Here is something few business owners and people across the world are not aware of: the age of the ‘.com’ may be over. The number of websites on the world wide web, with the ‘.com’ domain has finally reached a point of total saturation. There are just no more names available. The time has come to start really looking into the other domain options available for the Internet.
One domain registry company that seems ready for this transition in the naming of domains is GoDaddy.com. Since they are responsible for about half of all new registered domain names, they were in a position to see this coming. They have already taken steps, such as changing the default domain name search to ‘.co’ instead of ‘.com’. Now, I know the question that many of you are asking: Why ‘.co’? Well, according to the net regulator, Icann, the ‘.co’ web address has attracted nearly 600,000 registrations since its creation. It was assigned to Columbia this past July and is now being run by a private firm. It has taken the Colombian government 10 years to get its domain name up and running on a commercial basis. Originally the ‘.co’ address was administered by the University of the Andes in Bogota. The university recognized the potential of the name, but the commercial roll-out never got off the ground. Well, that is no longer a problem and everyone is trying to get on the band wagon before this change in web address naming becomes widely known.
The ‘.co’ land grab could be one of the last before Icann overhauls the way net addresses are assigned. Next year the body is due to open up the system so that companies and individuals can register any name they want. Before the impact of those changes take place, and who knows how it will effect the industry, you might want to start thinking about what you will do. If you haven’t already established your online presence, then your decision just became that much more complicated. Before selecting a domain name, it now becomes an issue of what type of web address is going to be best for the ideas and goals of your website. With web addresses now ranging from ‘.tv’, an emerging favorite for television and other programming companies for obvious reasons, to ‘.me’ (a clearly enticing choice for emerging social media sites), the web address will be just as important as the actual name.
However, this added dimension to online marketing is not the only concern. Those names that remain available, or have been created and are up for sale, within the ‘.com’ addresses have become that much more expensive. Don’t forget, even with the new web addresses, ‘.com’ is by far and away the most popular and is now in even higher demand with the looming shortage.
If you are still mulling over the decision to take your presence online, I suggest you start the ball rolling. Now is definitely the time to get in on this new wave, before its implications reverberate throughout the industry, changing the nature of web marketing and web address regulations. The longer you wait, the crazier and more complicated things will have become.