Easily.co.uk is one of the largest domain name registrars and web hosting companies in the UK. Founded in 1999 as EasyWebNames.com by a company called WebConsultancy, Easily pioneered the idea of offering low-cost domain names at a time when other providers were charging almost ten times as much for the same services.
Today Easily is owned by internet conglomerate NetNames Group, which encompasses an assortment of businesses offering things online brand protection, domain name services, and SSL certificate sales.
Easily still maintains a focus on low-cost solutions, including domain name registration, web services, and web hosting, aimed at UK businesses and consumers looking to get their web presence started. Easily’s goal is to prioritize site reliability and to back everything they sell with first-class customer support (and a money-back guarantee if you’re unsatisfied).
Despite the company’s focus on the UK market, made all the more apparent by the inclusion of 20% VAT on their products and services and the hours during which you can reach their London-based support team, Easily servers over 100,000 customers in 150 countries around the world.
- Domain Names
- Email Services
- Web Hosting
- Creating Your Website
- Build an eShop
- Choosing Between Website Creator and Easilyshop
- Search Engine Submission Service
- Affiliate Program
- Technical Assistance and Customer Support
- Is Easily Right for Your Company?
Easily got their start by offering low-cost domains when other registrars were charging ten times as much. Today, they still offer robust domain registration services.
If you don’t already own a domain, you can purchase one from Easily. In addition to offering you many options for your domain name, you can choose from hundreds of different extensions, such as
If you already own a domain name, you can transfer it to Easily for free and pay only the fees required to extend the renewal date for your domain. If there is any time left on your domain name contract with your existing provider, Easily will cover the fees. Furthermore, you’ll get free web forwarding, email forwarding, and DNS management, so your visitors will be able to reach you even though you’ve moved.
Regardless of which option you choose, the fees you’ll pay for a one-year registration is displayed as soon as you make a selection. Note that all prices shown are exclusive of 20% VAT.
Finally, during checkout, you have the option of adding email inboxes, the Easily Website Creator tool, or both to your domain name purchase.
You’ll be required to register and pay the appropriate fees for your domain on an annual basis.
Up until February 2014, there were only a handful of domain extensions available, such as
.net. Since then, hundreds of new extensions have become available, such as
.bike. Easily offers you the ability to choose from over 150 domain extensions, so given the proliferation of websites on the internet, you’re likelier to get a domain name that fits your organization.
Easily offers standalone email services. This allows you to purchase email inboxes using a custom domain that you can access anywhere. All email packages come with anti-virus and anti-spam protection to keep junk mail, viruses, and other threats away from you, as well as a calendar, contacts list management, tasks lists, notes, and information management tools.
You can choose from four different pre-configured email service packages. They primarily differ regarding the amount of space you have to store your emails, as well as the maximum size attachment you can send. The premium packages, however, also come with the ability to forward email to another account.
Easily offers a variety of shared, Linux- or Windows-based plans from which you can choose. Regardless of which plan you choose, all plans come standard with the following:
- Unlimited bandwidth (as long as your site isn’t impacting the ability for others’ websites to function at the high level Easily expects them to)
- Easy-to-use control panel to manage your site and hosting (including easy upgrades if you ever find your current plan too limited)
- 1-click WordPress install (as well as support for Joomla and Drupal).
Easily also monitors your site around-the-clock to ensure that your site is online and that there aren’t any issues with the server that’s hosting your site.
If you have a site hosted by another provider, Easily will help you transfer your data over for free.
Easily offers three different Linux-based hosting plans. They differ primarily regarding the disk space you’re allocated and the number of databases you get.
The Linux plans also offer support for phpMyAdmin, PHP4, and Perl.
Easily offers three different Windows-based hosting plans. Similar to the Linux-based plans, the Windows plans differ primarily in the amount of disk space you’re allocated.
The operating system on your server is Windows Server 2008 R2, and you get support for the following versions of the .NET Framework: 4.5, 4.0, 3.5, 2.0, 1.0. Windows plans also support ASP, PHP5 and media created using Adobe Flash.
Pricing and Billing
The prices listed are what you would pay for a one-year contract (exclusive of 20% VAT). There are no setup fees associated with any of the plans, but note that none come with a domain name. You’ll need to purchase or transfer a domain to Easily before you can use any of their web hosting options.
Creating Your Website
One of the add-ons you can purchase when registering a domain name with Easily is the Website Creator.
The Website Creator allows you to create a professional-looking website if you don’t have any technical experience with design or web development. You’ll also receive instructions on how to upload the website to your hosting account. To get started you simply select a pre-built design template (Easily offers you a hundred to choose from), choose the style and color, edit the text, and save your changes. You don’t need to worry about writing any code — what you see in the editor is what you will see when your site is live on the internet.
There are several Website Creator packages that you can choose from, but all include easy integration of a multimedia archive/gallery, image and Flash media editing features, search engine optimization (SEO), a Flash-based intro/landing page, visitor counter, a guestbook, and a blog.
The primary differences between the packages are in the number of pages you can create for your site.
- Limited: The Limited package allows you to create up to 8 different pages for your site.
- Starter: The Starter package allows you to create up to 10 different pages.
- Advanced: The Advanced package allows you to create up to 25 different pages.
- Full: The Full package allows you to create an unlimited number of pages.
- E-commerce: The E-commerce package allows you to create an unlimited number of pages, choose from 250 templates, and use of business-related domain extensions, such as
Pricing and Billing
All prices listed are for a one-year subscription to the Website Creator (exclusive of 20% VAT). You cannot, however, purchase Website Creator as a stand-alone product — it must be purchased along with an Easily domain.
It’s also worth noting that you’ll have to pay for an individual instance of the Website Creator for each domain you have with Easily.
