TLD or Top-Level Domain is the end part of your web address, e.g. google.com or onewebcreations.co.uk
This can be an easy thing to overlook but can have a significant impact on the success of your website. A prevalent thing is for people to go with the generic .com website address, as most think this is the best. And why wouldn’t they? All the most prominent sites use this. google.com, facebook.com etc.
In this article, we are going to look at some of the most popular TLD’s and explore what you should consider when deciding on one for your own.
1. Why is choosing your TLD so important?
Your TLD, just like the first part of your web address (second-level domain), is your chance to make the right first impression on potential customers. There are hundreds to choose from these days, and choosing the right one will depend on what your business does and your customer base.
For example, if you’re a photographer, you may want to go with .photo for a trendy TLD. On the other hand, a tattoo artist may choose .ink, and a musician may want to pick .band as their TLD.
A site with a standard .com TLD is more likely to serve customers across the globe, whereas .co.uk is probably mainly targeting UK customers. Search engines like Google will be more likely to rank you higher, and you’ll get more site visitors if you put a bit of thought behind choosing the correct TLD, so choose wisely. It’s not an easy thing to change this at a later stage.
2. Help me decide which one to pick.
Still a bit lost and not sure what to choose? It can be a daunting idea to set up a website or even a business for the first time. And you may want to take your time and give every detail a great deal of thought before proceeding. My advice would be to put in some thought, do some research, and then decide. Your business is far more likely to succeed if you take action rather than procrastinate over the more minor details. So here is a speedy guide I’ve put together to help you decide which TLD is suitable for you, depending on your business.
.com – If you serve customers worldwide and want to give a professional image.
.co.uk – You only (or mainly) serve UK customers and want to show up in more local searches.
.org – You are a non-profit, charity or educational organisation.
.net – You specialise in internet-based services like web hosting, databases or collaboration tools.
3. What else should I consider?
Ok, So you’ve given this a bit of thought. You have the perfect domain. There are a few things I would highly recommend doing before you pull the trigger on this. The first thing is to check to see if your ideal domain is available for purchase. There are several sites you can use for this, but my personal favourite is namecheap.com.
Head on over and type in your prefered domain, they will check with the registrars, and you will instantly see if your site name is available. If not, they will offer some suggestions for alternatives.
You should also do some market research before you purchase. Who are your competitors? What are their site names? You probably don’t want to have a web address that is very similar to one of your competitors and start sending all your customers to their website.
Likewise, your website needs to have an easy to communicate address. You don’t want to need to explain your web address to someone, so I would avoid things like hyphens and other punctuation. I like a good acid test to imagine you are in a busy bar and you’re trying to tell someone your web address. It’s much easier to say go to createsomething.com rather than cre8-something.com
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