Your site’s .net domain name is perfectly fine since…
- Appearing trustworthy is overrated
- You don’t want to seem authoritative – others know best
- The .com was already taken, but nobody cares about that
- Hard to remember names are better
- You’re a network services company
The domain extension .net stands for “network”. It was designed for network and email service providers. The “com” extension is for “commercial” sites (like yours).
Using a .net extension for your commercial site reflects poorly on your brand. And that’s not all, there’s several other disadvantages that you should be aware of if you’re using a .net when you should really be on a .com, so please give this site a good read and discover what they are.
If you’d like some help fixing this, please consider hiring me for that. My fee is just $250 for two to three hours of my time. I’m knowledgeable in this field and I know where and how to find you a good, available .com domain name.
Hire me and I’ll provide you with a list of available .com domain names that you can register and use to replace your current .net domain name. I’ll match my keen industry knowledge with an understanding of what you want along with my twenty+ years of industry experience, my degree in computer science and some creative thinking against the daunting, enormous and everchanging stockpile of available domain names.
I need to get to know you and learn what your business is all about in order to understand what kind of name you’re after and why. I also need to know who your target prospects are and how they may view your products and/or services. We’ll discuss any ideas or concepts you may have and brainstorm for more. We can do this over the phone, by email, or via Zoom.
I Get To Work
Next, I throw all I’ve got at your search. I’ll use my custom software, some domain investor tools and websites, and my eyes and noggin to locate available .com names that I think might work for you. Once I’ve done some digging, I may call or email you for additional guidance and clarification, or to share new ideas.
You Get Results
I’ll email you the results and we’ll set up a phone call or Zoom meeting to discuss the pros and cons of whichever names appeal to you. If you decide to move forward with a name, I’ll then coach you on the steps that you’ll need to take next to secure it and answer any other questions you may have.
.com by the Numbers
.com vs .net
Does it matter?
.net vs. .com, and More: What’s the Best Domain Extension?
.com provides multiple advantages. For one, potential visitors are more likely to remember your domain if it ends in .com, and be able to find it later. If you pick .net, many will probably assume your subdomain is .com anyway and land on a blank page, or worse, a competing website.
Additionally, a .com domain signals professionalism and authority in your space. Any extension other than .com might imply that another business is more established than your own, which hurts visitors’ confidence in your service.
Finally, there’s a usability advantage to .com. Smartphone keyboards include a “.com” key so users can quickly plug a domain into their browser. Unfortunately, this option isn’t available for any other domain extension, including .net. This might seem small, but even minor inconveniences can leave a poor impression on visitors.
Are You Hurting Your Website By Not Using a .com Domain?
there are some real benefits to using .com domains. Let’s talk about what they are:
- .com sounds more trustworthy. Non-tech savvy users might not want to use alternatives to .com since that’s the TLD they know and trust the most.
- It can make your website seem more authoritative. In a lot of cases, people will automatically assume .com domains are more serious than other TLDs. That goes double if you use a TLD that sounds ‘gimmicky, such as .fun or .xyz.
- .com is easy to remember. People are accustomed to using .com to visit most of their favorite websites, so they could struggle to remember other TLDs.
.Com vs .Net: Choosing the Right Domain Extension for Your Website
Since it’s such a well-known domain extension, by opting for a .com domain you can immediately communicate that your site is business-oriented.
When you’re handling customer payments, it’s also important that your site appears trustworthy. As a well-established, highly-recognizable commercial extension, .com can give your site a degree of professionalism and legitimacy.
The .net extension is also associated with commercial sites. However, it is most commonly used by businesses that specialize in networking and internet services.
Most mobile devices have a dedicated .com button. This means that when it comes to .com vs .net, the .com extension is more mobile-friendly.
New Research: Visitors Don’t Trust Alternative Domain Extensions
If a website address seems less trustworthy to potential visitors, it stops them from committing to click, and you lose them before you have a chance to show them your offers.
Research conducted by a team at Carleton University in Ottawa, and published in the journal Behaviour and Information Technology, found that we make snap judgments how good web pages are in under 500 milliseconds.
Forget about page composition and user experience! Visitors will make the same kind of snap judgment about the address of the website itself. With so much competition around online – the fear for those using alterative names may be that they would lose out to a ‘.com’ on the same page of results.
