Guide to the Ancestry DNA test


23 April 2021
Is the Ancestry DNA test right for me? Read on to find out what this DNA kit offers for family history.

What are the benefits of Ancestry's DNA test? What does it offer that other tests don't? 

Autosomal DNA tests are the most useful for doing your family history and discovering unknown parentage, making the Ancestry DNA test a good choice. But is it right for you?

Read on for five top benefits:

1. Database size of 15M+, giving you lots of potential matches

A 15 million+ database of people who have taken an Ancestry DNA test gives you a huge pool of potential matches. Because cousin matching is a numbers game, a test provider with a large database is more likely to give you potential matches with people with whom you share ancestors in common.

2. A unique Thrulines™ feature that allows you to discover how you and a potential match might be related

Thrulines™ is a DNA tool exclusive to Ancestry that uses information from family trees within its database to work out how you and a match might be related.

Tools such as this are an important reason to attach a family tree to your DNA test results, so that you - and any potential matches - can start to work out which ancestors you may share. 

3. Build an online Ancestry family tree or upload a Gedcom file

Ancestry is a hugely popular genealogy website and home to millions of family trees from people around the world. It's easy to build a tree on the site from scratch, or you can upload a Gedcom file to save you inputting all the details if you have your tree stored elsewhere.

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Being able to move easily between your family tree and your Ancestry DNA test results and matches makes finding new ancestors and DNA cousins a much simpler process. Having your tree on Ancestry also means that both potential DNA and non-DNA (ie via your online tree) will be able to contact you.

4. Message possible matches via Ancestry's messenger system

The secure Ancestry messenger system allows you to contact possible DNA cousins via the Ancestry platform, without having to reveal your DNA address. You can also easily refer back to the messages and contacts if you need to.

5. Regularly updated ethnicity estimates, including Genetic Communities ™, showing Ancestry DNA members who are connected via their DNA

Ancestry's ethnicity estimates are updated a few times a year - the more people who join the database, the more accurate these estimates become. Although your DNA never changes, the science behind it does. 

The ethnicity estimates page gives you a map with your DNA regions and you can use the information panels to find out more about each country or region. 

For more on the test, visit Ancestry DNA.

Click here for Family Tree's DNA test comparison page.