Transferring a Google Workspace Subscription From a Reseller
To summarize: if you want to transfer your Google Workspace subscription from a reseller (e.g. Domain.com) not to another reseller but to Google, the reseller needs to stop providing the subscription from their end. Google will then email you a warning and you can set up billing. There is no token involved, only a conversation with the reseller. (Remember to set up the MX records once it’s done.)
The full story
I just had a bit of a confusing experience, so I thought I’d document it for anyone else in the same boat. My situation was:
- I registered a domain with Domain.com.
- I activated a Google Workspace subscription for that domain.
- Later, I transferred the domain to another registrar, but…
- Domain.com kept the subscription for the Google Workspace.
- I wanted to move the Google Workspace subscription away from Domain.com.
To start with, I told Domain.com’s support rep I wanted to transfer my Workspace subscription. They gave me a transfer token and told me I needed to create a new Workspace subscription to transfer it to, so I created one with a different domain (since the one I wanted to transfer was being used for the current subscription) and spent 10 minutes examining the Google Admin Console to find where it goes.
Eventually, Google Help Assistant led me to a page which just said you need to contact your reseller to transfer a subscription to Google, so I headed to Domain.com again and wound up speaking to the same rep as before. They told me to just enter the code. Rather than argue, I asked where and shared a screenshot through their convoluted pastebin method. The rep told me to go to ‘Add user’, at which point I realized they wanted me to log into the Admin Console for the new subscription.
I switched accounts and hit ‘Add user’ again. Now the rep told me to enter the name of the existing user. I asked if they were sure this would transfer the user—to which they replied it was just a matter of deleting the existing user on their end, not on Google’s end, and re-added it—and then clarified that I was in the new subscription with a different domain. There was a pause. They asked if the domain was different. I said yes, since the one I want to transfer was in use.
We were clearly have difficulty communicating, so I provided a quick summary of the situation to remove any confusion. The rep disconnected. Another rep replaced them, pretending there were network difficulties.
Somewhere in between the disconnection and reconnection, however, I got an email from Google:
Set up billing for Google Workspace Business Starter
Your Google Workspace Business Starter subscription for is no longer provided to you through your reseller, and you don't yet have a billing plan set up directly with Google or with another reseller.
As the new rep (supposedly) reviewed the conversation, I told them I had received this email, and asked them to wait while I tried to set up billing. It worked. I thanked them, left, and successfully configured my MX records.
- Which I know now is only required for reseller-to-reseller transfers.↩