It’s been almost three years since the rush of New Generic Top Level Domains (New gTLDs) into the domain name space began, yet still almost no one knows about them. New gTLD awareness and adoption is lower then we all hoped it would be at this stage but what is even more concerning is out of the small portion of people who are familiar with New gTLDs, many are skeptical and mistrustful.
The average person has been trained not to trust domains other than the Classic gTLDs (.COM, .NET, .ORG, .EDU, and .GOV) but there’s a whole list of New gTLDs people have yet to explore. As quick as we usually are to adopt new technologies we can also be very stubborn when we are stuck in our ways – let’s take a moment of silence for Bitcoin. The world is changing, communication is truly global and there are even entire populations that use nothing but Country Code Top Level Domains (ccTLDs). In the United States we’re not too familiar with domain names that aren’t .COM — leave it to us to have essentially made .COM our de-facto ccTLD. Anything that strides outside of the Classic gTLDs, especially our beloved .COM, have us raising an eyebrow, but little do most of us know what else is out there. The rest of the World embraces domain names that don’t just end in .COM and it’s time we adapt as well.
We here at 101domain have to say we think it is our fault as an industry for not marketing these New gTLDs as well as they should be. But there’s good news: it isn’t too late to start, because this is the future! Some New gTLDs have been doing really well marketing themselves to a group or niche (.CLUB) and others sell themselves (.LAW). The best way for people to begin trusting the system is exposure and adoption of the new gTLDs by powerhouse brands. As much as we hate to say others influence our purchasing decisions, we’re more likely to try something if a friend recommends it or if everyone else is doing it, hence Yelp’s pervasiveness — when was the last time you made a new meal decision without it? If you haven’t had a chance to yet we encourage you to check out a full list of New gTLDs here.
You’ve always had the chance to personalize what’s to the left of the dot but now you can make what’s to the right your own. Make it your expertise, make it creative, make it your brand, but most of all make sure isn’t something that .SUCKS! It’s time to get over your New gTLD trust issues. Become an early adopter and advocate for the future of domain names.