Friday, August 31, 2018

New gTLD reports have been updated

I just finished the update of all new gTLD reports for the month of August/September 2018. New domain name registration volumes are an opportunity to check if end users register domain names or not. We recently added two new reports: Luxury and Music:
    (.restaurant - .kitchen - .bar - etc...)
  2. New gTLDs related to PHOTOGRAPHY
    (.photo - .film - .gallery - etc...)
  3. New gTLDs related to CITIES : these are city names only
    (.paris - .london - .tokyo - etc...)
  4. New gTLDs related to COMPANIES : new domain name extensions that we believe a company should keep its eyes on.
  5. New gTLDs related to the LAW and LEGAL matters
    (.legal - .attorney - .lawyer - etc...)
  6. New gTLDs related to FINANCE
    (.credit - .capital - .finance - etc...)
  7. New gTLDs related to a COLOR
    (.orange - .pink - .green - etc...)
  8. New gTLDs related to SPORT
    (.hockey - .basketball - .ski - etc...)
  9. New gTLDs related to ALCOHOL
    (.beer - .wine - .vodka - etc...)
  10. New gTLDs related to REAL ESTATE
    (.realestate - .realtor - .villas - etc...)
  11. Singular VS Plural versions of a new gTLD : these are domain name extensions which exist in their singular and plural version (ie: .gift and .gifts)
  12. FRENCH new gTLD applications : these are applications submitted by French companies only;
  13. New gTLDs related to RELIGION
    (.catholic - .bible - .church - etc...)
  14. New gTLDs related to CARS
    (.taxi - .auto - .car - etc...)
  15. New gTLDs related to HEALTH
    (.health - .doctor - .hospital - etc...)
  16. New gTLDs related to ADULTS
  17. Multiple Registries : group of Registries operating five (5) and more domain name extensions;
  18. NEW - New gTLDs related to the MUSIC community
    (.music - .band - .hiphop - etc...)
  19. NEW - New gTLDs related to LUXURY
    (.rich - .yachts - .chanel - etc...)

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

New gTLDs "Today": a new communication channel

I recently noticed that 150 members are following the new gTLD info on the Google+ community that I created a few years ago. Basically, I post the exact same info as on the LinkedIn new gTLD group.
A different channel
I am reopening this communication channel because it is simple, efficient and some still use it. It is also quite fast for me to post an info there: it requires a link and a title (I often add a picture).

You should click here to be invited and note that it requires to join to be able to post. As usual, I try my best to moderate publications and do reject everything that has nothing to do with the subject of new gTLDs. And again: selling domain names there is not accepted, there are many other places to do that.

Which information channel?
Many exist but I created five of them:
  1. A newsletter where I send 100% of the news found on Internet and related to new gTLDs (new gTLD domaining excluded);
  2. A Blog: the gTLD Club (my blog);
  3. My Twitter account;
  4. The LinkedIn group about new gTLDs (2,700 subscribers);
  5. The Google+ Community (100% of the news published in the Newsletter).
New gTLDs "today"
When desperately lost searching for the latest news about new gTLDs, I suggest to try this reminder:

Sponsors welcome
We have become quite efficient when it comes to ensuring that an information "about new gTLDs" is seen: we talk to/about new gTLD service providers but they are certainly not the majority to read what we write. Potential and existing applicants also read us. For example, this publication generated quite some buzz recently, this one too. We look for one single sponsor in each of the categories below:
  • A Backend registry provider;
  • A Registrar solution provider;
  • A Corporate or Retail Registrar;
  • An escrow service provider;
  • Trademarks are also welcome to sponsor us;
  • New gTLD and legacy Registries are also welcome.
Please contact us if you are interested.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

ICANN did not approve some .BRAND new gTLDs

The first round of the ICANN new gTLD program officially launched with no real methodology dedicated to ".brand" new gTLD applicants and - early before applying - some service providers (like myself) had no idea what to answer their clients when they asked: "do you mean that all registrars will be allowed to offer my domain names?"

Specification 13
The specification 13 was then created to change that and it became more clear how to differentiate a new gTLD dedicated to selling domain name (like .CLUB) and a .BRAND dedicated to the personal use of a Trademark (also called "dotBrand" new gTLD).

If the official list of the ICANN new gTLD applications does not specify which TLD is a Trademark and which is not, the complete list of specification 13 applications (for Trademarks) can be checked and one will notice that most requests were granted but some were not Approved or Withdrawn.

Not approved
The reason why some Trademarks were not approved is not explained and in many case, it is because the application was withdrawn by the applicant. Some, were not approved but the extension was delegated:
  1. The .POLITIE new gTLD (Police from Netherlands);
  2. The .MOBILY new gTLD;
  3. The .BOOKING new gTLD;
  4. The .OFFICE new gTLD from Microsoft;
  6. The .GOOG new gTLD from Google;
  7. Etc...
No comments
In the process to become eligible for a specification 13 application, the registry has to provide ICANN with an accurate and complete copy of his trademark registration and his request can receive a comment.

Very few comments were sent:
  1. A test was done in May 2014;
  2. A question was asked about the .MAN new gTLD in December 2014;
  3. Nine comments were sent about the .FOOD new gTLD in October 2015.
As of today, this represents 10 comments for a total list of 490 contracted dotBrand new gTLD applications.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

How do New Domains impact SEO: the report

The report
This is a report from India based multiple registry Radix on how new domains impact SEO. Questions covered are:
  • New domains and SEO - What is the connection between the two?
  • What do the users have to say about the impact of new domains on SEO?
  • What do SEO experts have to say about the impact of new domains on SEO?
  • Is Google using new domains?
  • What are some known facts about new domains and their impact on SEO?
  • What are the best practices for moving from one domain extension to another?
  • Does the age of a domain name matter in SEO?
The report can be downloaded here.

