In order to use a traditional domain, you must pay annual renewal fees for the right to rent it. The renewal fees are subject to change and often times are driven by ICANN and then registrars — ICANN actually just tried removing price caps on the protected .org TLD. Furthermore, if a website is accidentally determined to be harmful, internet service providers can block it, and domain registrars can seize the domain — Susam Pal recently had his domain name of twelve years seized from him when an outside organization accidentally flagged his domain name in their security operation — and the process to reinstate ownership is painful and costly.
Handshake domain names provide true ownership, which means there are no yearly renewal fees. As long as Handshake top-level domain (TLD) owners control their private keys, and since the DNS records are on-chain, their names are resistant to seizure and tampering. TLD owners do need to submit a biennial transaction (only the mining fee) to prove they still have access to their key, otherwise the name will go back into the "auction-able names" pile. However if you use Namebase then you don't need to worry about submitting these transactions because our system does this automatically for you.
Today if you want to use a domain name, you’d go to a registrar like GoDaddy or Google Domains to search for and rent a second-level domain name from your preferred TLD. If your domain name is available, you'll be able to rent it at a price that is determined by the registrar. If your domain name is already taken, you'll need to reach out to a broker and the cost to acquire the domain may be in hundreds of thousands of dollars. It will also be unclear what your broker got paid for it and whether you paid a fair price.
Handshake has a transparent auction-based marketplace where anyone can bid on available domain names, and the name is awarded to the highest bidder who pays the second-highest bidding price — it's entirely possible for the auction to have only one bid, in which case the name is awarded to the sole bidder for free. Also rather than having an intermediary like Godaddy charge a broker fee, you can bid directly against other bidders to determine the fair market value of the domain. If the name auction is already over, you'll still be able to buy it from the Namebase marketplace.