you would have missed without the search tool.

hover domain pricing

The domain management interface is easy to use regardless of whether you are buying, transferring or renewing a domain. All domain registration comes with free WHOIS privacy protection. You can also use registrar multiple domains at a discount.

Beyond that, you also have few add-ons, such as custom email. The only drawback is that the customer service team isn’t available 24/7. You can only reach them during working hours – 8 am to 8 pm Monday to Friday and 12 noon to 5 pm on the weekend (Eastern Time).

Hover Pricing

TLD.com.co.uk.org.net
Initial Price Per Year£9.35£7.90£10.06£11.15
Renewal Price Per Year£10.80 £7.90£11.50£12.95

#7. Bluehost

bluehost domain registrar

Reasons to buy:

  • Competitive pricing
  • Official partnership with WordPress
  • Quality customer support
  • Fantastic hosting bundle deal

Upgrades and Extras:

  • WHOIS privacy and protection: £8.55 /year
  • Professional email hosting Microsoft 365: from £25.80 /year
  • Website hosting: from £2.13 /month

Bluehost Key Features

Bluehost makes it to the top of the best domain registrars for WordPress. For starters, you can get a free domain if you purchase one of their shared hosting plans. (You also get a free website builder.) They are an official WordPress hosting partner, so you can be sure you are in safe hands.

The website offers a straightforward search system – the result page shows all available options. The domain management interface is easy to use and beginner-friendly.

Furthermore, you have the option to add WHOIS privacy protection to your purchase to keep your data safe from spammers.

bluehost domain pricing

The company also gives you the auto-renewal feature. This can help you keep your domain in case you forget to renew it. There is also a 30-day money-back guarantee for those who purchase their hosting plan.

They are reputable for top tier performance and quality customer support. If you ever run into any issue, you can contact the 24/7 live chat support for assistance.

Bluehost Pricing

You can get a domain for free when you purchase any of Bluehost web hosting plans

TLD.com.co.uk.org.net
Initial Price Per Year£9.30£18.00£7.20£10.80
Renewal Price Per Year£12.95 £21.60£12.95£13.65

#8. Dynadot

dynadot domain registrar

Reasons to buy:

  • Great search tool
  • Low transparent prices
  • Lots of add-ons and upgrades
  • Domain auctions

Upgrades and Extras:

  • VPS hosting fro £8 /month
  • Email hosting from £5 /year
  • Premium SSL certificate from £12.20 /year
  • Website builder tool from £7.20 /year

Dynadot Key Features

Dynadot is an exception to the general features of a domain registrar. For starters, the results page shows more than just the available domains and their prices.

Advanced search tools include Bulk and IDN (Internationalized Domain Name) search tools. There is also an option to specify the domain extensions to show up in your result and default settings for future searches. The IDN search tool allows you to search for domains in other languages.

If you are in the market for already taken or expired domains, you can get results from Dynadot’s Marketplace – a place where customers sell their domains to others. You can then make an order to buy that domain if it isn’t renewed through the ‘Backorder’ option.

Pricing is straightforward and competitive too. Domain registration comes with other features such as a website builder, free domain forwarding and a support system for creating and managing up to 50 subdomains, 10 email addresses, and 5 each of MX and TXT records.

dynadot domain pricing

Another fantastic feature is the Grace Deletion list. This allows you to return a domain you no longer want. A small fee applies, and there are terms and conditions associated with this feature. Still, this makes Dynadot stand out from other domain registrars.

The only spot in Dynadot otherwise impressive features is the customer support. While there is live chat support, it is not always available.

Dynadot Pricing

TLD.com.co.uk.org.net
Initial Price Per Year£5.99£5.50£7.50£4.99
Renewal Price Per Year£7.50 £5.50£8.99£8.99

#9. NameSilo

namesilo domain registrar

Reasons to buy:

  • Premium SSL certificate
  • Free WHOIS privacy protection
  • Competitive pricing
  • One-stop shop
  • Lots of add-ons

Upgrades and Extras:

  • Premium DNS: £6.50 /year (includes protection against DDoS attacks, DNS caching)
  • Premium SSL certificate: £6.90 /year
  • Website hosting: from £2.15 /month

NameSilo Builder Key Features

NameSilo is popular for its competitive pricing. This is especially true when you purchase domains in bulk.

Furthermore, there are a lot of free features thrown in when you purchase a domain. These are WHOIS privacy protection, e-mail forwarding, Custom WHOIS records, domain defender protection and DNS management.

namesilo domain pricing

They also offer other services such as web hosting, website builders, premium SSL certificate and premium DNS.

All of these services are offered at competitive prices. So if you are short on budget, you can use NameSilo as your one-stop shop to get everything you need.

