To register a domain, you can work with registrars such as Google Domains. Google Domains works with registries such as Google Registry to acquire domain names for individuals and companies.
How a registrar and a registry differ:
- Registrar: An organization that manages the registration of domain names for one or more Top-Level Domain (TLD) registries.
- Registry: An organization that manages the administrative data for the TLD domains and subdomains under its authority, such as the zone files that contain addresses of the name servers for each domain.
A registrant is the registered holder of a domain. A registrant holds the "rights" to a domain for the duration of the registration period. A domain's registration can be renewed indefinitely, up to 10 years at a time. A registrant is considered the "owner" of the domain.
Google Domains is a registrar. A registrar works with a registrant, or the owner of a domain, and a registry.
- Sell domain names
- Provide registration services
- Offer other value-added services applicable to domains
InterNIC maintains a directory of accredited registrars at www.internic.com/regist.html.
Registration is the process whereby a registrant registers a domain with a registrar. A registrant can register a domain for a period from 1 to 10 years. When the registration period expires, the registrant can renew or extend the registration. The registrant must provide contact information to the registrar for inclusion in the WHOIS database.
A registry is a database that contains registrant information for the second-level domains (google.com, example.com) beneath a given top-level domain (.com).
A registry operator is an organization that maintains the administrative data for one or more top-level or lower-level domains. For example, Verisign is responsible for several top-level domains, including the .com, .net, and .name domains. A registry operator is given authority to operate a top-level domain through ICANN.
Learn more about the role of registries in your domain name registration.