Free Domains

Free domains are a great addition to your product offerings that can incentivize your customers to sign up for longer terms. For example, you might want to offer a free domain for purchasing a hosting plan with an annual billing cycle.

In WHMCS, free domains are domains that:

  • Are in a bundle with a paid service that has specific payment terms.
  • Do not incur additional costs as part of that bundle.

You can offer free domains by configuring them for the corresponding product at Configuration () > System Settings > Products/Services.

Offer Free Domains

To offer a free domain with a product:

  1. Go to Configuration () > System Settings > Products/Services.
  2. Click the edit icon next to the desired product or service.
  3. Go to the Free Domain tab.
  4. Check Free Domain to offer a free domain with this package.
  5. Select the payment terms (or billing cycles) that you want to offer the free domain with.
    • The product’s Next Due Date value and payment gateway must match the domain name’s. If the Next Due Date value changes, the domain renews as free for the client automatically.
    • We recommend the following settings when you offer free domains:
      • Disable Sync Next Due Date in the Domains tab at Configuration () > General Settings.
      • Ensure that Domain Settings is blank in the Advanced Settings for Invoice Generation at Configuration () > System Settings > Automation Settings.
      • Disable Separate Invoices in the client’s profile.
    • Press Ctrl when clicking the options to select more than one.
  6. Select the TLDs that the free domain offer applies to. This allows you to exclude high-priced TLDs. Press Ctrl when clicking the options to select more than one.
  7. Click Save Changes.

Your product will not charge the user for the domain when they order it with the billing cycle that you specified. Customers will see the free domain correctly on the checkout page.

Cancellations

If a client cancels the hosting package, the domain name will automatically revert to your regular pricing.

Renewals

The system registers free domains for one year. Free domains with a biennial or triennial product will renew automatically after the first or second year as appropriate. You can find these settings in the Domains tab at Configuration () > System Settings > General Settings.

In WHMCS 8.2 and later, WHMCS prevents customers from paying to renew domains that are eligible for free renewal with a paid product or service. Additionally, WHMCS prevents renewal of free domains in the Client Area if they are not in a bundle with a product or service.

Renewal Reminders

In WHMCS 8.2, we added a Free Domain Reminders setting to Configuration () > System Settings > Automation Settings. It lets you generate and send renewal reminders for domains that are in a bundle with an associated product or service. The frequency with which WHMCS will send these domain renewal reminders depends on your Renewal Notice settings.

  • For existing installations upgrading to WHMCS 8.2, this is disabled by default.
  • For new installations of WHMCS 8.2 and later, this is enabled by default.

In WHMCS 8.2 and higher:

  • You cannot renew domains individually through the Client Area if they are eligible for free renewal with a product or service.
  • You can choose whether to send free domain renewal notices. For more information, see Domain Renewal Notices.

If you don’t enable this, WHMCS will only send renewal reminders for domains that aren’t bundled with an associated product or service.

Last modified: June 5, 2024