New TLD's are about 70% less trusted than .com's study says (avoid for ecommerce?)

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https://www.semrush.com/blog/new-research-visitors-don-t-trust-alternative-domain-extensions/

Most important part of the article....in a large survey of 1000 respondents conducted by Carleton University
  • 77.6% of 25-34-year-olds trust ‘.com’ and ‘.co.uk’ sites more than those ages of 55-64 (with 61%)
  • Women trusted ‘.com’ and ‘.co.uk’ more (74%) when compared to men (67.3%).
This brings up some big questions like are TLDS feasible for ecommerce sites at this time? I personally have a site thats XXXX.solutions and have had a few people in my email mention they werent sure whether it was a real site or not, looks like some people are still confused other tlds even work or exist. I am considering moving to a .com instead, we shall see.

Just some interesting survey results if your considering opening an ecommerce store, not sure how this would convert to conversion. Current conversion on my new .solutions store is 1.67% which is much much lower than any of my other stores not using a .com.
 

CCarter

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Honestly this shouldn't be news to anyone. I barely trust .net websites. People have already been conditioned to trust the ".com" version as the real deal. I always advise clients .com or nothing else. I'm not saying you can't get sales, but think about your own instincts when you see email spam coming in and hover over the URL pretending to be Fedex to see XXX.solution or XXX.XYZ - it reinforces that scam theory within that all non-".com" or non-".co.uk" or high level domains are not to be trusted.

When all those new TLDs were coming out we had a discussion about this at another forum and instinctively knew that people weren't going to trust them and to stick to the .COMs of the world. Even my own thinking is - if you can't afford the .com, can I trust you with my money or sensitive information?

There are companies like Intercom that started out with the Intercom.IO version that eventually switched to the .com version just because it makes you look like the real deal versus a copycat.
 

SmokeTree

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Personally, I put the trust in .com and will for the foreseeable future. When I'm asked by clients what domain they should get, I tell them to get the .com and if the .com is unavailable, see if they can buy it from the current owner or consider changing their brand name to something they can secure the .com for because anything else would be a waste of time in my eyes. Anything other than .com screams either "fly by night" or "we're not serious" to me. I can't think of a single purchase I've made online that came from a site that doesn't own the .com. E-commerce is about trust. I'm potentially giving this site my Credit Card and personal info and there's no way I'm doing that if there are any red flags waving, lack of a .com being one of them...

This doesn't mean that you can't succeed with .net, .org, .wtf, etc but would you really want to have, say the .net version of a domain when the .com is owned by a completely different company with an established site? For non-business sites such as technical projects and systems for personal/company use, I can see using an .io domain because of the purpose/intent. For organizations, I'd definitely recommend getting the .org as well as the .com and 301 the .org to the .com. At the end of the day you want your site(s) to be as serious as your business intent.
 
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Completely agree with everything said about. I also ignore most tlds for ecommerce, I cant think of one site I have bought anything off of for ecommerce with a tld. At the opposite end though it does look like many new startups are adopting tlds, but thats still years away from full acceptance as trustable by the public, especially older ecommerce users, I imagine a 50 year old seeing .solutions and immediately thinking this site is going to steal my credit card.

 

CCarter

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Just because a group of people follow an idea doesn’t mean it’s smart or correct. Intercom switched to the dot com, and I guarantee you that if any of those startups really take off they’ll acquire the dot com version, and eventually switch to it.

Most major brands we talk about use the dot com variation of their name, Nike, Amazon, Google, HP, Paypal, Stripe, Reddit, Quora, Facebook, and on and on. Then start going down minor brands - same thing. Interesting enough over 3.5 years ago within SERPWoo we analyzed the Global TLD distribution breakdown within the SERPs (we should update it to live results in the future): Global TLD distribution stats of the SERPs w/ Country Breakdowns









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The websites ranking in the Top 10 results are consistently known TLDs, ".com" being the most dominate. Now I'm not saying that Google is favoring TLDs - it's more so that webmasters, internet users, and bloggers and other people that link to websites are more likely to link to ".com" or officially looking TLDs versus some "XXX.solution" based on their own bias, and therefore ".com" is more likely to outrank other domains if there are a choice when links are still a huge ranking factor, which they are.

