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Is the .Com Overrated?

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by PerfumedNecromancer
When it comes to domain name extensions, most people are familiar with .com.  Because of this the average webmaster is scrambling to get the perfect .com domain name.  Some may even forego registering a potential goldmine of a domain name in favor of getting a less popular .com.  Yet, there are dozens of other domain names available, some of which have gained popularity despite not being a .com.  How can a webmaster determine if their site is going to be in such a league without the traditional .com?  This article will explain how.

First, a webmaster needs to evaluate the purpose of their website.  If their website is designed to simply direct people to an affiliate page, then it won't really matter what extension it has, since they are only going to visit it once anyway.  However, if a website is designed for repeat visits, people may not care about the site not having a .com.  Sites that contain updated information, games and message boards tend to be the type of sites that get repeat visitors.  

Secondly, webmasters need to consider the memorable nature of their domain name.  If a webmaster is able to create a witty domain name hack, such as del.icio.us,  and their content is good, it may not matter that they don't have a .com.   A good site that can allow a webmaster to register unconventional domain name extensions is New.net.  This site offers extensions such as .love and .free.  By looking at these extensions, webmasters can start pondering ideas for their own domain name hacks.  If they need help, they can always type the word or letters used in the extension in a keyword analyzer or search engine.
 
Thirdly, webmasters need to determine whether or not a domain name with an unconventional extension will rank higher in search engines than a domain name with a traditional one.  In fact, consider the above-mentioned example of del.icio.us.  Honestly,  how many people are typing such a domain name in their browser?  While it is certainly memorable, all of the periods associated with it are annoying.  Yet, the site still has a high search engine ranking, which is probably how it's getting its traffic.

Surfers visit it from the search engine, bookmark it and never again have to be associated with its unique URL.  This is the type of success a webmaster wants to emulate.  Indeed, if a domain name is keyword-rich and memorable, webmasters need to definitely go for whatever extension is available for it.  

Of course, this is not to say that a person must be limited to just domain name.  If they want to still use .coms after using other extensions they can.  In fact, the more domain names that point to a site, the more likely a search engine bot will index it higher.  So, ultimately, with this strategy, webmasters will have two domain names they can work with.  They can use the one with the unconventional domain name in search engine marketing in hopes of getting indexed high, while the other one can be used in printed media, where people are more likely to be concerned with the type of URL they are entering in their browser.

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