Is .com or .net better?
Generally speaking, .com domains are the best choice for most companies and individuals looking to establish a web presence, simply due to the fact that they are far more common than the alternatives. A .net domain, in particular, is ranked lower by Google than a .com.
The difference between a .net domain and a .com domain is that .com refers to a “commercial” domain, which includes business web platforms, eCommerce storefronts, personal websites, blogs, and several other general categories. Basically, if you want to make money online, a .com domain is the way to go.
While a .com domain is probably what you’re looking for, it can be useful to know when a .net domain should be used. Often, a .net domain can be found when a website is offering a networking, internet, or data hosting service.
Why We Recommend a .com Extension
A .com domain name is the most common extension and still generally carries more significant value for companies.
Google’s only reason to prioritize one extension over the other is that Internet users default to .com domains. People expect sites to use the extension – many associate real businesses with .coms, and Google tends to play on user assumptions.
In fact, more than 50 percent of all websites on the web use the .com extension.
So one could say that a .com extension helps your rankings because users are more likely to click on abcd.com than abcd.anythingelse. Additionally, .coms are easier to remember, and a person is more likely to type in the wrong URL with other extensions.
The first domain name ever registered was Symbolics.com in 1985 by Symbolics Computer Corporation of Cambridge, MA.
Domain name registrations were free until 1995 when Network Solutions was awarded the rights to charge for them.
In 1997, an accidental search for “google.com” instead of “googol.com” happened. The rest is history.
The Domain Name Marketplace
Where have all the good names gone?
They’re out there, but you need to know how and where to look and who you’ll be up against once you find a name you want, and it’s not pretty. The best way I can describe this market is as follows. It’s a disjointed, messy hodge-podge full of sharks. So I’ll only attempt to scratch the surface here with a general overview of the marketplace at a high level, as it exists here in 2022.
The competition for the best domain names is fierce. That’s because you’re not just competing against other ‘normal’ business owners such as yourself who just want good .com domain name for their business. Your real competition is the professional domain name speculator (domainer) who uses a bevy of sophisticated tools to seek out and buy up all the best names and then resell a fraction of them at a substantial profit to folks like you, and there are a lot of them out there! That’s capitalism folks, for better or for worse, so if you’re going play in their pond, you’d better buck up and educate yourself on the tricks of the trade to compete at their level.
Beware of scams. There’s no shortage of domain name scammers out there. You’ve got your registration scams, your renewal scams and your slams (unauthorized transfers). So do your homework, stay skeptical and be sure to avoid shady registrars. Some scammer ‘tells’ are as follows. They often pretend to be from an organization you know or from the government, claim there’s a problem or a prize, pressure you to act immediately, or need you to pay in some unusual or very specific way.
So where are all these names and how do I find one? There are basically six “buckets” of available domain names, each with its own unique set of challenges, advantages, disadvantages, constraints, and caveats. Although I enjoy mucking about in the mess that is this market, you may not. So read on to learn where the names live to see if you have the time (and the stomach) to dive into all this on your own. If not, then you can always hire me and I’ll join forces with you to get results, fast.
1. Unregistered (New) Domain Names
Domain names that have never been registered are easily, quickly, and cheaply purchased at any registrar for around $10.
The problem with finding a good one is that all .com names of any obvious value have already been registered. So coming up with a good unregistered name today requires knowledge of your industry, how your prospects think about and search for your products and/or services, some creative thinking, and a little luck.
Domainers are very clever and they also use a number of advanced tools to surface the best names for themselves, but they lack the depth of industry knowledge that you have within your particular market space. If we combine your knowledge and my search skills, it’s possible that we may come up with a good name that you can use that’s never been registered before.
I’ll draw upon your knowledge and use it to your advantage by brainstorming with you to come up with some terms that we can use in your .com name that may never have been used before.
2. Expired Domain Names
Domain names expire because someone fails to pay the renewal bill.
This can happen for a multitude of reasons like the company went out of business, the owner no longer needed it and just let it expire, or perhaps forgot they even owned it at all, and for a thousand other reasons.
Expired domain names are typically a great value because just like with a new domain name, you can buy them cheaply and easily at any registrar for around $10.
