Very recently the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) announced that the bidding of gTLDs (generic top-level domains) were open and that the purchase of web domains will be completely unrestricted.
Essentially this allows anyone to create a “dot-anything” as their web domain for whatever they desire. Maybe you want to add that extra impetus to your company signature: “http://www.gaurdian.newspaper” for example, or http://www.oprah.talk.
There have been plenty of companies over the years excited to register their domain names on the web, only to find that the hosting of their site is already dedicated to some small-time blogger or band that hasn’t played since the early nineties. However these problems are not necessarily a thing of the past.
As mentioned above, to the man-on-the-street this news is a call to action to get signed-up through whatever sign-up process is involved in acquiring a new gTLD. No one would expect the acquisition to be free, but with the price of one of these web domains reaching $185,000 (excl. all additional admin fees) mikesplumbing.pipes probably won’t be seen in a navigation bar anytime soon.
There is a belief amongst SEO pundits that this announcement and the resultant frenzy will render competitors disarmed and that the acquiring of customised web domains will go a very long way to ensuring that all SEO worries are extinguished. There is however a long way to go before this can be seen.
The most influential brands and Internet moguls have registered a combined total of 1,930 new domain strings and the suffixes range from the most reasonable to the most bizarre.
Google were obviously one of the most active participants submitting 100 requests, which included derivatives of their own service offerings (dot-Google; YouTube; Gmail etc.) but also more unusual ones, requesting: dot-play; pet; fun; baby and a whole lot more. Yahoo surprisingly only bid on dot-yahoo and dot-Flickr, whereas Apple only bid on it’s own name.
In what is set to result in a few legal tussles, Google and Amazon have bid on 20 identical domains in their pursuit for web one-upmanship. A few of these strings include: music, search, free, game, spot, store, you and drive.
This announcement only settles the process of application for the new web domains, but according to ICANN, the official allocation of gTLDs could take months or even years. SEOs eager for these changes to make waves might be disappointed about the length of time search engines take to grant credibility to the new web domains, whether it be recognising small concerns or major online authorities.