updated 07:32 pm EDT, Mon June 23, 2014
Search giant plays with the idea of a domain registration services for small business
As is Google tradition, another feature it is testing was recently released to the public while still in a beta phase. Google, recognizing the need for businesses to start an online presence with a website, is jumping into the domain registration business with Google Domains. Starting with a small test group, Google is exploring the customer needs that can be fulfilled through the service.
Google is looking to make Google Domains widely available soon, but it's focusing now on the features that roll out when it goes live. All of the features apply to domains that are transferred to or purchased through Google's new service. One of the biggest features so far is the fact that Google won't charge people an extra fee for a private registration. The cost of keeping user information private is covered by the company, but it notes that not all domain endings support private registration.
With each domain, the service comes with the ability to add up to 100 sub-domains. Email forwarding is included as well, allowing the creation of 100 aliases for a domain. These aliases can forward to existing email accounts. Google Domains covers some standard features many website owners are already familiar with, such as domain forwarding. As new domain endings surface, Google says it will support them.
While Google won't host the websites associated with the domains, users can take advantage of the company's DNS servers. In terms of DNS population, there are few companies with the same sort of centralized, quick setup. Domains offers tech support on weekdays from 9AM to 9PM EST for those needing help.
Those that need a fully-functional website, but lack the know-how, can look forward to teaming up with one of the featured website builders through Domains. Shopify, Wix.com, Squarespace and Weebly webpage-building services are available for an additional fee.
Even though Google Domains is in the building stage, interested people can still look at the site. However, Google requires an activation code to access its features. If users search for a domain, they are given the option to request an invite into the small sampling pool.