I can almost feel the excitement that comes with registering a new domain name — I have been there so many times during my journey as a website owner, webmaster and domainer.
You probably have some big plans and dreams for your next domain, and hopefully it works out for you. But let’s get to the very first step in the journey: What’s a good, trustworthy place to buy a domain name from in 2021?
There are thousands of domain name registrars around the world of all sizes, service levels, features and prices. Over the years, countless registrars have come and gone, and I have personally seen and dealt with many of them.
Top 5 ICANN-Accredited Domain Registrars
Of those that stood the test of time, the following five are among the best and most reliable companies where you can buy (register) a domain name knowing it is kept in a safe and well-serviced place. These were picked for their service reliability, features, reputation and prices.
Note: The prices listed below are for first-year registration cost. Most registrars offer a discounted price for new domain registrations for the first year only, after which the domain will renew at the full regular price. Refer to each company’s pricing list for more details on renewal costs for each TLD (domain extension).
Dynadot is one of my absolute favorite registrars and it’s the place that I trust to keep my valuable business domains at. A very reputable company that offers a solid service at some of the lowest prices on the market.
Advice: You better remember the birthday you enter during registration (first login) because you’ll need it later for some features, such as unlocking your account for a domain transfer — It doesn’t have to be your actual birthday, but any date you’ll remember.
- Easy-to-use control panel with many essential domain management tools and features.
- Advanced account security (account lock feature and optional two-factor authentication).
- Free WHOIS privacy (hides your personal details from the public WHOIS database).
- Live chat support, in addition to phone and email.
As the name suggest, NameCheap is one of the top destinations for price-conscious domain owners as the company is known for offering some of the best market prices for many TLDs.
- Nice and simple user interface.
- Free WHOIS Privacy (WhoisGuard).
- Live chat and ticket system (email) support.
Epik is another decent registrar that is particularly popular among domainers who maintain a large portfolio of domain names. Their prices are very competitive and they provide many features and tools for managing your domains. They also have a marketplace where you can buy premium names and/or list yours for sale.
- Optional advanced account security (mobile authentication & IP whitelisting).
- Multiple domain-related services under one universal account.
- Free WHOIS privacy.
- Quick customer support via live chat, phone and email.
Name.com is a well-established name in the web services domain (pun intended). An all-around reliable registrar with reasonable prices. One of their biggest drawbacks though is that they don’t offer free WHOIS privacy, which is available at an extra cost.
- Optional two-step verification and advanced security.
- Free URL and email forwarding.
GoDaddy is one of the oldest domain name registrars in the world, and currently the largest. This was the company I purchased my first domain name from many years ago, and despite the increases in prices over the years, they continue to be one of my favorite registrars.
Great service and lots of features, but not the cheapest registrar. For example, their WHOIS privacy service costs $9.99 per year. You could register a new domain with free WHOIS privacy for less than $9.99 at some other providers, but if your budget allows then GoDaddy is one of the best and safest places to register a domain name at.
- Advanced domain protection and security features (at an extra fee).
- Two-step sign-in verification (optional).
- Live chat, email and phone support.