Radix Registry
"Radix" is a multiple registry to have applied for several new domain name extensions such as .TECH - .PRESS - .SITE - .SPACE and .HOST. The full list of the TLDs it applied for is available on its website. It is the third largest new gTLD operator with 2,533,086 domain name registrations (July 2018) for a total of nine extensions.

Friday, August 10, 2018

A complete guide to SEO and new gTLDs

I tend to download most guides dealing with new gTLDs that I find on Internet but I admit that I never read them all completely. The reason for this is that there is nothing new and the guides are often used as promotion tools. This one, from English backend registry Nominet, is 8 pages and I made the effort to read it until the end.

These are the topics covered:
  • What TLDs are and why organisations are using them;
  • Different types of TLD and how they can be used;
  • Benefits of TLDs including: improved brand recognition, better online security and more;
  • How Google and other search engines treat new gTLDs;
  • Explanation of ‘DotBrand’ – a particularly powerful type of gTLD for global organisations;
  • How organisations are embracing new TLDs for greater SEO benefit.
And this is what you will find inside:
  1. Introduction
  2. A beginner's guide to Top Level Domains
  3. The introduction of new gTLDs
  4. What is a .BRAND ?
  5. How do search engine treat new gTLDs
  6. Interesting: SEO tips effectively utilizing a .BRAND
The last point on SEO tips utilizing .BRAND domain name extensions is one that I found interesting: it is short but it is a must read for applicants with the intention to use their extension. Such section should be read before creating the first ".brand" domain name.

It is always interesting to read what one provider can add to such guides but I found that the new URL redirection strategy used by some .BRANDs was not covered.

A dotBrand Top-Level Domain is a powerful tool for branding mixed with SEO, not SEO only: a trademark will be able to do SEO without its own extension using other domain names that will probably cost a lot less money.

Download the guide
The guide can be downloaded on the Nominet website. Nominet is a backend registry service provider for 37 new gTLDs. It offers service to extensions such as the .VIP registry with more than 800,000 domain names registered, .BLOG - .LONDON - .BEER and .BENTLEY

Monday, August 6, 2018

Solutions for failing niche new gTLDs

A niche TLD is a domain name extension created specifically for a certain market or subject. Let's imagine that you were a leader in a specific financial subject and that you decided to operate the domain name extension representing this subject: THIS WOULD JUST BE A VERY BRIGHT IDEA because once the slot is taken, no one else can take it. A new gTLD is unique and there can be one registry worldwide.

"Yep: but no one buys our domains"
What if, after a certain number of years, you realized that your domain names just "did not sell" and no one bought them in the industry in which you are a leader? This is a problem that some registries are facing but in the case of niche TLDs, not generic ones, there are solutions to change this.

It does not sell? Change the method!
Some Multiple Registries, who operate five and more domain name extensions, have targeted niche terms because they are leaders in their industry. Again, this is a very good idea to demonstrate leadership in a business but if no one buy domains, the approach and method should be changed.

"Yeah right: then what?"
In some case, it cost a lot to maintain a registry and I noticed that some multiple registries just "dropped it" and their domain name registration volumes are...decreasing. I also noticed that some multiple niche registries have all the tools to develop their domain names again. So, here are suggestions on what to do:
  1. Lower the price: change the price at the backend registry. If you already "don't sell", one of the reasons (not the only one) is probably because the price is too high at the registrar and if you don't lower that price at the source (your backend registry), it won't lower at the registrar.
  2. If you are stuck with a bad contract (at the backend), hire a specialized lawyer to find a way out of this because if you can't find a deal with your backend registry (which I doubt), your registration volumes won't increase and you will have to change your backend just because of this. You need volumes of domain names installed and if you don't have that: no one knows that you exist. When you meet with your lawyer, ask him if selling your TLDs to another legal entity, or changing hands (to a subsidiary of yours or a complete different company) wouldn't be a solution to get rid of your contract to another backend registry solution provider.
  3. Announce the change of price when it is validated with your backend registry: registrars should follow you on this and announce it to their clients.
  4. Some have the tools: did you check your own tools? Some industry leaders are online and offline marketing specialists but neither use their own TLDs for their websites nor use their own tools to promote their extensions! Use your own tools: it is your teams' daily job to promote things on internet to your niche industry! If I had SEO specialists, and/or web designers within my company, I would put them in the same room for a brainstorming with that question: "it cost me "X" per website and domain created": "what can you suggest to help me sell the services of my company using our own domain names?". Give domain names and content to a SEO specialist, he should know what to do with it.
  5. Acquisition costs: "$1000 for a client introduced" is something that I read at a new gTLD niche TLD. When killing the cost of a domain name at the backend registry, such an amount of money allows to put a lot of domain names on the market with a basic introduction to a service. Some will call this spam (unless each content is different), some will see back-links, some will want redirections. But is also means:
    1. Visibility: a lot more websites and domain names on the market;
    2. A lot more chances to acquire consumers for a service;
    3. A reduced cost for the niche registry to use his own domains since part of the price paid to the registrar gets back in his pockets.
  6. Innovation: we've seen that some registries domain name registration volumes stagnate and a reason for this is "not" that registrars don't do their job, registrars have too many strings to offer and potential consumers (registrants) don't buy anymore the way they did when we launched the .EU registry back in 2005. The solution is in innovation and some registries are quite creative at the moment. As a leader in your niche industry, who better than you, knows how to innovate? As the operator of the string representing your niche, you stay one step ahead so why not innovate using your string?

.BRAND new gTLD Reports are updated once a month: CLICK HERE !