How to Understand the New Domain Name Extensions
Not long ago, experts believed the Internet was too full. They wanted to keep new websites closed – and digitally shuttle businesses into a virtual waiting room, where they’d wait and wonder when their website would be available.
Yes. The world of websites has officially gone weird.
People want more personal touch in the digital marketplace. And now because of these things called TLDs, it’s possible. The abbreviation stands for Top Level Domain and it refers to the part of a website address after the dot.
So .com, .net, and .org are all examples.
Until July 2013 there weren’t many TLDs available, and they were not that good. This is why most businesses went for a .com and remains the most coveted type of name. But unless you have a unique business name you’re unlikely to find a .com that is available. So you either had to sacrifice a smooth business name, or sacrifice the TLD that you chose.
But in July 2013, the organization responsible for things like domain names – ICANN – opened the virtual floodgates on TLDs. It essentially meant that almost any combination of three letters or more could be put up for sale. And since November 2013 they have started to become available.
It is a slow process with many of the domains not being released until late 2014 or even later. But it is worth highlighting the ones with the greatest potential - and those that are a bit interesting.
Top New Domain Name Extensions
- .SHOP – There are two domains vying for top position in the new TLD stakes, and .shop is one of them (.web is the other). On balance it will probably end up being the most sought after and popular name simply because it can be applied to many situations, including businesses whose main revenue comes from offline sales. It will be released sometime towards the end of 2014, possibly September.
- .WEB - .web makes it to the number two spot on the list as some research has shown significant levels of pre-registration for .web domain names. It will be released around the middle of the year and possibly even as early as May 2014.
- .SITE – The appeal of this TLD is easy to see, particularly for businesses that use websites for marketing but actually trade offline: .site is much more descriptive than .com. It is expected to be available in late 2014 or early 2015.
- .MUSIC – For the millions of musicians and bands around the world this TLD will be perfect. Significant interest is expected when it goes on sale in the middle of 2014.
- .HOTEL – The hotel booking industry was one of the first to show real growth online and it has not slowed, so .hotel should be popular. It won’t be available for a while. The estimated launch is in the middle of 2015.
Other Interesting New TLDs to Look Out For
- .NYC – This one is ideal for all businesses based in New York, and for businesses outside of the city but who want to appeal to New Yorkers and demonstrate a local presence. Also look out for similar names in other parts of the US and around the world including .WALES, .BERLIN, and .LONDON.
- .COFFEE – With so many coffee shops in every neighborhood let alone city, it is hard to stand out online, but a .COFFEE domain name might help. Other similar examples that will be released over the next 12 to 18 months include .SHOES, .PIZZA, and .WINE.
- .CPA – This specific domain is targeted at accountants but there are other similar domains that will soon be available. These include .CONTRACTORS (which is already available), .FLORIST, and .DENTAL.
A New TLD Can Help You Stand Out
The weird world of the Internet may be a crowded, noisy place. But you can rise above the noise with a coveted TLD. Don’t wait in the waiting room. Purchase one (or more) of these top-level domains when it becomes available in your industry. You’ll stand out and stand up to those experts who once believed the Internet was too crowded.