You know .com, .net, .org, .gov, maybe .mil and, even if you won't admit it, .xxx. But did you know there's now a .golf domain?
On Wednesday, ICANN, the nonprofit Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, made a slew of new top-level domains available to the public, including .golf. In the Internet world, that's kind of a big deal, essentially creating a whole ton of new digital real estate and putting it up for sale for about $50 each.
So why was the .golf top-level domain -- like so many other new ones -- created? Simple: The world was running out of desirable common domains. For example, every four-letter combination followed by .com had already been bought. Even ones that didn't make sense. Why? Because simplicity is marketable, easy for businesses to share and consumers to learn and remember. As more of the easy-to-recall domains go away, ICANN wanted to do several things:
1. Expand the number of top-level domains to afford for better segmentation by industry and interest by offering a variety of domains that tell people exactly what they should expect instead of the somewhat-vague old designations.
2. This also creates the real estate for fun, catchy and easy-to-remember domains (e.g., play.golf).
3. Make a boatload of money off of each domain sold at a premium cost over your standard-issue domain extensions.
Now that these .golf domains are out there, should you buy one? If you're a golf company or destination, then the answer is probably yes. At a minimum, the outlay will help you protect your name from those who might use such domains for nefarious purposes. It could be a simple redirect to your standard .com site. If you're a golf course that has a weird domain that's way too long or makes no sense or ends in .net for some reason, then get a .golf domain right away. It's a chance to get your course name as you want it.
This kind of specialization is the wave of the future for the Internet and it offers an opportunity for brands to get away from awkward, forced domain names using the popular .com extension. Get on board now and get the domain you want or risk going through it all again.