The role of registrars

Posted by Chris Disspain on 20 September 2010

One of the most frequent inquiries we receive at auDA is, ‘Who should I register a domain name with?’ Our response doesn’t depend on which registrar sends through the largest Christmas hamper at the end of the year or who provides the most humorous banter during our frequent communication. Rather, we direct Australians to compare the services provided by the many accredited .au registrars and decide for themselves who offers the best prices and services to meet the customer’s needs.

Registrars operate at the front-line of the .au marketplace. They accept and process name applications, collect and update registrant contact details, renew domain names and provide first instance customer service and complaints resolution.

Most Australians look to their registrar for more than just domain name registration. Many registrars provide services such as website and email hosting, search engine optimisation, domain management and website design. When choosing who to register a domain name with, please consider the complete package of products and services you will need from your domain name registrar and who best fits the bill.

.au was not always such a vibrant marketplace with this high level of consumer choice. Back when auDA was first established, the market for .au domain names was a series of monopolies and users were unable to shop around for the best deal for a .au domain name, or a registrar whose services best fitted their individual needs. This is why one of auDA’s highest priorities was the introduction of competition and consumer choice into .au through the development of policies for a competition-based model, drafting of contractual agreements and codes-of-practice and the establishment of a technical registry system suitable for the new regime.

All of this ground-work would have come to nothing, and we would not have achieved today’s level of success, without the willing collaboration of the registrars themselves. The commitment in resources, finances, infrastructure, marketing and personnel required to become a .au registrar is considerable. It is a credit to those that compete in .au that the market has grown to over 1.8million domain names and that .au has a developed a positive international reputation as an open, reputable and reliable namespace.  

For all the reasons mentioned above, auDA views our interaction with registrars as an open, consultative and collaborative engagement. Australians can feel safe in the .au space, but on the very rare occasion that you’re not happy with your domain name registration services, transfer your domain name to another .au registrar or make a formal complaint through the auDA website. Our regulatory eyes and ears are always open...

Chris Disspain


If you have any questions or feedback email