If you're buying your first domain name, you're probably asking yourself "is a .com domain name better?". The short answer is that a .com domain name is globally recognized, which gives it certain advantages over some other domain names.
But that's not the only factor in play when choosing a domain name. Let's explore the issue of whether a dot com domain is better by looking at the factors in play.
What is a .com domain?
If you want to purchase a domain name, you may have some basic questions about .com and other domain extensions.
In fact, one of the questions you have is probably "what is a domain extension anyway?". Put simply, a domain extension is the bit that comes after the dot in a domain name. The proper name for a domain extension is a top-level domain, or TLD.
The .com domain is just one of many hundreds of TLDs available today.
If you want to learn more about the history of .com domains, you can read this guide.
But in this post, we're going to focus on practical uses of the .com TLD, so let's talk about the advances of a .com domain.
Advantages of a .com domain
- Widely known - Most people know the .com extension, which means it adds trust to your website
- Doesn't tie a website to a particular location - If you're looking to do business in more than one location, then .com provides you with a domain name that will work well in most markets.
- Easy to remember - The fact it's short and well-known means that people are more likely to remember your website's address if it ends with .com, rather than a newer, longer TLD.
Having a .com domain can also be beneficial in case you want to sell the domain name at one point in time.
That may not seem like a huge list of advantages, and it's true that in many cases an alternative domain extension will work just as well as a .com domain. (You may also find there are cheaper domain names than .com.)
For example, there is no inherent search engine optimization advantage in going for a .com domain name (despite a persistent myth that there is).
There is also one significant disadvantage to opting for a .com domain, and that is its popularity - you may find that the domain name you want to buy (the bit that comes before the dot) has already been taken on .com
In such case, you might have to switch to another domain extension to get the domain name you want, (just make sure that you aren’t violating any intellectual property such as trademarks when buying your domain) or opt in for a domain backorder and get notified as soon as the coveted domain expires.
Which is better .com or .co.uk?
Both .com and .co.uk domain names have a great deal of appeal for UK based websites, and neither one is inherently better than the other.
If you're planning to focus entirely on the UK market, then you may decide that a .co.uk domain suits your needs perfectly.
Equally, if you're planning to attract website visitors/customers from outside the UK then you may want to go for a .com domain.
It can also be a good idea to buy both the .com and .co.uk versions of your domain name. That way, you can make sure that no one else buys the one you didn't and uses it to snaffle away visitors who would have otherwise made it to your website.
When you're ready, you can search for a domain name here.
Buying a .com domain does offer certain advantages, but you may need to be flexible about the domain name you want if you're set on getting a .com domain.
You may also want to buy your domain name across multiple domain extensions in order to protect your brand. If the desired branded domain is already taken, our domain lookup tool can help identify the owner details and facilitate communication for a potential purchase.
You can learn more about what makes a good domain name in this guide.