Upon discovering 1stdomain.net I was excited at all they offered. The 1stDomain.net homepage attacks the viewer with a multitude of offerings and special deals: Secure Your Online Identity, Multi-Lingual Domain Names, Buy 2 Get 1 Free!, New TLDs, Special Packages and more. With so many offers, where does one start?
For simplicity’s sake, I’ll follow the menu that remains on the left of the screen throughout the site.
Since this was my first time here, I followed this link thinking I would be taken to a registration form to fill out my contact info, etcetera. Unfortunately, it only takes you to a page with a brief bit of company hype and a “click here to register your domain name” link that simply returns you to the homepage.
So, assuming they’d get the necessary data I continued on to the next link in line…
Register Your Domain
Unfortunately, this link again points only to the homepage. I only want to register a single name, so the next two links: “Buy 2 Get 1 Free” and “Bulk Registration” aren’t too promising, but I click the first one anyway.
Finally, below more marketing hype, a box appears for me to submit what name I want. I enter it and click “Search”. My result:
“Sorry, all domain names you listed are already taken.
A search has revealed that all domain names you gave are in use by other companies or individuals. You cannot register these domains. Please click here to choose other domains.”
Okay, I want to try another spelling, so I click ‘here‘ only to find myself at…
Strange, I came only wanting one domain, and now I’m suddenly registering in bulk! Anyway, I type several different ideas into the offered box to see what’s available. Great, thirteen of my choices are available for registration and it shows I’ll be getting a 30% Bulk Discount, so my total price is only $455.00. Wait a second, $455?!? I can’t afford that much, so I back out to the home page and click on…
A quick page-flip and…
“At 1stDomain.net the registrar fee for a Domain Name starts at $8.95/year for bulk registrations, and at $17.90 Dollars/year for single registrations (with savings). This fee INCLUDES all InterNic fees and FREE PARKING.”
Wow, $8.95? $17.95? Now we’re talking! Alas, I can’t really figure out how much I’m going to be charged. There are three charts on this page trying to explain how much I can save with various numbers of years and bulk registrations, not to mention their famous two for one offer. Unfortunately, the tables don’t seem to make much sense. So, I head back to the home page once again, seeking…
Multi-lingual Domain Names
1stDomain.net also allows multi-lingual domains in Japanese, Chinese, and Korean for the same prices as English domain names. A simple translation program is available on the site, though it’s full of disclaimers, so I’d recommend you find a more reliable source before investing money in a possibly incorrect name.
As with many companies that have begun to offer multi-lingual or ‘native language’ domain registration it is not yet clear when these domains will be accessible, though the site gives the impression it will be immediate.
Unlike, most companies offering to “pre-register” people for the proposed new TLDs (.info, .biz, .name, .pro, .museum, .aero, and .coop), 1stdomain.net is only accepting email addresses for notification purposes on the latter five proposed TLDs. They are permitting people to “pre-list” for the .info and .biz domains, but they are not requiring a fee at this time.
The Name Wizard utility is a very simplistic tool to help select your domain name. Essentially you put a number of words into the Name Wizard and it places them in the various possible positions and compares them to a current WHOIS database to see if they’re available. This is one of the worst versions of this utility I’ve seen as it only uses the literal words you enter, failing to suggest anything remotely unique other then hyphens.
However, if you do us the Name Wizard, be aware that when you click the “Register Domain” button after selecting your domain, be aware that you will no longer be at 1stDomain.net The Name Wizard is hosted and operated by #1DomainDot.com. Why does this matter? Well, it’s good for you in the sense that #1DomainDot.com charges much less for domains then 1stDomain.net (only $34.00 for two years), but it’s bad because one of the basic tenets of ecommerce security is to be wary of sites that change to other companies without notice.
Although both 1stDomain.net and FirstDomain.net are owned by the same company, #1DomainDot.com seems to actually be a reseller for 1stDomain.com. Why they would set things up this way is beyond me, but they are.
I would avoid 1stDomain.net, FirstDomain.net, #1DomainDot.com and any other site having to do with G+D International LLC as a rule. All of their sites are intertwined and are seldom straightforward. Their prices and services are not very impressive and their customer service is sub-standard as well. I believe something strange is going on with this company, but I’m not giving them enough of my cash to find out the hard way what it is.
Better safe then sorry: stick with Dotster and/or DotRegistrar.com for your domain registration needs.
The Complete Domain Registrars Series-
- Own/Resell Multiple Domains? You need these guys!
- Full Service Domain Registration At Dotster
- 1stdomain.net – A Whole Lot Of Nothing
- PSI Web Domains – Register your domain in 17 languages!
- DomainsAtCost.com – Domain Registrations, Eh?
- FirstDomain.net – Non-Profit? Then Why So Costly?
- Dotster Customer Service – A Big Fat F
- A Dotster Offer Even I Can’t Ignore