NameSilo Builder Pricing

Classic domain names such as .com, .org and .net renew at the same prices. The exotic extensions have different renewal prices.

TLD.com.co.uk.org.net
Initial Price Per Year£6.50£4.70£7.75£8.50
Renewal Price Per Year£6.50 £4.70£7.75£8.50

#10. Network Solutions

network solutions domain registrar

Reasons to buy:

  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Competitive pricing
  • Lots of web services
  • WordPress hosting packages
  • It is beginner-friendly.

Upgrades and Extras:

  • WHOIS privacy and protection: £8.55 /year
  • Professional email hosting Microsoft 365: from £25.80 /year
  • Website hosting: from £2.00 /month

Network Solutions Contact Key Features

Network Solution makes it simple for anyone to register domain names with ease. You can get all the popular domain extensions such as .com, .net, .org, .biz, .info and other not so popular TLDs.

Four cloud-based plans are available, ranging from starter to premium. The basic plan comes with a 15 GB disk space, hosting one website, and five e-mail boxes.

You get a free domain name when you purchase any of the cloud-based plans. However, you can only get a free SSL certificate when you buy the premium plan.

There are also four WordPress Hosting packages for those who want to build with WordPress. You also get a free domain when you purchase their WordPress hosting packages.

networl solutions domain pricing

All the plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee. But you should know that the money-back offer doesn’t include refunds for registered domains – you can keep the domain.

To get started, simply use the search tool to look up your preferred domain name. The results page will show you the available domains related to your search. Premium domains are shown as well.

Network Solutions Contact Pricing

You have to create an account and select a domain name before viewing the price for your preferred domain name.

TLD.com.co.uk.org.net
Initial Price Per Year£18.00£18.00£18.00£18.00
Renewal Price Per Year£27.35 £27.35£27.35£27.35

What is ICANN Domain Registration?

A domain name registrar is a company that helps you to register domain names. You take advantage of this service by buying a domain name from them.

All domain registrars are accredited by ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers). It is this accreditation that allows them to register domain names for their users/customers.

A domain name registrar adds your domain name to the registry. The registry is a database of all domain names, and it is maintained by ICANN, a non-profit organisation.

All domain name registrars are not equal. Some have a license to register only specific domain names. 

Generally, all domain registrars can register the three most popular TLDs: .com, .net and .org. That is where the similarity ends. For instance, Google Domains does not register .mobi domains.

If you have a specific domain in mind, you need to look for a domain registrar to register that domain. You also have to be on the lookout for other features.

Tips on Choosing the Right Domain Name Registrar

Choosing a domain name registrar is more than just picking a company to register your domain name. Depending on your needs, budget and level of expertise, you might need a lot more than that.

While all domain name registrars are in the business of registering domain names, how they go about this differs.

They offer different pricing systems and extra features. Some of the paid features in a domain registrar can be free with another domain registrar.

To ensure you get the right fit for your needs, here are some criteria to look out for when shopping for a domain name registrar.

  • Pricing, Registration Period and Renewal Rates – The first thing you should consider when buying a domain name is your budget. This will help you narrow your search to those that fall within your budget. You should decide if you are looking to commit to a monthly plan or a yearly plan. 

    An annual plan will save you some money, but it also forces you to commit to a website builder. You can take advantage of free plans, but they come at a considerable cost. You have to use a pre-set domain name, and you would have access to many features.
  • Domain Transfers – If you don’t like a domain registrar, you can move to another domain registrar. There is a caveat: you can’t move your domain name within the first 60 days of registration.

    Some domain registrars make it easy for you to transfer domains, while others have a complicated process or charge additional fees.
  • Domain Expiration – Domain names are registered for a specific time. The least is 12 month (1 year), and the highest is 10 years. If you don’t renew your registration when it expires, someone else can register it.

    Some domain registrars offer grace periods for users to renew their domain names after expiration. You can use the auto-renew feature, but it is comforting to know that you have a grace period if your card doesn’t work immediately.
  • Available Domain Names – There are different domain extensions. Domain extensions are the words that end a website address. The most popular are .com, .org and .net.

    Chances are that your preferred domain name isn’t available with any of those three extensions. Some domain registrars offer other extensions such as .live, .online and .blog.
  • Privacy (WHOIS) – It is easy to know the owners of many domain names on the internet. This is possible through the publicly available WHOIS details.

    If you want your information to be private, then you need the privacy feature. Some domains registrars offer this for free, while some registrars charge for this.
  • Add-on Services – All domain registrars offer domain registration as a service. That is where the broad similarity ends. Each domain registrar has its set of extra services that they offer. Some of these services might be for free while others are paid for.

