Back to the Basics

A Top-Level Domain. What is it? What does it do? And why does it matter?

A Top-Level Domain (TLD) can be the difference between making your online presence memorable and simply vanishing into the abyss of the internet. You’ve seen legacy TLDs everywhere, ranging from ​.COM ​(“commercial”) and ​.NET​ (“network”),​ ​to .INFO and .ORG (​ “organization”), but new generic TLDs have been making waves recently.

Just to recap what a domain name is, it is simply your website name. It's the part of a URL sandwiched between the protocol (HTTPS or HTTP) and the TLD (which you have just learned about.)

To maximize your search engine-referred traffic and attract more customers, opt to make your TLD a memorable one. For those of you curious to know the exact impact a keyword-optimized extension has on search engine results, take a look at this article about the rise in non-dot-com domain names from Naija Tech Guide.

Let’s Get Started

There are many great options available to register your new, memorable TLD. We personally recommend 101domain.com​, as they offer the largest portfolio of TLDs in the business, but there are a number of satisfactory registrars that can do the job. Simply enter whatever name your heart desires into the search bar on their website and register from there—with your TLD of choice. Once your domain name is added to your cart, go to the checkout and pay for it. That was easy!

It’s worth mentioning that if you’re a trademark owner holding a trademarked name, you can be the first to register during new domain launches, as long as you provide proof of said trademark and can pay the fee.

However, good domain names are not available for very long, so it’s imperative you act as soon as you can without hesitation. If your desired domain name is unavailable, ​registrars will often provide you with a list of alternatives that may suit your fancy. Or you can just wait until it becomes available, although that is never guaranteed.

Now, let me show you what TLDs are all about.

Lead by Example or Follow Suit

Without further adieu, I will show you how using a memorable TLD will make your website stand out—don’t worry, we’ll give you real-world examples so you know you’re in good company!

Let’s Talk Business

You’re an entrepreneur, ready to start your business. So you head to ​your registrar of choice in hopes of purchasing your domain name and undertaking your first venture, only to find out the name you want is...taken. In the past, because of the limited number of legacy TLDs (like .COM,​ ​.NET, and ​.ORG),​ your options when it comes to proceeding with your site were limited. You could either choose a completely new name (or add a new, and often irrelevant, word or character to your initial name of choice) or you could wait till yours became available (which would most likely take a while, if ever!)

But fear no more.

These new, industry-specific TLDs are for those who strive to make their website standout, who strive to make their brand unforgettable, and who strive to take their business to the next level.

A few ideas:

  • .careers
  • .consulting
  • .directory
  • .host
  • .inc
  • .online
  • .store
  • .support
  • .website

According to ​Forbes.com​, the creators over at Collab Inc. adopted the ​.INC ​TLD to achieve consistency. In fact, their customers were confused with their previous URL being CollabCreators.com. ​Collab.inc​ just made more sense. They cut down to the core, maintaining consistency and appealing to their audience.

You can do this, too.

For Tech

Technology is always changing and ever-evolving. There seems to be something new around every corner, and there is no exception with regards to the growing popularity of new TLDs.

As we know, once something is set in motion it tends to stay in motion. If you need some ideas, here you go:

  • .app
  • .solutions
  • .tech
  • .web

As if you needed any more validation, Google has followed suit, adopting the new TLD .APP.​ According to ​Forbes.com​, “within the first two weeks of Google’s ​.APP ​launch, it garnered 200,000 new domain registrations.” Talk about numbers!

For Creators

Now, let’s talk about the creative-minded folks. As imaginative as they are, sometimes it can be difficult when you’re stuck on a name you love only to find out the TLD you’d like is already taken. So you change and change and change your domain name, and by the time you find one that’s available, it just doesn’t suit you anymore.

You’re tired of this game of roulette. Why can’t it be easy?

With new TLDs, you can stick to your guns, but you can also expand into something that’s more catchy, relevant, and exciting. Best of all, the TLD will likely be available! No more heartaches.

Some examples:

  • .art
  • .blog
  • .design
  • .gallery
  • .media
  • .press
  • .tv

The creatives at ​Airbnb.design​ have already paved the way. By incorporating the TLD .design​, they have highlighted their purpose: showcasing their collaborations, and aiming to create well-designed experiences—all the while with a great name to boot.

It’s time to rebrand. And what better way than for the creatives to bring something exciting to the table.

For Educators

It’s time to get smart.                                                                     

With a specified TLD highlighting your educational pursuit, what better way is there to show you know what you’re talking about?                                                                 

Just to name a few:

  • .edu
  • .info
  • .news
  • .today

The people over at ​Afilias.info​ say what they mean and mean what they say. By adapting ​.INFO ​as their TLD, they’ve exemplified their mastery of technology.                       

And interestingly enough, ​Forbes.com​ has recorded several public broadcasters following suit. Companies like BBC and SBS have already introduced their respective TLD names ​.BBC a​nd ​.SBS. Additionally, European Broadcasting Union has, too, with ​.EUROVISION.                                                                   

This is happening fast, changing as quickly as the twenty-four hour news.

Money Matters

Put your money where your mouth is.

...kidding!

All jokes aside, finances are a serious topic. Updating your domain to a more finance-related TLD, shows that you and your company mean business. Not only that, but it also illustrates professionalism and your dedication to your customers.                           

Examples include:

  • .bank
  • .finance
  • .market
  • .money

The people over at ​Northwest.bank​ have already led the way. Choosing a finance-related TLD, over a generic, commonplace one like ​.COM,​ has helped them cultivate consistency with their company’s name and mission. In addition, it provides ease-of-mind and less confusion for their customers.                                                                  

If you want to present a greater level of professionalism, a new TLD may be the way to go.

Let’s Get Away

Ahh. Vacation. We all love a good one, don’t we? Tickets to a show or a good restaurant or concert. It’s nice to get away, isn’t it?

What’s better than a place you could only dream of? It’s time to turn those dreams into a reality.

With a new travel-driven TLD, you can transpire just that. For instance: 

  • .aero
  • .auto
  • .cars
  • .flights
  • .tickets
  • .travel

So many countries have already followed suit: ​Canada.travel​, ​Colombia.travel​, Georgia.travel​, ​Germany.travel​, ​Indonesia.travel​, and ​Peru.travel​ just to name a few.

It’s time to appeal to the driven, the ones who take the road less traveled, the ones who want to get out of their comfort zones and into the big, vast world.

Your time is now.

The End

Now I know you may be a little sad that this article has come to an end, but I hope this gives you insight as to why TLDs are meant more-so to help you boost your online presence and attract customers rather than to subside into the depths of the internet’s expansion, sequestering into the age-old saturation of ​.COMs, .NETs, and ​.ORGs. 

New TLDs are emerging and expanding. It’s a ripple effect, and it’s spreading out far. They’re meant to help you and amplify your internet presence. And they’re for everyone.

Every topic—for business, for tech, for creators and educators and people who work in finance or people who merely want to enjoy all that life has to offer.

Why not get the most out of the digital age and what it has to offer? The internet is a brilliant invention with so many capabilities. Make it work for you and not the other way around. You can make something of it.

With that being said, why wait? The possibilities are endless. Your perfect TLD won’t wait forever.

Author's Bio: 

I am a professional Content Writer at Fabglass - a custom E-commerce company based in USA corporate sector. My skills also includes user experience & conversion optimization.Love to write about travel,home decor,Auto,heath etc.