Every now and then we see new or highly marketed Top Level Domains (TLDs) to get really hyped. The three big (.com, .net and .org) will always be the most popular TLDs, but which small TLD will become the most hyped one in 2010?
We’ve seen it before and we will see it many times before.
At the end of the 90’s (ten years ago!!!) .NU became popular in the Scandinavian countries since the word “nu” means “now” in both Swedish and Danish. At that time the price of $25 was really cheap compared to a .COM domain name and .SE had too many restrictions on what could be registered so it was almost impossible to get a cool .SE domain. Since then the .NU has lost it’s importance and Nunames are almost seen as a clown company by some people . Some domains still use it as domain for it’s primary site, but it’s not seen as the obvious choice for your primary domain.
About the same time as .NU (or at least shortly there after) the .CC TLD became heavily promoted by Verisign via it’s subsidiary eNIC as “the next .com” domain. Verisign and eNIC did a good job since .CC TLD became the “second largest TLD registry in the United States second only to Verisign” in 2001. Today I’ve seen the site used for “credit card” sites and maybe one or another Clickbank affiliate directory, but not any big web sites.
Some registrars started promoting .WS as a Web Site domain a couple of years ago while it’s in fact the TLD for Samoa. I heard a lot of buzz about it, but never saw any big web sites using .WS as domain for it’s primary web site. Today the site is a little bit like a big MLM program since all unregistered domains promote a “income for life” program.
In 2005 we got to see the new European TLD for the first time, but I guess only European Union and the registrars wanted this domain. A lot of people registered this domains anyway mainly to prevent cyber squatters to hijack their trademarks. Many new trademarks where registered before the release of this domain just to join the sunrise period. One example is the trademark #S#E#X# which would give the trademark owner a chance to register sex.eu…..
I guess this year has been all about .ME (the Montenegro TLD). This domain is great for domain hacks (domains where the full domain name spell out a word or a phrase), like for example find.me or havefunwith.me. Godaddy has promoted this TLD heavily, but I don’ think it will be that popular next year.
So which TLD will become the hype during 2010? Maybe the new .ASIA, or something else. What do you think?