    These include domain parking, extended expiration protection, and even domain privacy. Some domain registrars also offer website builders, e-mail marketing and hosting services.
  • Domain Management – A domain registrar is authorised to make changes to the information related to your domain name. Ordinarily, that means you can make changes by using the tools provided by your domain registrar.

    How much control you have, depends on your domain registrar. Some offer complete and seamless management, while others have a complicated process.

Things to Watch Out for When Choosing a Domain Name Registrar

Just as there are good domain name registrars, there are also lousy domain name registrars. It is hard to spot the bad ones by simply looking at their websites.

In fact, the nasty ones are still in business because they have mastered the art of marketing. To ensure you do not fall into the hands of such bad companies, here are a few things to look out for.

  • Add-on Pricing – Many domain name registrars try to make extra money by offering add-ons for a fee. This isn’t a bad thing in itself. Some of the best domain registrars offer these add-ons. Before checking out, ask yourself if you need those features. If you don’t, uncheck them before you fill in your card details.
  • Bad User Experience – When you visit the website of a domain name registrar for the first time, observe how easy it is to you. If you find it difficult to access the pricing page or use the search tool, you should probably consider an alternative.

    While most domain registrars offer excellent customer support, you shouldn’t have to contact support for something as simple as looking up available domain names.
  • Poor Reviews – You need to consider what other users think of a domain name registrar before signing up with them. As a general rule, you should avoid a company that has overwhelming bad reviews.

    There are many options to choose from, like the ones in this article. Don’t let low prices carry you away. It’s better to pay a few more pounds for quality service than running into problems later on.
  • Hidden Fees – This is a downright dishonest practice. If you read reviews of a domain name registrar that charges hidden fees, it is best to avoid that domain name registrar. It is always almost impossible to get your funds back, especially if the company doesn’t have a money-back policy.

Conclusion

There are hundreds of domain name registrars and resellers in the market. We’ve helped you narrow your search to the 10 best domain registrars of 2021 with this review. You can be sure of excellent service if you patronise any of them.

Beginners always ask for the best domain name registrar for their specific countries. For instance, a user can ask, “who is the best domain name registrar in the UK?” or “Which is the cheapest domain registrar?”

Our answer is always ‘it depends,’ and here’s why.

Each of the domain registrars in the article has a peculiar edge over others. For some, it is straightforward pricing; others excel at customer support.

If you are on a budget, you can also find excellent domain registrars that won’t put a hole in your pocket.

All of the domain registrars listed here are secure, easy to use and perfect for beginners and intermediates. Their prices are also reasonable.

To avoid choice paralysis, we advise you to read our section on how to choose the right domain name registrar before making your choice.

FAQ

Your Domain Questions Answered

Yes. There are very good domain registrars, and there are the average ones. Some are more pricey than others too. To be on the safe side, choose one of the domain registrars reviewed in this article. You can be sure of quality service at a reasonable price.

Straightforward answer: you can’t. As soon as your registration expires, your domain name is up for grabs. (Even Google once lost their google.com domain when they failed to renew it on time.) If you want to keep a domain name for a long time, set up auto-renewal when registering the domain. As long as your card doesn’t decline, you can keep the domain name.

The best UK domain registrar is the domain registrar that meets your needs at your budget price. Generally speaking, Namecheap is a good candidate for that position. (That is why it made it to the top of our top 10 best domain registrars of 2021)

Yes and no. You own your domain for as long as it is registered in your name (or your company’s name). You lose ownership once your registration expires. When that happens, someone else can take possession of your domain name. If you want to retain ownership of your domain, you need to keep paying the renewal fees.

GoDaddy is the largest domain registrar in the world as of 2021. It has 17 million customers and manages over 75 million domains.

Yes! Someone can register your domain name when your registration has expired. It also happens when someone hacks your account or gets access to your login details. You can prevent this by enabling two-step (two-factor) authentication. Many domain registrars offer domain lock to ensure your domain name cannot be transferred without your consent.

This depends on what you are getting for your money. If you are looking for a domain name with no extra feature, you should set your sights on spending no more than £10 – that is the average price of a domain name. Those who charge more typically offer a lot of features and benefits.

The safest domain registrar is any registrar accredited by ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers). As long as they are accredited, your domain name is safe with them. If you want to play it safe, limit your search to the domain registrars reviewed in this article.

.com is the most recommended because it is easy to remember. People generally assume that domain names end with .com. However, if your preferred domain name isn’t available with a .com extension, you can consider other options. Besides that, some specific niches that would benefit from other extensions. For instance, NGOs will benefit more from a .org extension.

.co.uk is a good choice for those who are specifically targeting internet users in the UK. On the other hand, .com is excellent for websites that have an international outreach. Your final decision depends on your target audience. If you are focusing on a worldwide audience, .com is a better choice. You should note that your website will show up in related result pages regardless of whether you use .com or .co.uk.

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