As everyone with a website knows, standing out among the billions of pages on the Web can be a difficult proposition. Changes that the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) plans to implement next year could help. but not too many firms or companies know about the changes, according to a recent survey cited in a Reuters article.
ICANN plans to liberalize its domain structure next year, according to the article. Instead of just the familiar top level domains like .com, .net and .org, firms choosing a domain name will have the option of using their firm name as the top level domain. This opens up branding options, and will allow firms to organize their domains in ways conducive to effective marketing.
For example, a firm could set up the domain name bankruptcy.firmname for the firm's bankrutpcy practice, or personalinjury.firmname for the personal injury section. The survey by Gandi.net found that two-thirds of companies don't know
about this option, however, but the survey also demonstrated excitement
about the change on the part of those companies who were aware of the
Of course, the price tag for a
personalized top level domain will probably scare off all but the
largest companies. ICANN plans to charge $185,000 for each new domain,
but is still expecting roughly 300-500 applications, according to the
While a personal top level domain might not be
feasible for small to midsize firms, there are other options that might
look more appealing. ICANN also plans to offer more geographically
specific top level domains that it currently does, so a firm could buy
a domain name that refers to its metropolitan area, like
firmname.chicago or divorcelawyer.houston.
Grabbing one of these
new domain names could lead to a marketing coup for your firm, enhance
your location in search engine results and give your brand the prestige
you've been looking for.