A great domain name should sound intuitive and effortless. With some hard work and creativity, you can register a domain name that you and your patrons will love. However, in this blog, we’re focusing on domain extensions.
A domain extension is what comes after the dot at the end of a web address. It’s used to designate a website’s country code or category. For instance, in ownwebsite.com, .com is the domain extension.
If you plan to own a website you have to do some critical thinking about what top-level domain (TLD), aka domain extension or domain ending, makes the most sense for your specific needs. It’s helpful to at least know about the five most popular domain extensions.
The five (5) most popular domain extensions
Choosing a recognizable domain extension helps with your online business branding. These are five of the most popular domain extensions to consider.
We’ll explore these five domain extensions and why each would be worth considering for your new domain.
1. The international King – .com
.com is the most popular top-level domain (TLD). At first it was used for for-profit businesses and organizations, but has now since become the cornerstone of domain extensions.
Internet users have spent over the last decade browsing websites with .com extensions. It’s the most familiar domain extension and is quite expected when hearing new domain names.
Therefore, it’s foresightful to buy the .com version of any domain you own, purely for brand recognition and to ensure patrons don’t accidentally go to the wrong website.
When it comes to .com domain extensions where there are pros, there are cons. The primary reason you wouldn’t pick .com for your new website is that you may be unable to get your desired address. With the advent of the internet and web development, countless entrepreneurs bought domain names to resell them for a profit. If your desired domain name is unavailable, you likely have to pay a small fortune to purchase it from the current owner.
When deciding on a domain extension, you should strongly consider the .com version if it’s available. However, if it’s unavailable, or the rights are too expensive to purchase, other options are available for you.
2. The UK connection – .co.uk/.uk
A.co.uk/.uk domain extension should also interest you, especially if you’re a UK-based business.
The fact that they’re location-specific domain extensions mean that they’re an excellent way to show patrons that you’re UK based.
Naturally, if you’re trying to attract global patrons, a location-specific domain name may not be the best choice.
Nevertheless, remember, you can always buy your domain on more than one domain extension and use them to target the relevant audience for your website.
3. The Networking domain – .net
.net extensions were originally intended for internet service providers or networks; but has since become a renowned alternative to .com. It’s also open to everyone. Even so, .net is in less demand than .com. This leaves a greater likelihood that your desired domain is available.
The .net might be a nice option for tech companies because it has implications of network and technology; and can help validate and communicate these services. If you understand how a .net extension positions your brand, you can use it to your advantage to grow your credibility and community within the IT space.
On the contrary, businesses that operate outside of the tech-service industry could disappoint visitors. For instance, a baker’s website “cookies.net” could easily be confused for a site about web cookies rather than food. This disconnect could keep patrons from coming to your site; as well as confuse those who do.
4. Build your cause with .org
The .org extension was originally designed to represent not-for-profit organizations. Today, it’s open to anyone. .org. However,it is less common than both .com and .net. This means you have a greater chance of acquiring your dream domain. However, it remains a popular option for many non-governmental organizations, non-profits, politicians/ political parties, and online communities.
Therefore, .org doesn’t make sense for everyone. It mostly makes sense if you operate a not-for-profit or information-driven business. For example, many people associate .org with building and cultivating communities as well as knowledge bases, so if you operate an eCommerce store, .org wouldn’t be the best choice.
Craigslist, Wikipedia, and WordPress are brands that use .org. None provide the same service, however they all rely on their communities to grow their brands and share knowledge and information.
5. This CCTLD is great for companies – .co
The .co extension was originally designated for Colombian websites, but has since been globalized. The .co TLD brings to mind “company”, “corporations” or “commercial ventures”. Thus, creating a website with .co is foresightful for businesses, especially young startups that advertise themselves as original or unique.
Premium .com domains are rarely available and if they are, you’ll have to pay a small fortune. While on the other hand, .co domains are less sought after, which grants you more options and flexibility.
Other domain extensions to keep an eye on
The aforementioned domain extensions are a great starting place, however you aren’t limited to just them. Actually, there are over 1,500 more different TLDs available. Here are some other popular options:
- .app – is great for tech businesses or any application launched.
- .biz – is a straightforward. It’s aimed at businesses of all kinds
- .info – is an open extension that is short for information
- .shop – Offers an obvious ecommerce connection
- .xyz – is an open extension available for general use
The take away
Picking out the perfect domain name calls for a lot of careful consideration. Not only do you have to find a memorable name reflective of your personal or brand identity, you also have to ensure the domain extension meets your needs. When you’re ready, choose from our variety of domain extensions here and build your website with Ownwebsite’s pre-made templates to launch your website. We not only offer website templates, but you’ll get secure hosting for your site too. For a free consultation connect with sales and support here.