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It seems like certain TLDs tend to have a negative connotation to them, at least among my peers, such as .info, .us, .biz. I'm not exactly sure why, but I personally don't tend to trust .biz domains and I like to avoid them as much as possible.

I really like the new TLDs and I am wondering how the new TLDs will affect user perception of them. The new domains seem like they would be easier to recall for some, however I fear that users might not remember that they are indeed valid TLDs and might incorrectly use .com/.org instead of .coffee (or alike). I know if I gave my mother a website with a new TLD, she would end up typing "something.coffee.com" or just "something.com" instead of "something.coffee".

Does anyone have any research regarding these new TLDs? Should we continue registering .coms and .orgs? In regards to this question, won't the new TLDs make the domain lengths longer?

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No.

People place the most amount of trust primarily in .com, .org, and .gov and secondarily in .net. All other TLDs are subject to additional scrutiny by your users. In addition if I just know your domain, but not the TLD you are using. I'm going to guess, and I'm willing to bet most of your users will guess ".com".

.com should always be the primary domain (even if it redirects to a .gov or .org or .net). Just look at what happened with the whitehouse. The .com is currently a SEO Spam site, used to be a pornographic website - but the .gov is the official Government website. How many people (especially before Barack Obama's administration face-lifted the government Internet presence) do you think landed on the wrong one?

Supporting articles:

In regards to SEO ranking, using ccTLDs can reduce Global ranking on Google:

Older, still-relevant article regarding .xxx and other new TLDS

Older, Counter-point article

Brand

The basis reasoning behind this is it dilutes brand ownership. If you own something.fun and someone else owns somethingfun.com or something.com, now there is brand dilution. People won't necessarily distinguish those as separate sites just from first glance. It's likely that they'll land on one of the .coms first if they hear about it in some non-clickable, non-copy-and-pastable fasion, too, based on the number of other sites that use .com.

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    "People place the most amount of trust primarily in .com, .org, and .gov and secondarily in .net": Do you have a source for this? I’m pretty certain that this is not true for many (if not for most) people. I’d guess that users perceive ccTLDs often as more trustworthy than those gTLDs (where .us might be a notable exception). Also note that .gov is restricted to USA, so users from other countries will rarely/never visit .gov domains. – unor Apr 10 '14 at 1:16
  • This is strictly from my experience in the industry. However, there are definitely some supporting articles. Mostly specifically regarding the .xxx domain. The premise is it causes brand dilution, and ultimately forces brands to purchase all the alternatives to .com as well as other TLDS – Julia McGuigan Apr 10 '14 at 1:25
  • Wasn't explicitly referring to ccTLDs (mainly .biz, .info - those should be avoided). My guess is for users outside the US, this isn't a problem (probably beneficial to still own the .com - you don't want confusion in the brand if they land there). Exception, is of course, .us. A quick Google of .com versus other TLDs returns a lot of information about SEO and one blogger who wrote a counter-article to my point based on statistics showing increased ownership of other TLDs (correlation). For the status quo, I don't think that applies – Julia McGuigan Apr 10 '14 at 1:28
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    Would you still say this is true, nearly 5 years later? – 51426 Jan 25 at 21:03
  • Meta: from a SO a moderation standpoint? I don't know? Should I delete the answer? How far back are my answers expected to be edited - all of eternity? From a "what a user may type"? perspective. The answer lies within how easily confused it would be with the .com it's shared with, and how easily it would be corrected by the user if they landed there. That said - I still think some TLDs (marketing opinion) would fare better (e.g., .biz / .info / .net may be less "nice"). So I think you can start using them...but it's also not my so much my sector anymore. – Julia McGuigan Jan 28 at 7:34
3

Just bought a few of the new TLD domain names as they fit with certain businesses. For example bought http://www.bagel.coffee for a bagel shop. And bought http://www.Lawyer.coffee for a Los Angeles Family Law Firm.

So it really depends on who is going to be using these, and their purpose. My thought is they are good marketing and an easy way to say the name of your web-site. In the short term though Apple needs to fix their browsers as they don't understand the domains.

--

/EDIT - 3 weeks later: Seeing some traffic hitting our site from http://www.Lawyer.coffee. A LOT of the better domains were taken such as familylaw.law, lawyer.law, etc. So had to get a bit creative and find something that worked.

What I really like about these domains is they are very easy to say. You can meet someone and quickly say "email me at john@bagel.coffee". At first they are surprised, then they want to know more about the domain. For today it still has a newness factor as well.

1

Although it's true that some domain have had bad reputation and a lot of misuse, we can't predict what is going to happen next, a lot of things change and many of the things that have changed in the past few years involve more trust, better behaviour (in some aspects), more regulations about domain purchase and more education about Internet related things.

Should we use those new domains?, I'd say yes. Are they going to be a hit soon? I don't know. Are they going to be misused? I don't know, probably some people will misuse some of them.

The thing is that if people start using them properly, they will be very valuable, and I'm not talking about money, I'm talking about finding resources. Right now a lot of times we have to do a lot of searches because we can't figure out the name of a site with a specific information due to the extended use of .com, but if websites started using the right domain, at least some of them would be easier to guess and find.

And even discarding the search part, if you can name something properly, identifying the reason or subject of the thing, why not do it?.

But if you start using it, feel a bit of extra responsibility, not just for your site, but for the users and the future, feel like you are working towards a major objective, to help that domain become trusted and useful for everybody.

1

We recently bought http://www.blue.coffee to show some art work. Was curious to see if people would go to the sites It is now December and so far decent but not great results.

Our web-site names with .com are getting about double the hits as the .coffee names. An example is http://sdadoption.com/. That is getting 2x the traffic as lawyer.coffee. This has been consistent over the past 3 months.

We are going to continue buying these names as we found those that make sense for our sites. And it's interesting to see how many good names are being bought up. We work with a Family Law Attorney in Beverly Hills and a lot of the decent domain names such as familylaw.web were snapped up quickly by others. Seems a lot of people out there think these will be useful names to have.

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I think that a better answer is to allow a name of a business to be typed in and it invisibly leads to the proper site, hiding the URL entirely. As soon as you have many choices for something, it ceases to be meaningful and becomes confusing instead (a large number of top-level domains - eg: more than 5). This is also true if one choice dominates, as with .com (51% of URLs).

If a city has a "main street" and main avenue and main boulevard and main court and main lane and main whatever, don't you think that would do more harm than good? Your GPS can find "starbucks on main" or even "coffee shop downtown" a lot easier than you can recall the address. I think this is where the Web needs to go: hide the details and give people what they can use easily.

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    How would the DNS know whether you want to go to example.com or example.us or example.biz? – Mayo May 8 '15 at 16:31
  • My point is that to people, the different TLDs are not especially meaningful. If your city had three places, all with the same name, but one was governmental, and two were different varieties of businesses, that would be stupid. It should not be happening. The only reason to mimic a name is to try to scam traffic from it, which is universally recognized as bad. Why support a bad possibility? Prevent it. – user67695 May 8 '15 at 17:41
  • I see what you're saying. So if a name McDonalds exist in a .com it shouldn't exist in .name, .museum, .city or elsewhere? – Mayo May 8 '15 at 17:51
  • Just get rid of the ".com". Is this so hard to understand? – user67695 May 8 '15 at 17:59
  • Yes. Actually. Do you mean not having TLDs? If TLDs are important then why not .coms. If duplicate names are what you're trying to avoid then OK. It certainly doesn't help the "not enough names" issue though. – Mayo May 8 '15 at 20:36

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