Network Solutions Can’t Multiply and Has Secret Pricing

When Husband started doing freelance work he set up a website for the business. We were referred by a friend to Network Solutions for our domain name and we purchased our domain name for five years. We did not shop around for price. At the time I didn’t completely understand or trust this whole web thing so I wanted to go with a company based a trusted referral.

Since then I’ve learned a great deal, but am an expert in no one’s eyes, especially my own. I know just enough to get myself in trouble.

Our domain registration is up this month, and Network Solutions haws been e-mailing me to remind me to renew. The e-mail included the renewal prices:

  • 1 year $34.99/yr
  • 2 years $29.99/yr
  • 3 years $24.99/yr
  • 5 years $19.99/yr
  • 100 years $9.99/yr

I was not impressed. Last year we signed up for a virtual server so we could do our own web hosting for ourselves and our clients. The prices for domain names with the company we use is far less than Network Solutions charges. A one year registration is only $14.95 for the year. Additional years are only $1 less, so we decided to switch the registration to our server company for one year.

I needed to contact Network Solutions to get an authorization code to complete the transfer. I had no issue with making the call as it’s a good protection against domain theft. Before I called, though, I wanted to see if Network Solutions would offer me the same price on their website. So I went to their website, signed into my account and started the process to get a price on a domain.

I was surprised to see:

Domain Name Price Keep my information private $9.00/year

Huh. $9.00 a year? That’s much less than the $34.99 my renewal reminder offered. And notice there’s no asterisk pointing me to a disclaimer about that price… I thought perhaps it was a deal they offered when a client added a second domain.

I called Network Solutions and spoke to a very pleasant girl who informed me that the $9.00/year was for a 100 year registration and that I would discover that fact “later in the registration process”. While on the telephone with her I went further into the registration process and had to move three pages ahead before they were forced to tell me that:

Your Order Includes
Your Price
Domain Name: 100 Year Domain Service* $999.00 REMOVE

Of course I had to use the drop down menu to see the single year price:

Your Order Includes
Your Price
Domain Name: 1 Year $34.99 REMOVE

I have problems with this type of deceptive pricing, most of which I don’t need to explain to you.

And really. Can they not even multiply? Last time I checked 100 X $9.00 = $900.

I decided not even to get into it with the girl on the phone. I was going to be good. I wasn’t in the mood for a confrontation. I just informed her I was transferring my service and asked for the code.

Then she made me a “special offer” to renew my registration for only $15.00 for the year.

Oh really? Why wasn’t I offered this already? “Well,” she replied, “because you called. On the phone.”


I told her the same thing I tell car dealers and finance managers when they initially offer me a higher interest rate than I could get on my own and then, after being informed of the lower rate I had already secured on my own, offer to meet the lower rate.

“I don’t do business that way,” I told the Network Solutions girl. “If you aren’t willing to offer me the lowest rate from the start then you don’t deserve my business.”

The Consumerist is going to love this one. I think I have my first submission.

And Network Solutions has one less client.

The Bottom Line: Make sure you’re getting the best available price. Today that means checking the website and calling.


9 Responses to “Network Solutions Can’t Multiply and Has Secret Pricing”

  1. Tipper Says:

    I went through this exact thing one time when I was going to cancel my expensive long distance service for a cheaper one. After I called to switch- then they wanted to offer the same price I was changing for.

  2. Adam Says:

    Networksolutions will match any other deal on the web if you can them on the phone. You can get $9.99/year, one year at a time if you call.

  3. Janice Says:

    Wow! I am researching purchasing a domain name right now, and this is VERY helpful…thank you!

  4. weisen Says:

    The $9/yr you show is for their private registration service, which is why it says “keep my information private”. It’s a $9/yr optional add-on and has nothing to do with the cost of the domain registration.

    • joe Says:

      1.5 years later, I’m here to echo the info that weisen provided. This whole article was pointless… Your complaint is completely out of context… The $9 is for the optional private registration service. The $34.99 is for the domain renewal. You had to intentionally change the years to 100 in the shopping cart in order to bring up the 100 year price, yet you show that as if it was what was in your cart when you arrived at that point of the transaction, and that is simply 100% fabrication on your part. It was on the single year, then you changed it to 100 years… Then told the story as if it was the other way around. When you arrived at your cart, it showed the $9 private registration fee on one item line, and the $34.99 domain renewal fee on another item line. You are either stupid, or have quite the agenda against Network Solutions. I have no love for them. I had a 10 year registration that is expiring in less than a week, and I’m ticked off at their high renewal cost, but I’ve put it off to long and will probably just pay it at this point. I’m not using the website, but I don’t want to just let it go. So I’m not here on their behalf, but only here to say that it is shameful that you have distorted the truth to the extent that you have, regardless of whether it is right of them to charge such a high renewal cost. Complain about the high cost, but don’t make up lies about them not being able to multiply or having secret pricing. It’s all right there for you in the checkout process, and the private registration fee is another thing altogether, so the whole “multiplying” thing that you referred to makes as much sense as comparing the cost of 1 gallon of gas to 1/10th of the cost of 10 gallons of milk. It makes no sense, in other words.

  5. Dave Says:

    Network Solutions is RIFE with deceptive practices… Making sure you buy any of their many endless “added value” services by mistake during any domain purchasing. Their user experience is carefully designed to make sure you don’t notice you have left a and expensive checkbox checked somewhere, and if you do, not being able to uncheck by going back in your browser. They are among the worst online commerce sites I have encountered… they remind me of Real Player business practices of yesteryear and I wish them the same fate.

  6. DS Says:

    They all are like this. You really have to watch what you click when buying anything on these sites. Both Network Solutions and GoDaddy are the worst. I just had to renew a domain on Network Solutions, the online renewal price was $34.99. I called them to inquire about moving my Domain to Go-Daddy… they dropped the renewal price to $7.95/year! So – it’s worth calling vs. trying to weave through the online crap they present.

  7. Erik Says:

    Give them a call or chat with a rep online and you can save on prices. i just got a quoted for 20yrs @ $199

  8. Sal Grippaldi Says:

    What’s my story? I was renewing online….One year for $37.99 when I ran into a glitch so I called. On the phone I said I wanted a one year subscription and they quoted me $11.95!! Where they got this price from I don’t know but it was genuine.

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