Are you considering a new business venture, starting a blog or setting up an online store? Securing a domain name before someone else does is a crucial first step towards turning your idea into a reality. By registering a domain name, whether it is a .com or .com.au, you are safeguarding the future of your brand and concept.
To help you get started, I have researched and reviewed the top 5 domain registrars for Australians, from an Aussie perspective.
If you want to quickly find my #1 pick, check out the comparison table below, which includes a wide range of domain options from .com.au to .melbourne.
Let’s dive in!
How I Identified the Best Australian Domain Registrars
Having purchased hundreds of domains for myself and clients, I have learned what is essential and what shiny gimmicks to ignore. There are many things to avoid when purchasing a domain, and I’ve narrowed down the crucial factors that I consider when selecting a domain registrar.
- Reliable Hosting Service
- Affordable Pricing
- High-Performance Servers
- Suitable for International Users
- Best for .AU Domains
- Competitive Pricing
- Free Migration Services
- Exceptional Customer Support
Best Domain Registrars Australia 2023 + Reviews!
1. BlueHost Review (Awesome Hosting + Free Domain)
BlueHost is a one-stop-shop for domains and web hosting, making it a great option for those starting out with their first website. Their plans start from $3.95 per month and include hosting, as well as a free .com domain. Additionally, BlueHost has a reliable hosting service and offers one-click WordPress installs, making it an easy choice for new website owners.
However, BlueHost doesn’t provide any .au domains, which may be a drawback for Australian website owners. Nevertheless, the renewal price for their .com domain is reasonable, coming in at only $11.88.
Overall, BlueHost is a solid choice for website owners who want a reliable hosting service and don’t need an Australian domain extension.
2. Crazy Domains Review (Best for .AU Domains, Price and Customer Support)
If you’re on the hunt for the best place to register your .com.au domain name, look no further than Crazy Domains. As a full-time web designer and online marketer, I can vouch for their exceptional customer support, competitive prices, and extensive range of domain extensions.
Crazy Domains was founded in 2000 in the USA and has since expanded to become a service leader in Europe, NZ, Middle East, and Australia. With millions of domains sold and managed, it’s clear they know what they’re doing.
One of the biggest draws for me is their extensive catalogue of Aussie domain name extensions, including .com.au, .net.au, .org.au, .melbourne, and .sydney, as well as other popular extensions such as .com, .org, .net, .biz, .co, .club, .tv, .store, and .online.
When it comes to pricing, Crazy Domains offers .com.au domains starting from $18.99 for a 1-year registration, with the option to lower the price to $14.99 for a longer registration period. This is significantly lower than other providers who charge between $30-$50.
Overall, I have been more than satisfied with Crazy Domains. Their competitive prices, exceptional customer support, and free migration services make them the best choice for domain registration.
3. NameCheap (Great for Cheap .com Domain Names)
If you’re looking for an affordable provider for .com domains, NameCheap is a great option. Since 2000, they have been providing cheap domains and excellent customer service, becoming the third largest domain registrar in the world with over 11 million registered domains.
While NameCheap doesn’t offer as many Aussie domain suffixes as Crazy Domains, they still have a decent range of .com.au, .org.au, and .net.au domains available.
For a .com.au domain, the initial signup fee is $21.31 with a renewal fee of $24.16 per year. Their .com domains are even cheaper at $11 with a renewal fee of $15 per year.
The only downside to NameCheap is their lack of a toll-free number from Australia, but their prices and support still make them an excellent provider.
4. GoDaddy Review (Good Alternative to Crazy Domains)
GoDaddy is another popular domain provider that offers affordable .au domains, with prices starting from $9.95 and a renewal price of $16.
While their prices are the cheapest of the three providers mentioned here, their customer support can be lacking. I’ve personally experienced issues with their support team, being passed around from one person to another to resolve a DNS issue.
That said, GoDaddy still has a clean interface and is a reputable domain provider. If you’re looking for a budget-friendly option and don’t mind the potential customer support issues, GoDaddy is a good alternative to Crazy Domains.
5. Google Domains Review (One Stop Shop)
Looking for a domain registrar that offers seamless integration with popular website builders like Shopify, Weebly, WordPress and their Gsuite platform? Look no further than Google Domains! While their interface is simple, clean and easy to navigate, what sets Google Domains apart is its one-stop-shop service for domains, email and website builder. The only downside is that they don’t support .com.au domains and their .com prices start at $18, which is on the higher side.
What To Avoid When Purchasing a Domain Name
After using several different domain providers, we have learned what is needed and what isn’t. Here are a few things that many providers will try to opt you in for.
Custom Email Address
While having your own custom email address like firstname.lastname@example.org is a good thing to have, many domain providers push their own (crappy) email providers. These email interfaces are often outdated and don’t provide mobile support or apps. On top of that, domain providers typically charge a premium for a custom email address, ranging from $7-$20 per month. We recommend using a service like Google Gsuite that connects directly to your website, allowing you to use a Gmail interface connected to a custom email. Gsuite also offers integration with Google Drive and other cloud services.
Many providers push for an SSL certificate, which displays the padlock icon in the search bar of a website. However, reputable web hosts like BlueHost or SiteGround offer this for free. Not only does this save you $30, but it also provides added security. Having an SSL certificate indicates to visitors that there is an encrypted connection between the server and the website, which is crucial for security. Even Google has stated that websites without an SSL certificate may display a nonsecure icon, which can deter visitors.
Custom Website Builders
Some domain providers offer their own custom web design tool, but we have found these to be clunky and lacking the support, themes, and plugins that WordPress offers. While these tools may be free or offered at a small price, we recommend using a more robust website builder like WordPress for a better user experience.
Optional Privacy Protection
Privacy protection is an optional feature that can be useful, depending on the nature of your website. This feature enables you to keep your personal information, including your name, address, phone number, and email address, private from the public Whois database. It can come in handy if your contact form isn’t working, for example.
However, it’s important to be aware that privacy protection can also work against you. Telemarketers and service providers may contact you and try to push their web design or SEO services. Therefore, it’s important to consider how private you want your website and data to be before deciding whether to use this feature.
Choosing the Best Domain Suffix for Your Website
Clients often ask me what type of domain suffix they should choose for their website. The answer to this question depends on your target audience. Let me explain.
If you’re creating a website for your local cleaning business, for example, and your target audience is predominantly local, then a .com.au domain suffix would be ideal. This suffix is specifically designed for small Australian businesses targeting Australian customers.
However, if you’re planning to open an online store that sells custom homemade mugs and you want to target a global audience, a .com domain suffix would be more appropriate. While you may be based in Brisbane, it’s important to remember that Australian traffic only represents a small percentage of all internet traffic. Therefore, having a .com domain suffix would enable you to target visitors and searches from all over the world.
Another example would be if you were a stay-at-home mum who loves to cook classic Aussie dishes and enjoys DIY projects. While a .com.au domain suffix may seem like the obvious choice, it may actually be more beneficial to choose a .com suffix. This would enable Australian users to find your articles while still allowing people from other countries to access your content.
Choosing the right domain name is an important step towards establishing your online presence. Once you’ve chosen your domain name, you can move on to creating your website and sharing your products, services or thoughts with the world.
If you’re looking for a reliable domain provider, I would recommend Crazy Domains. They offer excellent customer service, competitive pricing, a wide range of domains, and a local phone number for support.
If you found this guide helpful, please let me know in the comments which domain name you decided to go for. And if you’re ready to create your own website, check out my top web hosting guide for WordPress-recommended picks.
Thank you for reading!