I’ve dealt with a lot of different domain registrars over the past few years, thanks to my involvement in buying expiring domains at auction. When you buy an expiring domain through a company like NameJet, part of the bid price (min. $69) goes towards one year of registration at the original registrar of the expiring domain. Based on my experiences, I thought I’d tell you about the good, the bad, and the ugly of Domain Registrars, especially regarding transferring a domain out to another registrar. And from the title, you know I’ll be explaining why I think Register.com is one of the WORST domain registration company.
After my one year is up after buying an expired domain, I like to transfer out the domain to one of my favorite domain registration companies, name.com or namecheap.com. So, having bought 75+ domains over the past couple of years I have had plenty of interaction with the domain registration companies. Two to three weeks before the domain expires I log into the current registrar and request the authorization code, or auth code, for short. Then I go to name.com or namecheap.com and request to transfer the domain and I paste in the auth code. Sounds easy, right? Well, it is very quick and easy to transfer a domain, unless you’re transferring a domain from Register.com!
EnomCentral is one domain registrar that got it right. You should make it easy for your customers to manage their domains, even when they want to transfer them out of EnomCentral. When I transfer a domain out of Enomcentral, it’s super easy to figure out how to request the auth code. You just click on the domain you want to tsf out, and then you select the third option “Request Auth Code”. That’s it! A few SECONDS later, you get the email from EnomCentral with your auth code. Five Stars for ENOM!
Network Solutions didn’t quite get it right, but they are not the worst registrar by any stretch of the imagination. The big problem with them is they don’t make it easy to find the link to request your auth code to transfer out. I an understand they don’t like to lose business, but it’s a little sleazy to make it difficult to find the auth code request link. So when I go into my list of domains and click on the one I want to transfer out, you have to scroll WAY down to the bottom of the page, and in really fine print you’ll find the Request Auth code link.
The good news is, like EnomCentral, there is no hard sell to keep your domain with Network Solutions, and the authorization code email arrives in just a few minutes. Nice!
And now for the ugly. Register.com just doesn’t seem to have the customer’s best interests in mind. First, they email you tell you to “keep your web address up and running” even though they don’t expire for several months. In that email they tell you renew now and save up to $27! Wow that’s great, right? Wrong. That $27 you “save” is the three year renewal compared to THEIR one year renewal rate. And their one year renewal is a whopping $35. That’s right, at least $24 MORE than the majority of the domain registration companies out there today.
Next, they send you an email with the dire subject line of “IMPORTANT — Your web addresses are expiring”. So I panick, and log in, and lo and behold, they don’t expire for another month! Again, in this email they offer the amazing low price of $35 for one year renewal. Gee, thanks!
And finally, when I do get around to transferring out of Register.com I log in, click on the domain(s) I want to transfer out ( and they do make you do one at a time too), I find the auth code link way down at the bottom of the page. Then I get this warning page with an amazing offer of only $20 per year, woo hoo!:
Click Continue Transfer and I get this another dire warning screen:
But there not done there! Nope, they want to “serve me better” by asking me why I want to transfer away from Register.com, etc….(you don’t have to answer these):
And finally…..you get to the last screen (REALLY!) where they give you there last example of ultra poor customer service. They tell you it will take 4 – 5 days for them to get around to sending the auth code email.
I picture a large office, filled with monkeys sitting at desks, manually sending out authorization code emails.
I mean really? Why does it take so long for them to send this auth code, when all other companies send it out immediately upon request?
After 3 days of no auth code, I called the Register.com customer service. After waiting 10 minutes to talk to a rep, she told me it does indeed take longer when you request the auth code online, however if you call in they can do it right away! Then of course, she tries to sell me on keep the domains with Register.com, or maybe I’d like to use them for hosing, etc , etc.
So there you have it. If you can help it, do NOT register your domains with Register.com, and if you do get stuck with them through a domain auction purchase, be sure to begin the transfer process a little earlier than you would with any other registrar.