I can't think of one instance in the last 10 years I bought something from a non ".com", but also ask yourself when you outbound link or want to give information to someone or comment on a forum or something - are YOU more likely to link to a ".com"? Probably. Would you really feel comfortable sending a "XXX.solution" to your parents or friends? Do you trust that "XXX.solution" enough to outbound link to it within your industry when talking to others within your own industry?

Would you send that "XXX.solution" to your mother? Probably not. Yes it's purely based on biases of the past - is it right or wrong? I'm not here to solve those questions.

If those startups want to be "link-sticky" meaning have the opportunity to go viral or semi-viral or spread the word of mouth for their brand, they'll use the .com version eventually. Otherwise they are starting off the race on broken crutches.
 
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Thanks Carter this data is very helpful would be cool to see trends, if your data matches the change to more other domains that Y Combinator observed.

Personally, my domain is a 3 letter word my niche .solutions domain....similar to yoga.solutions, to me it looked amazing to scoop up the tld. But I guess the customer is always right and even if there is a 5% increase in conversion its worth it...I am gonna ballpark and say it gives me a 10-15% conversion increase. Fingers Crossed.
 
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It would be cool to see updated data @CCarter as it seems .io and .co has become very popular in recent years. Still probably only makes 0.1% difference to the head start that country TLDs have.
 
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For actual money sites I will use .co but none of the newer more niche TLD's.

For my personal tests I've noticed no difference in CVR between .co and .com via paid ads.
 

Ryuzaki

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For eCommerce I'd definitely avoid anything that isn't the most commonly used in your area.

I think though, depending on the demographic of your user base, you can get away with other options (though it's still not preferable), completely depending on the conventions that have arisen. For instance, with a SaaS for development / marketers, I'd think you could get away with a .io for two reasons, one being that enough other companies are doing so and the other being that tech-savvy users understand the convention.

Like in the cooking blog space, sites get away with using .kitchen some, etc. Of course, my guess is they all preferred the .com and couldn't get it.
 

Callum Short

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I operated on .co for a few years. As of last week, I finally had the opportunity to acquire the .com for 5 figures and snatched it up straight away. It was a no brainer.
  1. Impression - Having the .com domain makes us look more solid and established as a company, which will resonate through all of our acquisition channels (I hope).
  2. Confusion - Our audience is hospitality/retail owners where age demographics are on the upper side and not as familiar with the new TLDs. I know for a fact people have assumed .com and visited a blank page instead of our website. It's fair to say this will have lost us sales.
  3. Defence - While competitors buying the domain would be a winnable (although costly) trademark case, other startups with our name could have acquired the domain which would have cost us big time in the long run.
I agree with @Ryuzaki, domain importance depends on your audiences sensitivity to it. eCommerce has to be the worst, with SaaS depending on which space you are in. New TLDs have somewhat become trendy in the startup-facing SaaS space.

Personally, I think if the money is there and the opportunity, you should acquire the .com.
 

secretagentdad

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Heh,
I'm a total king .com kinda guy.
I really do wonder what the discount model for tlds should be though.
I used to do .com .net .org only but now I'm seeing people having success with the micro tlds for big keywords. Especially .io and .co and smarmy start up names.

Location tlds seem solid, but only for specific categories of keywords.
 
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Does anyone have insight into domain length, using a .com vs a short domain that is a .co, .io or similar gTLD?

For example, buildersociety.com and keywordsheeter.com, are both 14 characters + the .com. Is this acceptable in 2019? How long is too long?
 
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@jjj_ My two cents:

If a kid can read it, anyone can type it without misspelling it (the longer the easier to misspell it) and it can be easily remembered, you got it!