Skip to main content


Why Does A Domain Name Cost Different Amounts At Different Providers?

Hover on February 18, 2016
comparison image

We all compare prices when making purchases, particularly online where it is incredibly easy to shop in multiple locations at once. For domain name buyers, it can be a big mystery why the exact same domain name is more expensive in one place vs. another.

To help you make a more informed decision with your next domain purchase, I’d like to clear up some of the confusion behind domain name pricing. There are many factors that go into setting the price of a domain name, so it’ll take a little bit of research on your end to figure out why your particular domain is fluctuating in price.

Below is a list of key considerations to be mindful of.

The Top-Level Domain is On Sale

Top-level domains (the last part of your domain name, for example .com, .org, or .xyz) often go on sale, so this would be the most obvious reason why the same domain has different pricing. Sales are a great opportunity to pick up a cheap domain, but be wary of the renewal cost. It might be better to get a domain at the regular price of $15 from Provider A, rather than a $10 domain that renews at $25/year from Provider B.

Domains Are/Aren’t The Main Product

A common practice at many registrars is to bring customers in with cheaper domain names, and make their margins through upselling additional services. The goal here is for your $0.99 domain name to turn into a $50 order after adding privacy, hosting, email and a website builder.

On the other end of the spectrum, Hover focuses solely on domain names and email. In some cases this will result in a domain costing a bit more, but the tradeoff is that we won’t try and confuse you into making additional purchases that you didn’t plan on making.

Additional Items Included

Before checking out, taking a look at what else comes with your domain may help explain a domain’s price. Look around your provider’s website and see if your domain will include any extras that provide better overall value. For example, Hover includes WHOIS Privacy with domain name purchases to prevent your contact information from being publicly available, whereas other domain providers will charge upwards of $11.99 for the same service.

Domain Support

Of all of the factors to consider, support is one that you really can’t put a price on. When something goes wrong with your domain name, you need to get it resolved instantly. If a provider is a dollar more but they will pick up a phone and help resurrect your website should it ever mysteriously stop working, it’s money well spent.

So…this is just a “why Hover is more expensive” post?

Not exactly. Many of the domain extensions we offer are cheaper than you’ll find elsewhere. Are all of them like that? No, and believe me, we’ve heard about it. If you have two browser tabs open – one that says a domain is $12.99 and one that says it’s $14.99 – then of course you’d want to know why there’s a difference. I would too.

Hopefully you can now see a more detailed picture of what else to look for besides a domain name’s price when comparing domain providers. It may be that sometimes a domain name includes privacy, customer support and is cheaper. Or, maybe all you’re doing is setting it up as a forward and don’t care about on-demand support or privacy. Either way, there are several factors that contribute to a domain’s price, and knowing what to look for will help ensure that you register your domain with whichever provider makes the most sense for you.