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Drop the .com and choose a meaningful Top Level Domain

New Top Level Domains

May 2014

Remember an internet where almost every legitimate URL ended in .com (with a .net or .edu sprinkled in here and there)? That is a thing of the past.
 
In 2014, hundreds of Top Level Domains (TLDs)—the letters that follow the dot at the end of a website address—are in the process of rolling out to the general public for registration. It’s the result of a decade-long project by internet guardians ICANN to transform the web into something much more diverse than the handful of domains we’re used to.
 
When your business first started its website, did you have to hyphenate words or create an extra long URL because your brand name plus .com was already registered by another company (or, worse, a domain squatter)? This is your rare chance to get the domain you want and improve your company’s online branding and search engine optimization (SEO), too.
 
Let’s take a look at some of the new options businesses should consider.
 
General
Do you want your URL to quickly identify your company as a business? This can be accomplished by choosing .business as your TLD. Another good choice is .enterprises, especially if your business already has “enterprises” in its name. And while .biz has been around for a while, it’s still a good choice if the domain you want is available.
 
Technology
Tech is one of the biggest new TLD categories, with 83 domains to choose from. Mobile developers will soon be able to use .app. Likewise, software developers can choose .software for their business. Others include .computer, .digital, .email, .technology and many more.
 
Local
Is your business locally focused? Depending on where you live, you may want to consider one of the new geographically focused TLDs. The first three available U.S. cities will be .nyc, .miami and .boston, and more will likely come soon.
 
International
Does your company do business with Japan? You may want to consider .asia or .tokyo as an alternate domain. Many more international locations (.london, .paris, .capetown) will be hitting the scene soon, as well as 83 domains in other alphabets. And if you interact with a variety of countries, .international and .world are others to consider.
 
Finance
If you’re dealing with people’s money, you need a trustworthy URL. Financiers have many new options, including .accountant, .bank, .cpa, and .mortgage, that allow them to specify their services.
 
Retail
Are you a retailer that deals with discounted products? Consider .bargains or .cheap to emphasize your good prices. Perhaps you sell something specific: a variety of TLDs such as .shoes and .tires are applicable. Want to create a special microsite for your Black Friday sale? Yes, .blackfriday will be available.
 
More Specialties
In the travel industry? Try .vacations or .hotels to get your customers in the right state of mind. Own an automobile franchise? Both .auto and .cars make sense for you. Perhaps you work for a law firm? You guessed it: .lawyer and .attorney will soon be available.
 
Just For Fun
Hundreds of new TLDs means there are bound to be some quirky ones. A few of our favorites include .diamonds, .duck, .ninja, .vodka, .wow and .bingo. And, of course, who can resist registering .fun?
 
There are many more TLD categories to explore, including real estate, healthcare, sports, professional specialties and much more. Visit your preferred domain registrar, check out your options and get creative—and most importantly, do it now before everyone else gets in on the action.
 
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