What’s The Cheapest Domain Registration Company?

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You’ve got your business up and running and now are looking to secure your online real estate with a corresponding domain name, but you don’t want to pay a fortune for it. Who offers the cheapest domain registration?

With so many domain registrars out there, how do you know which one to choose? We review all the best domain name registrars but maybe you are only interested in finding the lowest price.

So, here we’re going to focus solely on price.

Note: we left out registrars which we would never recommend, and ones that do not offer email hosting, since we consider that to be a core component of domain hosting.

Article Overview

What Is A Domain Name?

According to Wikipedia, “A domain name is an identification string that defines a realm of administrative autonomy, authority or control within the Internet. Domain names are formed by the rules and procedures of the Domain Name System (DNS)”. In more plain English, this is kind of like your address because it gives all internet servers around the world one unique place to find you and your website.

Video: What Is A Domain Name Registrar?

Need some clarification on what you should be looking at when it comes to domain name registrars? Watch this short video clip for a clear explanation.

Finding A Reliable And Affordable Domain Name Registrar

First, the most important function of a registrar is to allow easy and effective administration and management of your domain name. Functionality or features to look for in a domain name registrar include:

  • An established reputation (given the ease of becoming a registrar, there are many fly-by-night outfits out there that will take your money and run)
  • No hidden fees (such as a fee for transferring a domain out to another registrar)
  • Comprehensive administration (for nameserver, mail, who-is records, etc.)
  • Reasonably priced registration fees
  • Accredited by a governing body (such as ICANN: The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, a non-profit organization)
  • Easy transfer of domain name in and out of registrar
  • Domain name forwarding
  • Manual and auto renewal – Careful with this one. Many registrars will try everything they can to auto-renew by default, which may result in you renewing a bunch of domain names every year that you don’t want to renew.
  • Private whois registration – Conceals your whois data, i.e. your name, address, phone, etc. from prying eyes
  • Do you need email accounts? Some registrars will host your domain’s email for you. This is practical if you need email up and running but are not yet ready to host.
  • Customer support – It’s crucial that your domain registrar have good customer support, whether via phone, email, or live chat.

Caution Against Hosting With Your Registrar

We leave hosting out of this discussion because we don’t recommend you host with your registrar. Why? Because they are two very different specialty areas and it is hard to be great at both… it’s like eating at a restaurant that sells both Chinese and Thai food and expecting both to be authentic!

How We Chose Our Rankings

This article’s rankings were based on price alone for domain registration. So you may be confused when you see that there are some companies with more cons than others that are ranked higher.

These rankings are purely based on the renewal price. Why? If you’re establishing a domain name for your website, you certainly don’t want to rely on the first year’s pricing alone. You’ll need your site’s domain to stay and prosper.

You may well find less expensive options, but odds are they are not an accredited registrar and you may have difficulty managing your names.

Cheapest Domain Registration Comparison Table

 NamecheapGoDaddyIONOSHost GatorDotsterMoniker
NamecheapGoDaddyIONOSHost GatorDotsterMoniker
View WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit Website
Overall RankingWinner2nd3rd4th5th6th
Price for .com (1st Year)$10.98$11.99$1.00$12.95$9.99$8.39
Renewal Rate (Per Year)$10.98$14.99$15.00$15.00$17.49Unlisted
Private Registration (Per Year)$2.88$7.99Included$14.95$8.99Included
Email Hosting (Per Year)$28.88$59.88/user$21.89$66.72$50.00$23.88
Customer ServiceEmail, Chat
Phone, FAQ, Email, ChatPhone, FAQ, ForumsPhone, Chat, Tutorials, ForumsPhone, Email, ChatPhone, FAQ, Email
View WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit Website

Namecheap Review


Visit Website

Namecheap has the second cheapest renewal rate and an established business history, making it our top pick. If you’re looking for easy and affordable domain management without unnecessary frills, Namecheap is a good company to go with. It’s easy to transfer your domains in and out as well.

GoDaddy Review


Visit Website

GoDaddy comes with a big name and is best known for their web hosting solutions. It’s easy to get started with GoDaddy except checking out can be a bit confusing for some. Customers say they constantly try to upsell and their customer support could use some help since they have long wait times.

IONOS Review


Visit Website

While IONOS has a great introductory rate of $1 for the first year, the renewal rate of $15/year will make this more expensive than our top 3 cheapest domain registrar picks if held for more than 2 years.

Host Gator Review


Visit Website

Host Gator is a big corporation with many awards under its belt. They’ve been around for a long time so they’ve had plenty of time to build their company. They pride themselves in customer service and have many features to choose from.

Dotster Review


Visit Website

Dotster appears to be extremely unreliable based on most user experience stories. We’ve discovered a significant amount of bad reviews across the Internet and people appear to be pretty frustrated with the company.

