Google Domains no longer offers new registrations; customers continue to use Google Domains until transition.
Website-building platform Squarespace (NYSE: SQSP) has completed its acquisition of Google Domains (NASDAQ: GOOGL) for $180 million.
The company announced the surprising acquisition in June. Many competing registrars in the domain business were surprised by the announcement, and it appears that Google didn’t shop the deal to many parties. Some registrars also told me that the acquisition price was low.
Starting today, Google no longer allows new registrations and instead points people to Squarespace. Existing customers will continue to manage their domains at Google Domains for a transition period that could last several months.
Squarespace already has a large domain registrar, with about one million .com domains under management. But Google Domains has close to 10 million domains across all extensions, turning Squarespace into one of the largest domain registrars overnight.
Most of the existing domains at Squarespace are registered by customers of Squarespace’s other services. Squarespace said it intends to make Squarespace Domains an independent domain registrar that attracts registrants outside of just its website customers.
That will probably require a pricing change. Squarespace currently charges $20 per year for most domains. Google Domains charged $12 per year.
Squarespace will honor Google Domains prices for existing customers for at least one year.
Rival site-building platform WordPress is offering free transfers from Google Domains to try to win over customers.
I suspect most Google Domains registrants still aren’t aware of this transaction and will find out about it the next time they log into Google Domains or when their domain moves to Squarespace’s platform.