Build an eShop
For small businesses who want to get started with an ecommerce store, the Easily Shop features give you a host of e-commerce-related features that make it easy to do so.
Because you have over 100 templates to choose from, you don’t need to know HTML to build the storefront you need to display your products attractively. Furthermore, the sites have been coded with search engine optimization in mind, and you can easily integrate with eBay to expand the reach of your business. You also get tools that make digital payments easy to manage, as well as packing slip creation and automatic invoicing.
To use Easilyshop, you must have a domain registered with Easily (which is not included with any of the Easilyshop packages).
There are three different eShop options for you to choose from:
- Easilyshop Personal: With Easilyshop Personal, you can add up to 300 products across 50 pages/categories, and accept twelve types of payments securely.
- Easilyshop Professional: Easilyshop Professional allows you to add up to 1000 products over 100 pages/categories, take 13 types of payments securely, mobile-ready optimizations, the ability to sell downloads and cross-selling tools to extend the pool of sellers who see your site.
- Easilyshop Premium: Easilyshop Premium is very similar to Professional, but you can add up to 5000 products across 500 pages/categories and accept 14 different payment types securely.
If you need additional marketing features such as newsletter creation or the ability to support vouchers, coupons, or promotions, you should opt for one of the higher level packages.
Easilyshop is billed annually, and prices listed are exclusive of 20% VAT.
Choosing Between Website Creator and Easilyshop
Easily’s Website Creator and Easilyshop are add-on services you can purchase when you register a new domain with or transfer an existing domain to Easily. They are mutually exclusive products, however, so if you purchase one, you do not need to purchase the other.
For those who seek to create a site that is strictly informative, the Website Creator is a better option. If you plan on selling products or services then Easilyshop is a better fit.
Search Engine Submission Service
When you purchase a new domain name, your site isn’t automatically indexed; you’ll have to submit your site for inclusion.
Because submitting your site to all of the major search engines can be cumbersome, Easily offers the Search Engine Submission Service. For a flat annual rate, Easily will submit your site to over 400 search engines on a monthly basis, track your rankings and display your stats on your control panel, and provide you with the information you need to make sure that you’re using the best possible search terms on your site.
Easily has partnered up with Affiliate Window to provide commissions to those whose referrals end up purchasing services from Easily. Commissions begin at 8.5% and rise to 12% for normal monthly sales. They also offer monthly specials that allow affiliates to earn even more.
If you’re interested in discussing other possible partnerships, you can contact their affiliate manager for additional details.
Technical Assistance and Customer Support
Easily’s self-help resources include detailed guides on their products that you can search through and a knowledgebase.
Easily mentions that you can reach their London-based support team 24/7, but reading the fine print indicates that this means you can email the team 24/7. On their System Status page, there is a list of times when you expect to receive a response to your questions:
- Telephone and email support is available from 9 am to 5:30 pm (GMT+1), Monday through Friday.
- Email support is only available from 9 am to 12:45 pm (GMT+1) on Saturdays and Sundays.
Furthermore, they offer limited hours for email support if there’s a bank holiday.
The discrepancy is quite confusing, but suffice to say, if you’re going to be in need of around-the-clock support, you’re probably not going to get it from Easily.
One of the downsides to shared hosting plans is related to security. Because all aspects of the server are shared among many sites, something that affects one site can easily affect another site. Easily, however, has attempted to mitigate such risks by taking security seriously. In addition to continuously scanning the sites they host and their servers for malware and malicious activity Easily keeps the bare minimum of data on their servers (and no credit card details ever).
Furthermore, Easily participates in the ISIS Safe Shopping program, which means that their secure payment pages are checked continuously and is PCI-DSS compliant. (This means that they meet industry standards regarding how they handle sensitive credit card information).
Easily backs their products and services with a money-back guarantee. If you cancel your purchase within 30 days, you’ll receive a full refund of all fees paid.
The guarantee, however, does not apply to the following:
- Upgrades and renewals
- Limited-time special offers and promotions offered by Easily
- Domain name registrations
- Products and services offered in partnership, such as the Search Engine Submission Service and AVG Internet Security.
Is Easily Right for Your Company?
Easily offers a host of options that you can mix and match to get the web services package that best fits your needs. Their low-cost offerings, however, are best for small- to medium-sized businesses looking to get started with e-commerce. Larger businesses (or small businesses who already see higher traffic levels and transaction volumes would do best to look elsewhere).
Easily is very clear about what you get with your purchase. They are one of the few providers who list annual fees, instead of listing monthly fees that you have to pay for upfront on an annual basis. Additionally, they offer you the option to build your package by adding only the products and services you want to your cart. The company does not bundle everything together and force you to pay for things you don’t need just to get the features that you do want.
While Easily makes it easy to upgrade from the lower-tiered packages to their higher-tiered packages, they do not offer any VPS or dedicated hosting services. Those who outgrow their shared hosting plan will have to seek hosting from another provider when this happens. Consider that other providers who offer a variety of hosting options let their customers upgrade to a different type of service (for example, from a shared plan to a VPS plan) with just a few clicks in their control panel.
Finally, Easily’s support offerings are somewhat limited when compared to those of their peers. The company, somewhat disingenuously, claims that they offer 24/7 support, but what this means is that you can email them 24/7. The hours during which their London-based support team is limited (and even more so on the weekends or holidays). If you see an outage or face an issue Friday night, it could easily be two or more days before you get your questions answered or your issues attended to by a support team. For those who are hosting e-commerce sites that do online sales, this can lead to a serious decrease in revenue and loss of trust in your company by your customers.
All those caveats aside Easily is a solid provider of low-cost, high-value shared hosting for smaller businesses or those who see a lighter level of traffic.