About 140,000 .com domain names expire daily starting at around 2pm (NY time) at which point they become available for registration by anyone who happens to be watching for them closely.
All the obviously great names will get re-registered by a speculator very quickly, but some decent names can and do go unnoticed, for a while. I search them all, including names that are likely to expire in the near future, which we’ll get into next.
3. Expiring Domain Names
As a domain name nears its expiration date, most registrars will run the name through their own auction sites in order to sell the rights to buy the name to the highest bidder at the precise moment of expiration but before anyone else gets a chance to buy it.
In these auctions, domain name speculators bid against each other to secure rights to the expiring name directly from the current registrar. However, if the owner of the domain renews the registration at any point before the last second before expiration, then the auction is canceled and the current owner retains the name. Otherwise, it goes to the highest bidder.
Great names can be gotten this way, but the competition from domain name speculators can be fierce with bids for the best names shooting into the stratosphere.
If you have the bucks to go after them, then it’s worth watching this space, especially if your wallet is fat. Either way, I’ll do the research for you and let you know what’s up for auction that might be a good fit for you and you can decide if it makes any sense to go after them.
I’ll coach you, but you’ll need to bid on these names on your own. If there’s a perfect match waiting for you here, then it’s worth putting in your bid even if it’s a modest one.
4. Drop-Catch Domain Names
If nobody bids for the name in step 3, then the name becomes officially expired (dropped) and up for grabs to whoever gets there first.
A “drop-catching” service will get there first because they use superfast computers, internet connections, and custom software to seize upon the domain name within milliseconds of its expiration.
For a fee of around $40-60 per name, the drop-catcher will attempt to buy the newly expired domain name within milliseconds of its expiration. If successful, they will then transfer ownership of the name to their customer who pays the fee. If they have more than one customer for a particular name, then the drop-catcher will auction off the name to the highest bidder in a public auction.
The list of names that I provide to you may include expiring names. In that case, you may want to enlist the services of a drop-catcher service to increase your odds of owning the name. I’ll also search a number of drop-catchers sites for names that are currently being auctioned off just in case any may be of interest to you.
As in step 3, if I find a name that’s nearing expiration or in a “caught” auction, and you decide that you want it, I can coach you on what you’ll need to do next, but I can’t buy it or bid on it for you.
5. Registered and Listed For Sale
There are tens of millions of these and they’re almost always owned by domain name speculators (domainers). Although most are worthless, many of them are highly desirable.
Pricing on these range from cheap to reasonable to insane. Unless you tell me otherwise, I look for ones that are cheap to reasonably priced. That means they’ll be priced anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars.
On the upper end of the scale, prices can run into the millions and the negotiations and legalities for a high-value transaction can take years. If these are in your range, let me know in advance so that I know not to omit them from consideration.
The marketplace for privately owned names can be convoluted and unreliable in many cases, but in other cases, it’s not so bad. That’s because a number of reputable service companies have sprung up to make transacting a deal for a private name a safe and efficient process.
Some of the popular and reputable companies operating in this space are Afternic.com, Dan.com, and Sedo.com. Also, the registrar of the private owner’s domain name can often be entrusted to facilitate the deal safely.
6. Registered and Not Listed For Sale
Millions of registered domain names go unused for myriad reasons, like someone intending to start a business using the name but never did or maybe their business failed (most do) shortly thereafter but they paid for five years of registration in advance. They may have secured a dozen candidate names, picked one and the rest just sit unused. Some may hold onto a name just in case someone contacts them someday with an offer.
Securing one of these takes time, effort, knowledge, and negotiating skills. If the domain’s registration is private (most are) you may also need some inside info to hunt down the owner. That’s why it’s often best to enlist the help of a professional domain name broker for these. Most registrars have brokers on-staff and ready to assist, and the fees are usually pretty reasonable.
Underused domain names are typically owned by microbusinesses, bloggers, hobbyists, fanboys, or failing companies. The name may have little to no commercial value to the owner, so a reasonable offer to buy their name from them could be a win-win for all.
If you’re interested in a name that’s used by a company doing substantial business with it, then be prepared to pay up. For obvious reasons, these owners won’t be motivated unless you appear credible, serious, and are armed with an offer they can’t refuse.