Domain names: the focal point of the Internet. There is no doubt that there are three large domains consisting of .com, .org and .net. These three reign supreme. For more than 30 years, these domain extensions have been used to host some of the most recognized websites on the Internet. But with each passing year, these three popular domains get closer and closer to their digital transience. This is due to the increasing unavailability of these domains, as well as the emergence of more creative, contemporary and highly flexible alternatives.
In the early days of the Internet, like the 90s and 2000s, you could only choose from these three “point” domain extensions. This small selection group made the options highly sought after by default and tolerably iconic in their own right. But like all icons of the 90s and 2000s, its relevance fades with each passing year. However, despite this fact, these domains, the .com in particular, remain an option for many entrepreneurs who are about to launch their next company. And you can’t blame them. When we envision successful websites, almost everyone seems to use one of these three domains as their home on the web – think Amazon.com, Wikipedia.org, and SpeedTest.net.
“Sorry … that domain is not available.”
Most entrepreneurs have spent hours, days, or weeks thinking of new business names. They then enter their ideas on GoDaddy and come across a message that says, “Sorry … that domain is not available.” The immense popularity of the big three domain extensions has resulted in fewer and fewer web addresses, with those extensions available. As a result, these domain extensions can no longer do what they once did effortlessly: set a memorable address on the web.
It is very similar to real estate; people who arrive early to the game get the best option. With VeriSign reports from the domain registrar more than 360 million domain registrations Only at the end of the first quarter of last year, there is no doubt that the Internet real estate market is saturated. Having an entire market saturated presents an inimitable challenge. However, business is a field full of challenges that are overcome with success through solutions. Here come new domain extensions.
New domain extensions vs. traditional domain extensions
Over the past few years, we have ushered in a new era of internet real estate. The unavailability of .coms, .orgs, and .nets has led to some catchy new domain extensions, including everything from .earth to .agency. The list is really endless.
The new domains now bequeath creative power to young companies and expand their branding possibilities. For example, a new fictitious accounting group called Billiton Accountants would probably go for the domain names, billiton.com or billitonaccountants.com, but both of course are taken. In that case, a solid substitute would be billiton.accountants. It’s short, memorable, and most importantly, it’s still out there (at least as of this writing).
The sales pitch that encourages the choice of new domain extensions over a traditional extension focuses on these points:
These new domain extensions are still just that, new. Thanks to this novelty, a vast majority of unique and distinctive name combinations remain intact. This creates a coveted opportunity for more businesses to get a domain name that they really want.
Uniqueness sometimes equates to memorability. Nothing makes something more memorable than being unique. New domain extension owners will tell you how intrigued customers and prospects have been when presented with a business card adorned with a new domain extension, especially if it’s an amazing pun. For example: thebillionairesclub.com could be thebillionaires.club.
New domain extensions are the future and big corporations like Google know it. So for example, instead of going the traditional route, Google opted for the abc.xyz domain for his Alphabet holding company. This allowed Google to secure a portion of the sought-after real estate on the Internet and create a level of protection around its sister brand. And many other major corporations are taking on these names in an effort to protect their brand.
The best time to protect your brand
Building on the point of protecting one’s brand, another new wave of domain extensions known as Brand TLDs (Top Level Domains) is just around the corner. A brand TLD allows a company to use its brand as a domain. More than 600 companies have applied for branded TLDs and some companies are already using them. For example, Google already has domains like ai.google, and the British broadcaster Sky has already set up a redirect for the domain q.sky.
Despite its growing popularity, many wonder if using a new domain extension instead of a traditional one could affect the performance of your website in search engines. The answer, according to Google themselves, It is not. Using a new domain extension will not affect your website’s search performance. Not at all surprising given the business endorsement of these new domains.
Although the .com, .org, and .net domains will continue to exist for many years to come, they are likely to be used less and less with each passing year. Founders in the business naming phase can stop worrying about whether their .com is already in use (just accept that it most likely is) and start thinking about all the creative web addresses they can create using new extensions from domain.
The Internet is a vast space with infinite potential. And although the three large domain extensions are still alive, they are approaching their digital transience. As such, it might be time to consider more creative alternatives that can help your website reach its full potential in this age of change.
In fact, this is a prime time to make a solid impression and say goodbye to the .com, .net and .org domain extensions. What cool domain names will you create?
Image credit: maxderoin; pexels; Thank you!