Register a Cheap Blog Domain with Google

Social media 'blog' key on keyboard
Peter Dazeley / Getty Images

Google used to offer cheap domain registration as part of Blogger. That was replaced with a more comprehensive domain registration service called Google Domains. It's much easier than using GoDaddy. 

A lot of Web hosting services already offer easy "go buy a domain" buttons when you sign up for an account, but you find that you need to change settings in a complicated third-party dashboard to get everything to work properly.

Google Domains is easy and inexpensive. 

If you don't want to use Blogger, Google is working with ShopifySquarespaceWeebly, and Wix, all of which are companies that create easy website hosting solutions for people or businesses that don't want to get into the weeds with learning how to code. 

Domain registrations start at $12 and include private registration. Some domains are more expensive than $12, such as .ninja or .io. Speaking of which, Google Domains offers a lot of different domain endings. This is a necessity since the world is running out of top level domains like .com, .net, and .org. There are a bunch of new endings available, like .today and .guru. 

Google Domains offers up to 100 branded email addresses that forward to existing addresses (so your_name@fake_comany_name would forward to your_name@existing_gmail_address for example) This isn't the same as having a custom email address from your domain, but it's close enough for most people.

Google has a separate business service called Google Apps for Work that offers email service for your custom domain, but they charge per user. 

You can create quick domain forwards using Google Domains. That's when you point your domain to an existing address. This is useful if you've got a website hosted on Etsy or some other service and want your own domain to redirect to it.

 

You can have up to 100 subdomains. This means you can separate off the "www" part of your domain and use it to forward to something else, like "blogs.my_fake_company.com" and "shop.my_fake_company.com" That way you can use a lot of different services but have them all tied to the same branded domain. 

Many registrars have terrible and clunky tools that confuse beginners. Google Domains has a clean interface and easy to use tools for common tasks. 

What if You Already Own a Domain and Want Blogger?

If you already registered a domain from someone other than Google Domains, you can point it to your Blogger blog. You won't get a discount on the domain you've already registered, and you won't get the ease of instantly having all the settings pre-configured for Blogger, but you can still get a hosted blog on a server you don't have to maintain or pay a hosting fee to rent. 

Unfortunately, Google's instructions for redirecting the domain are rather technical if you're unfamiliar with the back end of a registrar and words like  "A-Records" and "CNAMES" sound like a foreign language.  They have instructions that work for GoDaddy domains, but you may have to ask your registrar for support.