Most people are familiar with the ubiquitous Top Level Domain (TLD) extensions like .com and .org, but when ICANN began opening up more generic TLDs in 2012 and 2013, the landscape changed. Don’t worry; choosing a less common TLD will not negatively affect search engine rankings.
In your search for all the right domains for your online strategy, consider these seven items when selecting your TLD:
- Provide Context: Recently the TLD .insurance was made available. When selecting TLDs, consider the customer. If they are navigating to your company at .insurance, they know what to expect when they click on the site.
- Establish Geographic Location: It goes beyond just country extensions like Canada (.ca) and the United Kingdom (.uk). Some cities have begun using site extensions as well. For example, the Eiffel tower moved its official page to www.toureiffel.paris.
- Selection is More Varied: The use of generic TLDs opens up the market for a wider variety of websites. If your company’s name is not available on .com, you have more options to choose from. Just make sure that it is logical and your customer will remember it!
- Improve Brand Recognition: Create shorter and more memorable domain names for your customers. In eConsultancy’s article reviewing branded TLDs, BMW was at the top of the list for next100.bmw as a great example of a simple domain name that conveys their message of showing their vision for the next 100 years.
- Enhance Brand Protection: Be strategic about the way you protect your brand. Consider if there are any TLDs that could negatively affect your brand or draw users away from your brand.
- Extend Creative Possibilities: Using generic TLDs gives more opportunity to be creative and memorable with the marketing of your website. Though they have recently announced an ownership transition, the social bookmarking web service Delicious was creative and effective with their domain name, del.icio.us.
- Incorporate Marketing Campaigns: In your next marketing campaign, instead of directing customers to a URL extension, you can send them to a dedicated domain. If you are promoting a Christmas holiday sale you could promote it on yoursite.blackfriday.
If you need assistance evaluating your online domain strategy, please contact us.