There has been an absolute avalanche of new TLDs (Top Level Domains or sometimes shown as gTLDs or Generic TLDs) released into the wild, and you need to consider these rather than trying to obtain that elusive dotcom domain.
A TLD or Top Level Domain is the bit at the end of a domain name after the dot, the .com, .net or .co.uk, but now we have much more to choose from as new TLDs are released every month.
Most people want the dotcom as it is the most original form of website link, but, today, it is difficult to find a dotcom available in the name you need. Unfortunately dotcom being the most wanted means it is almost always the most likely to be taken and therefore not available to you, or even worse someone has registered it just to park it awaiting an offer and will sell it to you but at a huge markup. dotcom domains can sell for thousands or hundreds of thousands of pounds depending on how small the domain is and how important those word(s) are to someone. sexdotcom for instance sold for a staggering 13 million dollars.
Due to the lack of dotcom domains and the massive demand for new domains there have been new agreements made with registrars allowing them to produce newer more targeted TLDs in an attempt to make it easier for registrants to find that elusive domain they crave and allowing you to identify your business more easily.
This started with the campaign for sex sites to be listed as dotxxx, dotsx or dotsex, but this failed as those sites still use other TLDs to attract customers, it has, however, spawned a new breed of TLDs for every kind of industry or genre from dotactor to dotuniversity and hundreds in between to choose from.
There are several advantages in obtaining one of these new TLDs the main one that it can shorten your domain considerably, for instance if you are a service provider and have services in your domain then using the new dotservices TLD you can shorten your domain from sometrainingservices.co.uk to sometraining.services, that not only looks better but is easier to remember, an example is vipsecurityservices.co.uk have now registered vipsecurity.services which is much shorter, easier to remember and more identifiable.
DRA Digital have always used dradept.com, but have rebranded recently to DRA Digital Marketing, luckily the domain dradigital.com was available and snapped up, this now redirects to our main domain of dradept.com as this is the domain seen by and indexed regularly by the Search Engines. Recently dotdigital was released, so we now also have dra.digital but is this easier to remember than dradigital.com and therefore more appropriate?
PROS for DRA.digital
- Shorter, less real estate used when displaying on screen or printing posters, leaflets and other marketing material
- Easy to remember
- Quickly identifies us as a digital company
CONS for DRA.digital
- It doesn't look like a real domain name (yet!)
- People might expect to see normal end bits such as dotcom or .dotcodotuk and may get a little confused
PROS for DRAdigital.com
- As people generally expect a dotcom this is natural and easy to visit.
- It looks like a domain should look
- It has everything you would expect from a domain name all in the right places
CONS for DRAdigital.com
- The dotcom does not really mean anything, it does not identify what the company is about in any way
The dotcom is now so ingrained into our psyche ensuring people look for it above all else, in the same way that if you ask someone for their web address they always say "double u double u double u dot", even though every website starts with that and by now should be a given.
In my opinion it will take a little effort but I think in the long term dotcom, although still important, will fade as people accept the new TLDs and embrace the change.
Some of the more interesting new TLDs are listed below, but there are many more out in the wild, go hunt one down today;
.events .services .solutions .camp .deals .gifts .trade .market .engineer .expert .business .company .global .limited .help .how .guide .email .bar .pub .club .london