Many people do not know and careless to know there is a secret rivalry taking place between domainers. Who are domainers?  Domainers are people who buy and sell domain names like commodities.  And yes, there is big money in this.

The rivalry is over which domain extension or TLD (Top-Level-Domain) is better.  TLD is the suffix that follows the domain name in the web address.  We’re going to break it down and settle the rivalry and tell you which domain extension is the best and why?  As a disclosure, Freehold Domains Inc., is an intangible asset company; we invest in domain names as well.

All business decisions should be about strategy and growth.

When opening a business your goal is to establish and maintain a competitive advantage. When seeking to maintain a competitive advantage you consider, how much cash you have on hand to grow the business. What’s your marketing and advertising budget.  How long will it take you to establish legitimacy online.  Can someone easily replicate your operations, brand or even delivery of product or services.

While studying at Wharton Business School we discovered the lack of proper funding only accounts for 10% to 25% of why businesses fail.  The other reasons are inadequate management, ineffective business planning, and marketing mishaps.  Today’s post will speak to marketing mishaps. As a reminder for all of us, marketing refers to activities a company undertakes to promote the business or selling of a product or service.  Your business name and equally the domain name and its respective extension is all a part of marketing and promotion.

.COM is king for now. 

The obvious question is what makes .COM king?  Here are the three reasons why the .COM extension is reigning supreme as the TLD.


It’s about comfort

1.  Existing market recognition and familiarity:  .COM is synonymous with business.  All the major brands, from BMW, Target, Lego, Johnson & Johnson (J&J), Ritz, Tidal, Apple, Walmart and so forth use the .COM extension.  You would be hard pressed to find the top list of 20 major companies that do not have a .COM extension.  If they are a major market competitor and do not have a .COM extension, you better believe, they are seeking to get one.

No one wants to stand out like they do not belong. The .COM extension provides the recognition you may belong in the room, in the market or in business.  Here’s a question, why is no one selling purple water on the market?  “Come get your purple water” loudly yelled the hot dog cart guy. Guess what, purple water is a hard sell.  Yes, there are colorful waters on the market.  But in terms of brand recognition with proper health in mind, which is the better sell, purple water, or clear water?  Unanimously, clear water.  Not because purple colored water is bad for you, but because of market familiarity. People buy what they know.

Should I trust you

2.  Legitimate or buyer beware: The adoption and now standard of the .COM from major corporations adds a credence of legitimacy; people will believe mentally your business is true and real.  I have lost count of how many times I have deleted an email with .NET, .BIZ, .IO, or the alike.  The first thing I reference is the extension to see if they are legitimate.  I should mention this also goes for the GMAILers.  I am very skeptical of people who have businesses with GMAIL accounts as their email handles.  The first question I ask myself is, “how can someone take you seriously if you are unwilling to bet on yourself with a legit business email name”.

The .COM says I am here to play this game. I am here as a contender.  .BIZ or .NET gives me the impression you are still trying to figure out what you are trying to do. You are not yet legitimate.  Guess what, I am not the only one thinking this. Right now, thousands of well-meaning businesses and entrepreneurs are getting their emails deleted because the reader is not sure if you are legitimate or a scammer.

Meta™® logo of Facebook Corporation

Change is costly

3.  Adoption and rebranding costs: Consortium of IT Software Quality stated, “poor quality software cost US companies $2.84 trillion in 2018”. Do you think that number dropped in 2022, no.  Again, businesses only thrive and grow if they can establish and maintain a competitive position.  Choosing the wrong software, with glitches, malware attacks and is not user-interface friendly, will slow down a company’s growth.   Too many problems.  How much capital is lost when your business adopts the wrong technology?  For the average business minimally $1,200 per year.

If you choose a domain name extension that is not familiar and recognizable for business, let alone an industry, how much capital will your business lose?  A lot of money and time.  How much will it cost you to rebrand and make existing and new – potential customers aware of your new branding?  Johnson and Johnson spend $100 million on digital advertising.  How much did it cost for them for marketing adaption of J&J?  Consider its $100 million plus.  Pivoting late in the game is costly, especially with rebranding.  Even Facebook’s Meta rebranding costed $20 million.  Adopting a new brand is costly.  The other domain name extensions look appealing.  The real question is, if you choose another extension other than .COM will your potential customers welcome you or will they delete you?

.COM domain extensions are tried and trusted. Hype looks good. But when the dust settles you want to be recognized, viewed as legitimate, and do not want to spend on adoption or rebranding.