Skip to main content
  • .CA domains

A web builders guide to .CA domains

Are you a web developer who is wondering whether you should encourage your clients to get a .CA or a .com domain?

In this guide, we’ll show you why it’s important for your Canadian clients to get a .CA for their website, the benefits of .CA domain, plus everything you need to know about getting one for your client.

Chapter 1: Why should my clients get a .CA domain?

Why get a .CA domain?

  • A domain name protects your clients’ brand. By encouraging your clients to secure their .CA domain name early, it reserves and protects their business name. This prevents others from claiming the domain name they want and reselling it for a high price.
  • A domain name shows that their Canadian business is safe, credible and trusted.
  • A domain name helps improve SEO. The right domain name can help your clients target certain audiences and rank better on Google.

Benefits of .CA Domains

One way your clients can attract Canadians to their business is to choose a .CA domain for their website. Here’s a few reasons why: 

1. The Canadian connection

The .CA domain name means the business is 100% Canadian, because in order to register a .CA domain, individuals, businesses or organizations must meet CIRA’s Canadian Presence Requirements.

2. User preference

Canadians are 4x more likely to prefer .CA than .com websites for shopping when they have a choice.* *Strategic Counsel, 2020

3. Shopping 

A .CA domain tells customers that:

  • …you charge in CAD dollars
  • …you ship to Canada
  • …you pay and collect Canadian taxes

4. SEO advantage 

Using a .CA domain means Canadian businesses see an increase in search. For searches in Canada about Canadian topics, search engines like Google tend to favour local results which can lead to increased website traffic and leads.

5. Trust 

.CA is an established top-level domain and recognized as a safe, secure and trusted resource for Canadians. CIRA has been managing the registry since 2000. 5 reasons why Canadians trust .CA domains

6. Availability 

Avoid Your client may have a better chance of getting the domain name they really want with a .CA. Curious if your client’s business name is available? Use our search tool to see if your client’s domain name is available as a .CA.

A .CA domain declares your business is proudly Canadian


Cost of .CA domains

Are .CA’s more expensive then .com? Why are there so many different pricing options? Can I get a free domain? Learn more about the cost of .CA domains and how to ensure your clients are getting a good deal. 


Avoid free domain extensions offered by web building platforms

Most of the big DIY website builders offer free plans. You can even get a domain name, but it will look something like this:



If your clients want to share their website, blog, or ecommerce store with the world, the risk of relying on these free subdomains could mean losing creditability from their website visitors and potential customers. Compare that to a more professional and simple domain like,

Chapter 2: How to buy a .CA and more

Who should register the .CA and how is it done?

Business owners should register their domain themselves, using their contact information.  This gives your client full control over managing the domain. Purchasing a .CA domain is quick and easy. Learn how to advise your client on registering a .CA with a certified registrar.

Tips when registering a .CA 

Shop around

Make sure to advise your clients to shop around when it comes to getting a .CA. Registrars may offer bundles, packages, or special promotions. Keep in mind that cheapest isn’t always best.

Check references

clients should seek out customer reviews and testimonials, and ask friends or colleagues for a recommendation. If you have experience with registrars, I’m sure you could provide some advice too!

Transfer a domain

If a registrar is not meeting your client’s needs or if they would like to manage all their domain names through one registrar, they can transfer their .CA domain name to another registrar.

Redirect a domain

Your clients should seek out customer reviews and testimonials, and ask friends or colleagues for a recommendation. If you have experience with registrars, I’m sure you could provide some advice too!

If your client has a .com or a domain name with alternative spellings in American English, you can forward them to their .CA website address. Most registrars give step-by-step instructions on how to do this, and some offer plugins to connect your client’s .CA domain in a matter of seconds.

Read CIRA’s blog on .CA domains, cybersecurity and more.

Read our blog to stay up to date on .CA domains, gather insight on cybersecurity and learn more about the state of the Internet in Canada.
Read our blog

Chapter 3: About CIRA

Hello from Ottawa! We’re the Canadian Internet Registration Authority — but you can call us CIRA. We’re the folks who manage the .CA domain name registry on behalf of all Canadians.

We’re a not-for-profit, member-based organization that that is helping build a better online Canada.

Keep in touch

Questions? Comments? Polite remarks?

Twitter    Facebook    LinkedIn    CIRA Blog