Branding · Domain names

How important is it to get a .com url?

Stuart Silverman

June 26th, 2016

We are rebranding and looking at new company names. How important is it to get a .com url? So many good .com names are taken.

Justin Mitchell Partner - Creative Director, UI UX Designer at SoFriendly

June 26th, 2016

It 100% depends on your audience. We started with a .ly and quickly found that non-technical CEOs were having a hard time finding us, especially over the phone. We still use .ly for email but eventually caved and bought the .com for $2500. So now we just redirect sofriendly.com to our main ly domain just so we don't lose any traffic. If you're building something for developers, a .io domain works perfectly fine. If you're hoping to sell your business by word of mouth, a .com is almost required. 

Scott McGregor Advisor, co-founder, consultant and part time executive to Tech Start-ups. Based in Silicon Valley.

June 26th, 2016

.Com is important if you think that people will know your name well (e.g. Microsoft) and try to go directly to your website by typing in the name plus DOT COM, because dot com is the MOST COMMON TLD. If you think that they won’t remember your name anyway (e.g. XooXooX), and that they will always look your name up in a search engine, it will rarely matter. If you think that they are not even looking for your name, but instead will by searching for your category (e.g. “smart phone cases”) and you are going to rely on SEO to get to the top of the category page, you definitely don’t need a dot com address. As TLDs other than .COM become common, it will be less and less important to have a .COM.

Victoria Cabrera Marketing Coordinator at Patxi's Pizza

June 26th, 2016

There are several discussions on this topic on FD already (make sure to do a search before posting) http://members.founderdating.com/discuss/topic/Domain-names and http://members.founderdating.com/discuss/5449/How-important-is-it-to-get-a-com-url specifically.

Shel Horowitz I help organizations thrive by building social transformation into your products, your services, and your marketing

June 26th, 2016

Most people still put in .com at the end pretty much automatically, so you will lose traffic by not having it. And if that domain is owned by a competitor, you could lose sales as well. Also, if you use any marketing strategies that rely on oral branding (e.g., radio), people will HEAR .com even if you say .somethingelse.

It IS still possible to find good .com names. In fact, it's a service I offer in my consulting. Let me know if you would like more information.

Dean Harris Chief Marketing Officer- Fractional CMO-

June 29th, 2016

I prefer the second choice. For perspective, I've done this before. A lot.


Dean Harris Chief Marketing Officer- Fractional CMO-

June 26th, 2016

It is very important to get a dotcom URL.

Elliot Grossbard

June 27th, 2016

I've recently been weighing the same issue. The most important feedback I got was, if you ate banking in the domain name to be your core brand or draw,  that is a foolish strategy. That being said  .Com domains give a sense of history in the quickly and ever changing tech world,  on the otherhand. ly or. me domains give a current and hip feel. 

It also depends on the name of your business. You can be creative by leaving out a letter or vowel or even adding one. You accomplish uniqueness and the ability to grab a normally popular. com domain. (family.com vs families.com or fam.ly) 

Max Garkavtsev CEO at QArea, TestFort

June 26th, 2016

Hello, Stuart.
We are not in domain business, but I regularly buy good names when I see them fit for some of my future ideas. Sometimes I manage to get inexpesive domains, sometimes I buy domains for several thousands USD. Eventually you will spend at least several thousands per month on your PR and SEO activities, so having paying once for a good name one time is not that big loss, especially on rebranding stage.
As example we have recently rebranded our QA outsourcing business from Bughuntress.com to Testfort.com.
I highly prefer .com as seo guys say it matters, but there are some other domains which you can play with, like .io , .QA etc. if you want some fresh name and want to save on .com.



Anonymous

June 26th, 2016

What matters is good domain authority, which you can get with any domain suffix. It does not have to be .com. It's really not important. There are also a lot of great alternatives now such as .tv, .media, .care, .london, etc. The list goes on. 

You can build domain authority on any you choose. 

However you should be concerned with who else might take the .com (or other) variant, because depending on what's hosted there, it could harm your brand. 

Just try to choose something that befits your type of company and trading location, for now and in the future. 

For info, I just bought a bunch of domains for a startup, but the .com is being held for a hefty ransom. We don't really want the .com, but because of the risk of somebody else putting something shady on there in the future, we may consider acquiring it once we've trademarked our startup's new name. 

Hope this helps



Jon Schultz President, Blue String Ventures, Inc.

June 26th, 2016

It depends on the nature of your venture and how much funds you'll be putting into marketing. One thing to note is that if you decide you name your company AmeriWidget, for example, and you have AmeriWidget.com, you can just brand and refer to yourself as AmeriWidget. But if AmeriWidget.com is expensive and you choose the .net, you'll always have to refer to yourself as AmeriWidget.net, otherwise people will look for you at the .com and you'll also lose emails when people mistakenly write stuart@ameriwidget.com instead of stuart@ameriwidget.net.

With that said, if your site will contain a lot of video you might want to choose a .tv domain because when you advertise a .tv domain it tells people that there's video on the site and people like video.