Moniker Review


Visit Website

Moniker offers an extremely competitive first-year domain registration price that includes private registration fee, but after scouring their website and other sources, we couldn’t find a renewal price. If you’ve renewed with Moniker let us know!

Who’s Your Favorite Registrar?

Remember this is just a listing of the top registrars by price, checkout our article on the best domain registrars to find out who the overall winner is (your domain name is a crucial part of your business investment, so we don’t recommend going for the cheapest solution). That being said, even those that are pricier, for example, register.com, which charges a $38 renewal rate, or Network Solutions, which comes in at a hefty $35 per year, don’t necessarily make the cut.

Want to learn more about domains and websites? Check out these five pitfalls to avoid when buying a domain and our comprehensive guide to building a website.

Which domain name registrar have you used? Was it a good or bad experience?

Kimberly has always enjoyed testing out the latest tech gadgets and loves seeing how things evolve. She’s a fast learner when it comes to the latest fads and likes sharing her findings with others. Although she loves technology, she also enjoys escaping the online world and likes to spend time outside away from the gadgets.

Leave a Reply

newest oldest most voted
Don Diego
namecheap is now $12.99 to renew plus icann fee
Kathleen Z
I just switched from GoDaddy to namecheap. Privacy protection is free. Positive SSL certificate is $1.99 per year. I made a mistake transferring my domain and I got immediate help through Chat and the representative fixed it and resubmitted the transfer request. That’s already better than every other registrar I’ve used, including bluehost and networksolutions. Thanks for the tip!
Actually it is not really free it is a PR stunt they jacked up the renewal rate by $2.00 to cover the privacy protection. Renewal is now $12,98 instead of $ 10.98. It is just a marketing scam now practiced by Namecheap.
i would recommend ipage, and even more if you use a coupon coupon
Good article – Note: godaddy is 11.99 for 1st year, then 14.99 – I don’t see how in the world they are second. I left them, as some have stated they constantly up-sell – and everything is an add on and more expensive (e.g. private registration and emails hosting). at 12 and 15 bucks, plus the 8 dollars for private registration…
Thank you! I used your link to thank you for the vital information!
wow, this is indeed a very nice list you got here, i have been using domainking as my domain registrar but i dont like there services, will be moving my domain now to either namecheap or godaddy.

thanks for this update, have a great day.

Just wanted to let you know that NameCheap doesn’t offer telephone support. They offer live chat and ticket based customer support. I have been using them for 6 years now.
Mike S
My favorite, and easily the one I recommend to everyone is Name.com. I have always enjoyed the dependability, reliability, and very smooth service that I get from them. I tried a few others, but it’s critical the registrar I use has a strong backbone to provide myself and my clients with responsive dns, etc. Their website gives me every possible option with regard to registration, dns, nameservers, etc, and is always fast. Equally important is their price — they always offer low price domains without a lot of gimmicks and hassles. .com domains are $9.99 and 12.99 to renew.
Hal Segal
I’d welcome your thoughts on Cosmotown, which charges only $8.99 for transfers and renewals of com domains, $8.69 for net and $9.90 or org.
Namecheap is, with all the respect for everyone, a scam company, I found a good domain name, paid what i was asked only to be told after that my registration was not valid because they considered the domain a premium one and wanted more money
I use icdsoft, they are not the cheapest but give good discounts if you have several domains (I registered as “reseller”) and very responsive support. They don’t hike prices when I renew so for me they are great value.
I went to name cheap and the cost is $12.20. Is there something else I need to do?
Tried 1&1 right now. Complete waste of time. Loaded up the names I wanted. Went to cart but because I’m in France they insist I use their French wesbite which is — in French. Like thousands here, I may be in France but that doesn’t mean I can speak French. Therefore. I couldn’t pay. Had to cancel order. Waste of time. Such an insular attitude that doesn’t allow multiple language options.
What do you know about Domainer Pro?
Namecheap : the first year private whois is free
1 and 1 : you have to choose 2 years domain subscription if you want to get firs year for 0.99$
Godaddy : offers one year domain registration for 0.99$ for new customers
me me
I was a new customer and Godaddy still made me buy 2yrs. to get the 0.99$ first yr.
I just did a chat with 1 and 1 support now. He says $.99 is accepted for one year, after one year you can pay the 2nd year renewal rate. Not compulsory paying for two years at start.

Namecheap is a great registrar company really cheap and easy to use they have a super customers service in live chat they stand with you until you find the solution if you faced any problems with your domains and sites i love it really worth the number one !

