Since it was founded in 2003, Bluehost has racked up more than 2 million customers. Unsurprisingly, the platform is more popular for its web hosting than it is for its domain registration services.
However, this doesn’t make it inferior to other platforms. If anything, Bluehost offers a fairly similar set of features as those provided by other domain registrars.
To determine whether Bluehost is the right fit for you, here’s everything you need to know about this domain registrar.
Bluehost offers a number of features that make it a reliable domain registrar. The first entails being able to manage your domain with ease.
Another one of Bluehost’s features that is a little controversial is the automatic renewal of domain names. We say controversial because it has its fair share of positives and negatives.
The fact that it renews automatically eliminates the worry of possibly losing your domain name just because you forgot to pay the renewal fee.
But on the other hand, the renewal means you’ll automatically have money deducted from your account once your domain expires. This can cause inconvenience if you were planning to transfer to a different domain or give up the extension altogether.
The domain privacy feature offered by Bluehost is another thing that makes it attractive. Similar to other domain registrars, this feature works by hiding your personal contact information.
So if an individual were to look up your domain name on the WHOIS public database, they’d only be able to access Bluehost’s contact information instead.
Domain lock is another impressive feature that Bluehost offers. What this does is that it lets you lock or restrict unauthorized access to other parties. Once you’ve chosen a domain name, lock it down so you won’t have to worry about other users stealing or transferring it.
Bluehost also provides domain forwarding, a feature that you’re not likely to get if you opt for other domain registrars. So how does this work? Well, if you have several websites, domain forwarding enables you to redirect visitors to another site. Doing so significantly boosts your brand’s visibility.
Ease of use
Getting started and managing your domain on Bluehost is very easy. This is primarily because the provider relies on the popular cPanel navigation tool.
However, Bluehost has completely customized their cPanel so that users find it easy to navigate from one section to another.
Apart from this control panel, another thing that makes Bluehost simple to use entails their single sign-on policy. Basically, you’ll be able to access all sections with one simple login.
With other platforms, you’re forced to sign in when you want to access your web hosting section. You then have to sign in again if you want to manage your domain or see your email hosting plan.
Bluehost simplifies this process by asking you to sign in just one time. Once you do, you’ll have access to all essential features, including the “domain manager”. This is a user-friendly tool that lets you handle all your domain needs. You’ll be able to:
- Register, redirect, assign and transfer domains
- View and set your renewal policy, add contact details, configure domain privacy
- Access your nameservers or incorporate a customer nameserver
- Lock your domain
While its array of features place it ahead of the curve, Bluehost’s customer support is yet another area where this registrar really shines.
The platform offers all kinds of support; from a live chat to direct phone line, email and support tickets.
With their live chat, you can talk to a support agent even if you’ve not signed up for an account. When we tested their live chat, we received a response in less than two minutes, which was a pretty good responsive rate.
If you prefer to carry out your own research, Bluehost has a very comprehensive knowledge base section. The portal includes an array of video tutorials, how-to guides, FAQs and other articles on different topics.
For customers who prefer to contact the support staff directly, we recommend that you first find out the team that can offer you the right assistance. Choose from:
- The sales team – this crew handles general inquiries or issues relating to potential and new customers at Bluehost.
- The technical team – if you have any support-related concerns, this is the crew to consult.
- The account management – for inquiries related to your domain account, billing, verifications and terms of service, contact this team.
As is the case with the other domain registrars we’ve examined, Bluehost is also very transparent about its pricing. That said, the platform has divided its domain names into three tiers, namely:
- Original top-level domain names
This category includes the most popular extensions such as .com, .org, and .net. The .com extension goes for $12.99 and renews at $17.99.
The cheapest extensions here are .biz and .org which both cost $9.99 to register. However, .biz renews for $16.99 while .org’s renewal fee is more expensive at $17.99.
- Country code top-level domain names
These extensions are specific to certain countries. .US is the cheapest going for $5.99 upon registration and $15.99 upon renewal. .ca sets you back $11.99 to register and $17.99 to renew.
.co.uk is the one of the priciest in this category, and it costs $24.99 for registration and $29.99 for renewal.
- Generic top-level domains
Here, the prices vary widely depending on the extension you use. You can pay as little as $14.99 for a .co extension, or as much as $69.99 for extensions like .financial, .condos, .flights and more.
Important to note though is that Bluehost charges a fixed rate of $15 for domain privacy. This can get quite expensive for individuals on a shoestring budget.
But it tries to make up for this by offering a 30-day grace period once your domain expires. It means that once your domain expires, Bluehost secures it for another 30 days while you look for the renewal fee.
Once the 30-day period elapses, Bluehost continues to hold it in a state known as redemption. During this time, your domain won’t be accessible for registration elsewhere.
But to remove your domain from the redemption phase, you have to pay an extra $7. Still, this is better than completely losing ownership of your domain.
If you’re looking for a domain registrar that offers everything under the sun, Bluehost is your ultimate solution.
The platform offers cutting-edge domain features that you don’t see with other registrars. This includes elements like a domain lock and domain forwarding.