New Domain Names Could Hurt Marketing Efforts

March 16, 2009 at 12:10 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment
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ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) recently announced they wish to expand the list of top-level domains available for companies to choose from. In other words, the end of a web address could be .candy, .plants, or .clothing instead of .com, .net or .org.

Tidbit of knowledge: there are currently 21 generic top-level domains

Sorry Mike & Ikes, Laffy Taffy's Shaking Its Stuff At .candy

Sorry Mike & Ikes, Laffy Taffy's Shaking Its Stuff At .candy

Companies would be able to choose their new domain as it relates to their company or product. Laffy Taffy could choose to purchase the .candy domain, making their website http://www.laffytaffy.candy instead of http://www.laffytaffy.com. Here’s the catch- only one company can use each new domain. This means that if Laffy Taffy gets .candy, Mike & Ikes are outta luck. We could potentially see multi-million dollar bidding wars for a most-wanted domain, and there is no guarantee it would even be profitable.

See, here’s the problem. They tried this in 2005 when they introduced the .travel domain. Ever heard of it? Nope, didn’t think so. That’s because we are preconditioned to type .com at the end of a web address. Even if we know that the address should end with .net, we can’t help but think “if I type .com it will redirect me.” And that’s the problem that would occur if ICANN announces fair game on new domains. Big companies would feel obligated to purchase the domain names that relate to their company, for fear of cybersquatting. Once those domains were purchased, 1 of 2 things would happen: 1) those companies would have to shell out extra money to market those domain names; or 2) they would redirect their new domains to their main .com address. Either way, a lot of money is being spent on a completely unnecessary move.

Spend millions on a new domain name, or save someone's job? Seems like an obvious choice to me.

Spend millions on a new domain name, or save someone's job? Seems like an obvious choice to me.

How much money? It would cost a company $185,000 just to register the domain, and then their annual fees could be between $25,000 and$75,000. Not much of a bargain. Plus, factor in the bidding wars between competing brands and you’ve got millions upon millions of dollars essentially being wasted.

With today’s economy, don’t you think we should be spending our money on more useful things? Like, oh I don’t know, avoiding layoffs? Just a thought.

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