Choosing the best domain name for your website is a daunting task. Actually thinking of a great domain name is not hard, finding a great name, or even a good-enough name, that’s not taken is the hard part.
Choose .com instead of .net, .co, .biz, etc., (.other)
The most important criteria when choosing a domain is to select a .com domain if possible. The reason a company considers a .other domain is often because someone else is already using the .com version of the domain. Usability studies have proven that when someone hears or reads a domain name, by the time they type it in their web browser they’re most likely going to type .com anyway. If you do choose to go with a .other be aware that a signfiant portion of the cost and effort you put into your website will benefit the .com version, not yours.
Sometimes people see that their .com is not currently developed and assume that since there is no site on the .com the .other is a viable option. In these cases it’s even more important not to choose the .other. A domain squatter dreams about a company investing a ton of money into developing and marketing a .other website for which the squatter owns the .com. It raises the value of the .com significantly and it’s very easy to squeeze the .other domain holder into paying an exorbitant price for the .com when the squatter puts up a porn site.
This means that even if the perfect domain name is not available (such as mycompanyname.net or myexactkeywords.net) you’ll be far better off to select a .com even if it’s not as desirable of phrase.
A note about .org domains. If your organization is a nonprofit it’s generally best practice to have your primary website on a .org domain. However, never do so unless you can also buy the .com for the same reasons mentioned above. It’s easy to set your .com version to redirect to your .org website.
.Com Provides Credibility to your Organization
The .com domain extension is the preeminent domain extension of the internet. It is the most recognizable of any domain extension and it is used by almost all Fortune 500 companies. It’s the Cadillac of domain extensions and it’s human nature to give more credibility so someone driving a Cadillac than a Geo Metro.
It is more effective to build a brand using a .com domain. Studies have shown that people remember .com domains better than others (even .org and .gov). A .com domain is going to give you more bang for your marketing buck.
For more insight on this topic see Forbes “8 Smart Tips For Choosing A Winning Domain Name.”