New Top Level Domains create new opportunit​ies and decisions

Top Level DomainsFor years, we have had a narrow assortment of domain extensions (aka suffixes) to choose from: .COM, .NET, .EDU, .ORG and few others. Over the years, the choices have expanded to choices such as: .CO, .INFO, .BIZ, .ME, .TV and others.

Most domains have been priced at about $10/year. A couple of parameters have changed in a big way. First, some extensions are priced significantly higher. .TV, for example is about $40, annually. XXX, should you have the need for it, has a yearly cost of $100.

But yet there’s more…

New domain suffixes are being released at the pace of several, each months. A few examples having relevance to the wedding and hospitality industry are:

  • .photography
  • .menu
  • .lighting
  • .club
  • .directory
  • .camera
  • .equipment
  • .kitchen
  • .technology
  • .boutique
  • .limo
  • .photo
  • .shoes

These extensions come at different price points. .guru can be had for $40; while .photography is only $25/annually. Now, one can spend a small fortune on an infinite number of domain name extensions. In the past, search engines did not consider the extension as important in a search. Whether you owned .com, .net or .org was of no consequence.

As you might speculate, that is about to change. Owning a domain name, such as DenverWedding.Photography or LasVegasUp.Lighting will have both a cool-factor and search ranking influence.

Potential Pitfalls

ICANN, the governing body for domains is allowing both singular and plural options (such as .hotel and .hotels). One of my first web development clients was BBJ Linen. Their precise name was the singular, BBJ Linen; however, many industry professionals referred to them in the plural – i.e. “We like to thank BBJ Linens for today’s beautiful table coverings.”

In a BBJ board room situation, there was an internal squabble about whether to buy the singular or plural. On of the owners turned to me, and said, “Andy, should we be the singular or the plural?”

With tongue, firmly in check, I said,

“Yes!… (pause for quizzical faces, and dramatic effect).. we should buy both BBJLinen.eom and BBJLinens.com. You can brand yourself in the singular all day long, but when people get to their computer, they need to be directed to your website, regardless of whether they remember the name correctly, or not.”

And to this day, that $10 a year decision for buying BBJLinens.com to complement BBJLinen.com remains a smart move. Don’t let any unscrupulous competitor try to hijack traffic to your website, ROADBLOCK THEM!

I prefer GoDaddy as my domain registrar of choice. As the domain frontier expands I would encourage you to stick with domain registrars you are familiar with, directly. The best domain name management is to accumulate all your domain names with one company. It makes easy to manage your renewals.

More details to come in future posts.

Andy Ebon - wedding marketing expert

Andy Ebon
Wedding Marketing Expert
The Wedding Marketing Blog

Regular Contributor – Wedding Marketing Expert
The Knot B2B

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