As you may already know, there are a deluge of new domain name extensions (also known as new gTLDs) hitting the market, and in the end over 1,500 new .SOMETHING’s will be live. New extensions like .GURU and .TIPS have seen a lot of interest and it’s clear we’re living in a world where there’s not only an app for everything, there’s also a domain extension for everything.
Big news media outlets are covering the rollout however they typically don’t know much about the domain world so are just trying to piece things together. So I thought now would be a good time to share a few pieces of advice for startups trying to figure-out what to make of these new domain extensions:
- You don’t need to worry about most of them – first things first. Anyone that tells you that now you have to spend thousands of dollars buying domains to protect your brand they’re really just trying to make money off of you. At the core of the new extensions is a new way to make money and as we all know fear is a great way to sell things. To be perfectly honest you don’t need to worry about most new extensions, if your company is called “Barney’s Plumbing” and you own BarneysPlumbing.com, are you really worried about someone owning BarneysPlumbing.photos or BarneysPlumbing.holdings interfering with your business?
- There might be a handful that do make sense to buy – Now that you know you don’t need to spend a small fortune on domain names let’s talk about what you might want to buy. If there’s a particular extension that directly relates to your business, sure, it might be nice to nab it if you can. For example, if you run a photography company in Venice called Barney’s Photography and you own BarneysPhotography.com, you might also want to get Venice.photography or Venice.photos but only do so if you can see a clear way these can help your business. Remember, these new domain extensions have no built-in traffic like .COM domains so you have to create your own value out of what really is brand new Internet real estate.
- It’s even easier to protect your Trademark – if you have a TM then you’re going to like some of the new provisions in place that make it harder than ever for people to squat on your existing Trademark. For many new gTLDs buyers must verify that they have a Trademark before registering a domain which makes it pretty hard for them to claim after the fact that they didn’t know.
If there’s one nugget you should get from the tips above it’s that you should not spend thousands of dollars buying up new domain extensions. Yes, there are some you might want to buy but anyone who tells you that you need to spend a meaningful amount of money or risk hurting your brand online is just trying to sell you something.