Use domain extensions for creative marketing & customer engagement

Sweeten the deal

Many brick-and-mortar businesses have a website presence that likely ends in .com, .net or .org. But, did you know that in 2014, a slew of new domain name extensions started rolling out to provide a much wider variety of domain naming choices?

From .accountants to .xyz, new domain name extensions can cover all your domain name bases.

 

These new domain extensions hold value for creative marketing campaigns and increased customer engagement. If strategically placed within your existing website, they become a valuable shortcut and marketable URL to drive visitors deeper into your primary website.

Domain extensions + brand marketing = creative genius!

Let’s look at a few examples of how these new domain extensions can be used to create multiple landing points for your target customers, increase customer engagement, and support your marketing goals.

Loyalty programs

If you’re a marketer or small business owner, you can use the new domain extensions to brand loyalty programs. Let’s say your business is Fresh Brew Coffee, a local coffee shop, and you have just launched a customer loyalty program. You register a .club domain name — like freshbrewcoffee.club — and link it to your existing website. You could also create loyalty cards with this easy-to-remember domain listed on them.

Building buzz

Say you want to create some buzz around a new product that you are launching. Your marketing campaign could include a domain and a site for the product using the new .buzz extension — yourproductname.buzz.

For Paris Fashion Week and its other Fashion Week websites, Access Fashion Media created .buzz domains to drive engagement, branching out beyond their original .com extensions.

Paris Fashion Week Buzz Domain Extensions

Promote a sale

Does your business participate in Black Friday sales? If so, create a domain such as yourstorename.blackfriday or set up a custom domain for any big sale, such as yoursalename.sale.

Feature a contest

Offering a contest that you want to build excitement around? Create a domain such as yourcontestname.win using the .win domain extension. You can use the easy-to-recall URL to promote the contest in your social media networks and other marketing channels.

Collaborate on an event

Does your business participate in any collaborative events like “shop local” with other local businesses? If so, create an .events domain and website for the collaboration. Work with your collaborators to promote the custom URL, such as youreventname.events, to drive traffic to an attached website that includes event details and a list of participating businesses with links back to their websites.

Make it your primary domain

Using a domain with one of the new domain extensions as your primary website address can be a great marketing move for your business — especially if the extension aligns with your product or service. There are so many new domain extensions it’s still easy to get a short and memorable domain name that is truly representative of your business. Check out a few examples below.

Confetti Website Events Domain Extension
Events website business Confetti uses confetti.events as its primary domain.
Eiffel Tower Tours Paris Domain Extension
Find the official website for planning a tour of the Eiffel Tower at toureiffel.paris.

Do new domain extensions impact SEO?

Another point worth mentioning is that Google won’t say for sure whether domain extensions impact SEO, but many believe that they have a positive impact.

In a recent article for Search Engine Journal, SEO expert Bill Hartzer recommended considering using keyword-rich generic top-level domain names for Google AdWords campaigns. He based his recommendation on positive outcomes from an AdWords test campaign that used the same keywords, ad copy and landing pages to send traffic to a .com domain and, at the same time, .diamonds domain. As he explains:

“At first, when we first ran the ads, we found that we got more impressions on the .DIAMONDS ads, and the .DIAMONDS clicks were cheaper. The clicks on the .COM ads were more expensive, but ultimately the .COM clicks converted better. Eight months later, however, we ran the same ads again, and found that the .DIAMONDS clicks were still cheaper than using a .COM domain name. But, it turned out that the .DIAMONDS clicks were converting better than they had before.

I’m now recommending that if you’re running Google AdWords ads, consider using a keyword rich new gTLD domain name. You should, of course, do your own testing, but you may end up paying less for clicks and getting more conversions.”

While it might still be too soon to know exactly how the new domain extensions are performing in the search engine results pages from a branding standpoint, having multiple domains using the new extensions makes good sense. And, you may very well get an SEO boost as well … so why not?

How will you use these new domain extensions?

New domain extensions offer many opportunities to creatively market your business. The terrain is still fresh and many domains are available to register. Their usage is limitless. If you’re a creative business owner or marketer, the new domain extensions offer an excellent opportunity for business growth as well as innovative customer engagement.

Give it a try:


Also published on Medium.

Cody Landefeld
Cody Landefeld is an experienced web consultant who helps technology companies and nonprofits build and scale powerful web solutions at Mode Effect, a WordPress website development firm. He’s also a happy husband, father and founder at @modeeffect. You can find him on Twitter @codyL.