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I have used numerous domain registrars in the past, including Godaddy, 1&1, Host Monster, IX web Hosting, the list goes on. (not talking about hosting)

I currently use GoDaddy, however, I'm not to happy with them. I need a great registrar! One who:

  • makes transferring easy
  • registration pain free, no up-selling
  • has great domain management
  • has amazing customer service

Maybe such a company does not exist. I don't know. Do you know of one?

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closed as off-topic by John Conde Feb 1 at 23:14

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3  
"List of X" questions like this one should be made community wiki. I converted this question. –  Robert Cartaino Jul 8 '10 at 19:30
    
"GoDaay" - did you mean GoDaddy? –  Paperjam Jul 8 '10 at 20:05
    
Ugh, I accidentally voted to close as 'Off-Topic' - my apologies please ignore the close vote –  Mark Henderson Jul 8 '10 at 23:42
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I've never had a problem with GoDaddy, but I just use them for registration. Every other aspect of the domain, including nameservers are handled by other parties. What issues do you have with GoDaddy? –  Bryson Jul 9 '10 at 7:03
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I think this question should is on-topic, shown by the fact that it's useful and the answers are great. –  Daniel Little May 8 at 6:19

18 Answers 18

up vote 18 down vote accepted

Gandi comes well recommended. I just moved some of my domains over there, it was a pretty straightforward process.

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Slogan 'no bs'. :) Their domain registration is a little expensive. –  citadelgrad Jul 29 '10 at 14:36
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Gandi is so extremely expensive, though... But they're great if you're an American trying to "off-shore" your domain assets. –  intlect Jul 29 '10 at 16:52
    
I like the full control over the DNS records that they offer –  JannieT Jun 4 '11 at 12:57
    
Their non-profit and bulk discount rates are very reasonable though. And they don't charge to keep a domain's information private (something that other major registrars charge a considerable amount for). –  Oli Aug 13 '13 at 14:48
    
Personally I would never use a company that doesn't offer 24hr phone support and gandi.net, good though they otherwise look, don't seem to offer this. –  technicalbloke Oct 29 '13 at 15:28

I really like Namecheap.

Transferring is easy. Domain Management is easy. There is no upselling, you buy domain, it's yours, Apply WhoIsGuard if you want stop personal details being revealed if someone does a WhoIs on your domain.

Can't testify with regards to customer service though.

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Seconded, great service and management tools without the constant spamming of advertisements. –  Nat Ryall Jul 8 '10 at 19:28
    
I contacted support once and it was a good experience. Highly recommended. –  The Pixel Developer Jul 20 '10 at 1:45
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I too used NameCheap a lot in the past. Thing is: 1. Namecheap is not a registrar. (OK, it is an accredited registrar, it just doesn't use its accreditation for domains you buy via namecheap.com) Namecheap is an Enom reseller. And Enom isn't exactly the best of registrars. It may have one of the best APIs in the business, but it has a lousy track record [google: enom sucks]. 2. Customer service: usually, morons with a script (with some exceptions, of course). Nice thing is it's live chat. Side note: they've never been able to actually help. Email support seems to be better though. –  intlect Jul 29 '10 at 17:07

Going through the checkout process at GoDaddy is a horrific experience. This is thankfully not the case with https://www.hover.com/

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Dreamhost is a great hosting company. I've been using them for like 5 years now with out a single complaint.

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I'm on DH as well, and the on-site shopping for domains is quite useful. A pity they only offer so many TLDs... –  Grant Palin Jul 9 '10 at 6:33
    
I use them for hosting, but GoDaddy for registration. If I should leave them as a host, I would be uncomfortable leaving my domains with them after the fact. –  Bryson Jul 9 '10 at 7:05
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Why? Godaddy is a webhost too. And Godaddy is known for shady business practices whereas DreamHost prides itself on sharing a "Don't be evil" policy like Google. At least DreamHost's domain registrar doesn't work with domain squatters. –  Lèse majesté Oct 7 '10 at 4:44

Name.com - I'm hearing many good things from others who have switched to using them.

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I have to mention Moniker. They're a top 10 registrar, they're US based (which is nice for Europeans considering that if anyone from the EU wants to screw with one of your domains, they're going to hit a US stonewall, but may not be that great if you're an American trying to protect your online assets), and their claim is never having lost a domain. They're pretty damn secure, and if you Google a bit you're going to see that they're the domain registrar domainers prefer. And domainers are a bunch of people very good at, oh well, buying domains and keeping them.

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+1 for moniker. Their tools make it easy to manage a bunch of domain names at once. Been with them for years. –  John C Nov 2 '10 at 5:25
    
Put off by one of their URLs: moniker.com/buyerauthenication/test.jsp They also don't seem to recognise Australian IP addresses when trying to purchase.. –  DefenestrationDay Mar 17 '12 at 6:52

Update: I had a terrible time trying to transfer to NameCheap having them postpone the process for 2 months due to their unlocking policies. Take a look at the comments before using them as a service.

