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How to Register a Domain Name

It is important to note that domain name registration does not require that web hosting be purchased with it, just as web hosting does not require domain name registration through HostGator's registrar LaunchPad. You can choose to sign up for either one separately.

This article will cover the following topics:

Register a Domain with a New Web Hosting Order

If you are ordering a new web hosting package with HostGator, it is best that you register your domain at the same time you purchase your web hosting. On the web hosting order form, there is a section where you can register your domain. Simply specify the domain you want to register on the order form, and we will include it in your order.

Launchpad Domain Registration

If you are registering a domain without hosting, the recommended method is to register it automatically online. However, some domains and payment methods may require you to use support to register your domain:

How to Register a Domain Automatically

Here is a video guide we created to assist you with your domain registration.

Via hostgator.com/domains

If you are paying with either a credit card or PayPal, you can register any of the following domain names automatically via hostgator.com/domains directly.


HostGator Domains - Front-of-Site

Via Customer Portal

To register a new domain through your Customer Portal:

  1. Click the Domains tab from the left-hand menu.

    Customer Portal - Domains

  2. Hit the Register a Domain button on top.

    Custpmer Portal - Domains - Register a Domain

  3. You will be redirected to the Search Domain page. Enter the domain you want to register in the search box and click the Search button.

    Customer Portal - Domains - Search Domains

  4. If the domain is not available, you may either search for a different domain or add a recommended alternative domain to your cart with the Add To Cart button.
  5. If the domain is available, it will automatically be added to your cart along with Domain Privacy.
    HostGator Domains - Search Results
    Please refer to this article to know more about Domain Privacy and to help you decide wither to keep it or not during the registration, though we strongly recommend you do so: Domain Privacy
  6. Privacy protection may be added or removed from your domain by clicking the x or + next to Privacy Protection in your cart.

    Remove Domain Privacy

  7. You may search for additional domains you wish to purchase or click the Add To Cart button next to any domain recommendations you'd like to add.
  8. Once your selection is complete, check your domain(s) to make sure the spelling is correct, and it is the exact domain you want to purchase. You can also remove extra domains or domain privacy in your cart.
  9. Click Continue to Checkout.
    Note: If you do not have an account, you will be prompted to create one, or you may use your existing billing account credentials to log in.
  10. Select your preferred payment method, enter your details, and click Continue to Checkout again.

    Domains - Choose Payment Method

  11. On the next page, you will have the option to change your registration term, set your name servers, and enter your discount code.

    Domains - Fill in Details for Name Servers, Coupons and Term

  12. Once everything is set, select the checkbox for the Terms of Service, Domain Registration Policy, and Privacy Policy to confirm.
  13. Click Place Your Order.

Once the domain has completed the provisioning process, which usually takes 24-48 hours, you will be required to validate your domain order. This is a required step in the domain registration process in accordance with the ICANN 2013 Registrar Accreditation Agreement. For more information regarding the domain order validation process, please see the following article:

You can check the status of your domain through your Customer Portal's Domains section.

If you have difficulty choosing a domain name, here are some articles with tips on making your decision:

How to Register a Domain with Support Assistance

To register domains not supported by the online portal, or to pay with another method, please contact our Billing department via phone or Live Chat, and we will assist you in registering your domain.

For a complete list of the domains that we can register, including all domains not available through our online portal, please see the following article:

Note: Any domain that requires Live Support to register can only be registered by a customer who already has a HostGator billing account. A HostGator billing account may only be acquired by purchasing hosting from hostgator.com or an eligible domain from register.hostgator.com.

Does HostGator Protect Me from Domain Name Sniping?

HostGator cannot guarantee protection from domain name sniping; no one can.

To protect your investment, domain registration should be paid for at the time the domain is ordered, and the payment must have time to process. It might be a good strategy to buy the desired domain name before purchasing hosting for that domain.

How Can My Domain Name Get Sniped?

There are plenty of ways that a domain can be obtained through sniping. Some of the most common methods are listed below.

  • It is possible someone else registered the domain name before you did, and the domain still showed as available when checking the availability.
  • It often happens that someone orders a domain registration but does not render payment immediately. In that case, anyone else can register the domain name and get it before you do.
  • It is also possible after searching for available domain names at another website that registers domains. Some of these registrars are not ethical and have been known to steal domain ideas and then auction the domain back for a much higher price.
Remember: You can trust HostGator to never snipe any domains queried. We are a reputable registrar, and we will stay that way. Feel free to use our tools and services to search for your potential domain names.

How to Prevent Domain Sniping

Fortunately, ICANN does attempt to discourage this practice by limiting the number of domain name refunds that are allowed by a registrar. If the domain cannot be refunded, then the corrupt registrar is less likely to risk their money.

We strongly recommend using hostgator.com/domains to search for available domain names to avoid domain sniping.

LaunchPad Domain Registration

LaunchPad is HostGator's own domain registrar. Any domains registered during the initial account set up of Shared and Reseller plans will be part of this system. LaunchPad also allows you to purchase domain names directly at hostgator.com/domains.