Thank you

Amna Khan
Thanks for the nice article. Has anyone tried rebel? I got first year with them very cheap (got those $1 domains), so now I have liek 20 domains I would like to keep.. but now I am thinking, even if its $1 more expensive, itll end up costing me $20 more.. Their service seems to be good.. not sure about pricing
Google does domains for $12 a year and includes private registration. That’s pretty awesome.
Sara L
That’s awesome until they 1) discontinue their domain service like they do more than half of the initiatives they launch (like Google Domain Parking for example), or 2) they harvest and monetize all your private data (your domain whois record, after all, has all your contact info).
Which registrar would be the best and cheapest for 20 domains for an individual, not an internet business?
Alex Schenker (Admin)
Hi Geo, some domain companies give you discounts for bulk purchases, but our list remains the same. Pricing for individuals and businesses remain the same as well.
Cosmotown offer cheaper price than any of the mentioned above companies and renewal price never change.
Dude…… Cosmotown looks amazing. $9 for a .com WITH free private registration? That’s amazing. Have you been with them long? I used to think Namecheap and Google Domains were the best/cheapest but if these guys are legit, they put all of these registrars to shame.
I have used GoDaddy, 1&1 and Namecheap among others. A few years ago I moved to Namecheap because of pricing and poor service from all the others. Namecheap was the lowest and I could renew with coupons to keep the price low in keeping with the list posted here. But not today. They are charging me $18.55 for my third year renewal and have rejected every coupon that coupon sites say are valid for this month.
jack bower
I advise you to use 1and1 it is the worst s*** in the history of internet. plz remove 1and1 from your list by experiment.
It sounds to me like you have meant to convey your advice to be *not* to use 1and1. Whereas, in this comment you expressed extremely conflicting opinions. 🙂
Have a good evening.
Thanks for this article 🙂 For most of the GTLD’s they are definitely the cheapest with 101 domains. But concerning ccTLDs I would highly recommend NETIM or Marcaria which are really competitive too.
Jim //Z\\\\
I had enough problems with domains (including registrars listed above) that I now just run my own DNS server. I’d love to find a registrar that just registers. I use afraid.org as my DNS secondary. Fantastic service (one man operation!) so I now use them as my registrar.
Alex Schenker (Admin)
Thanks for the feedback Jim. The only thing I’d caution you on is a fallback approach in case the “one man” in that one man operation closes their business or becomes unavailable – make sure you still have access to your domains. We recently switched from Fabulous to Namecheap for this reason (larger company and support staff).
Jim //Z\\\\\\\\
Thanks I had not considered the case of a registrar going out of business. I am not associated with afraid.org other than as a customer. I am happy with the service. Just to be fair I asked if the owner had any comment about being a one man operation. I post his responses here just to be complete. This not the kind of personal response that you’d expect out of the big boys.
Hi Jim,

I have no plans to close things. I have worked for top 100 Internet companies so I am quite comfortable and versed with operating infrastructure. Also – I did read your email within 4 minutes of it hitting my
inbox. No ads, no spam, my goal continues to be to provide a useful and reliable utility that just works. I have monitoring and failover systems, hot standbys, things break all the time, no one notices
because the network is designed for it. It doesn’t run its self though. I’m quite active on here. I have given presentations at DNS operators conferences to other operators about my experiences with operating this project, and I am quite approachable.

Let me know if I can further assist with the site or any DNS things.

With regards,
Hi Jim,

I have no plans to close the business also – but even if I did, I wouldn’t do it in a way that would lock people out of their own domains. People can freely come and go as they so choose, it is their domains, not mine. It’s not a bad idea to have help, and I will not hesitate to add it when needed, it is not off the table. Also, I do count on vendors, and I count on the work of a lot of other people before me, considering I use open source products everywhere, so I am not only “one man” in that sense, I couldn’t do this if not for those people, and I am grateful and glad for the opportunity to serve others.

Let me know if I can further assist with the site or any DNS things, I’d be glad to.

With regards,

I went to your site and could not find any pricing so I sent you and email.
I’d love to know how this works. I know only enough to sorta pay for my .com (website[?]or hosting, or domain) but almost always, even when I renew, for seemingly NO reason I can tell, I have to call them within the next day or so. because shortly after renewing my existing domain as well as when I fall for those dumb ads to upsell me all the way through to checkout, I can barely/hardly tell what it is that I’m paying for, much less what it does/if I want/need it/can I even afford it? Because I need something that it CHEAP and is just the following:
mydomain.com (along with whatever’s needed for it to function… aka… I need more than just the ‘right’ to use it for some predetermined agreed upon amount of time…. 1-10years…. maybe even far longer…)
custom@mydomain.com – My Custom Email with iMAP or POP(?)[I think] Function
Thanks for writing this. I have been using GoDaddy forever and was thinking of a lower priced alternative. But, with only personal 10 domains, it does not appear to be worth switching, I have found their telephone support to be quite good in my 21 years as a webmaster and dealing with hundreds of domains.