If you can ignore all the annoying upselling then Godaddy is a decent provider, their management tools are actually pretty good.

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unfortunately its very hard to ignore their upselling - its everywhere and very intrusive imo. –  seengee Jul 19 '10 at 8:23
    
Upselling is a part of the business. I've used GoDaddy quite a bit and I've never had any problems. –  Virtuosi Media Jul 20 '10 at 2:44
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I've had some pretty horrible experiences with GoDaddy. I can't really think of any advantage they have over other registrars besides promotional pricing. –  Joe Philllips Jul 21 '10 at 2:06
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Please read some of the horror stories up on nodaddy.com before actually using GoDaddy. Between the upsell, the control panel made to make you buy more useless crap almost by accident and want to go hang yourself because you can't find what you're looking for, the lock-ins they try to enforce, the enormous price for their Domain Privacy option, and the really dazed customer support reps, I found myself wishing for a $79/year option to remove all crap from their CP... –  intlect Jul 29 '10 at 16:59
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Just to add to this thread, Godaddy has come under huge fire recently for supporting SOPA, the controversial anti-piracy bill. Tens of thousands of customers have left them in the past couple of weeks. –  DisgruntledGoat Jan 9 '12 at 0:09

I've used PairNIC for quite some time, mainly because I've been hosting with pair Networks since '96 or so and have found them to be incredibly reliable.

Definitely not the cheapest, easiest to use, or sexiest. On the plus side, there is no major upsell, the management tools are solid, and they aren't flakey at all.

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I think one of the upsides of PairNIC is the fact that you can VERY easily transfer domains between pairNIC accounts. Comes in handy when a client needs to have access to their domain and you need to migrate it out of your main holding account. They also allow for easy transferring to other registrars. –  Matt Mar 16 '11 at 15:33

For the Dutch market there is TransIP (www.transip.nl); Great support, direct registration of .nl and other domains (at other registars you need to fill in and fax forms to get stuff done, here you just sign online); Good prices and a good control panel. E-mails are mostly answered in minutes. It's my registrar of choice.

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I have used DirectNIC for many years without any problems. They offer a variety of TLDs and do not annoy you with constant up-sells like GoDaddy does. Their prices are a little higher than GoDaddy, but you can get decent discounts if you purchase in bulk or transfer in a lot of domains.

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I'm going to recommend easyDNS. They are a good domain name registrar and offer an excellent DNS hosting service. Their prices are not the cheapest, but I am very happy with the service I get for my money.

I've purchased domains with GoDaddy before and also find the upselling annoying. But, I have used them when buying a number of domain names on speculation – GoDaddy were cheaper than easyDNS for bulk – but later I transferred to easyDNS the domain name I ended up actually keeping.

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i found easyDNS costly than godaddy –  articlestack Oct 16 '10 at 15:56
    
Yes, easyDNS costs more than GoDaddy. Like I said, they are not the cheapest. I recommend them for their service and responsiveness. –  Chris W. Rea Oct 18 '10 at 0:30

I've been happy with Dotster, although they are a bit light on included features. Pretty much no-nonsense.

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I'm no longer a fan of Dotster. My domain just expired. I never received an email alert from them. I had to wait for my email to stop working before I noticed. Also, they changed my dns servers to a parking service. Once I renewed, they did not restore my dns settings... –  firedfly Sep 7 '13 at 1:23

I've had good success with Hover part of Tucows. They have phone and email support that are really helpful and no upselling.

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I use both omnis and godaddy and generally happy with them

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I've used 123-reg.co.uk for many years, and I have a number of domains with them. They are (one of?) the largest registrars in the UK.

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Awful company. I'm only here right now because I'm trying to get away from them having naively assumed simple as domain registration and DNS would be hard for any company to balls up! It's nothing but pain every time I have to interact with them, their hosting is rubbish and their control panel is a joke. –  technicalbloke Oct 29 '13 at 15:33

I have used UK Web Solutions Direct for years and have never had any problems. They are reliable and not too expensive.

On the flip side, I have used easyspace once and they were expensive, difficult to use and with extremely poor customer service.

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I want to add a scenario to think about when picking one of these companies. Recently a service I use called Jotform had their domain name which was registered at Godaddy frozen becuase of an investigation. The biggest concern is that it happened without any warning.. Here are some details about what happened. I'll bet that many of the registrars have policies that would allow the same thing to happen. In their blog Jotform states that it has moved to Namecheap and Hover because of their stance against SOPA and internet censorship. If you are running a site that has user generated or hosted content, take heed!

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I know I'm late to the game, but some additional input is never bad... I've heard namecheap and gandi are good. I just started using namecheap and I'm happy so far.

I would recommend staying away from 1and1.com and GoDaddy. Enough about GoDaddy has been said in this thread already. But 1and1 is a complete nightmare. I started with them many years ago, and increasingly became more and more disappointed. Now, it's to the extent that I'm transferring all my domains away from them. But this is painful (obviously)...

I think I'm going to stick with namecheap.

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