When It Comes To Your Internet Name - Is it www.Yourname.Gone?
What’s In A (Domain) Name?
If you do an Internet search on one of the many domain name registration websites that pepper the Internet, you will probably find that most, if not all, of your options are already registered to someone else. This is especially true if your business name is, shall we say, not uncommon.
There is, it would seem, a great deal of confusion surrounding the whole issue of Internet names vs business names. Many people mistakenly think that, by registering their business name as an Internet address, or URL, (Uniform Resource Locator), that they are somehow protected from competitors being able to use that name, and to an extent that is true. But, in fact, it is not entirely so!
Why? Well, there is a small matter of the extension to the URL, which takes the form of a few letters placed after the final dot in the address, e.g.
"www.fredsmithcars.com" - where the “.com” is the extension.
Technically, and very confusingly, this extension is known as the top level domain, that is to say, the .com is the “top level domain” in the above level and “fredsmithcars” is the subdomain.
So What’s The Dot.Problem?
The problem is with poor old Fred's name! There's probably more than one fredsmithcars in the world, and it is for this reason that “country code top level domains” (ccTLD’s) come in very handy.
The country code top level domain enables fredsmithcars in the USA to coexist, on the Internet at least, with fredsmithcars in the UK or, indeed, anywhere else in the world as there are country-specifc top level domains like .co.uk available almost everywhere.
The UK business in this instance would take the URL www.fredsmithcars.co.uk as opposed to fredsmithcars.com. Two very similar names but two totally different businesses with different Internet addresses.
So, that problem is solved isn't it? Well, actually no. There is still a teeny problem to overcome however because, in reality, there may be more than one fredsmithcars in the UK but only one of them can have the .co.uk extension. What about the others, what of those who were a little bit too late?
In the UK, traditionally, if you missed the boat with the .com version of your desired domain name then you could revert back to the .co.uk. After that it was a case of going down the list in order of preference choosing from, .info, .net, .org and so on. However, even that option wasn’t always available as businesses often registered all of the variations of their name in order to protect their brand. If you wanted a similar name then you often didn’t even have the choice of a .info or .org due to this multiple registration policy which is still promoted by some domain registration companies in the form of “bundles” whereby you register all of the variations in one transaction..
Now, however, there is another choice that is closer to the original target of obtaining a .com or a .co.uk version of your Internet name, it’s called the uk.com and it’s available now.
UK.com domains are managed and sold by an organisation known as CentralNIC and they make these domains available on a country by country basis via a network of over 1500 registrars worldwide. We’ve included information below as to how you can obtain more information about acquiring a uk.com top level domain for your organisation.
It’s The Biz!
Whilst .info, .org and .net top level domains all have their place, nothing sounds quite as satisfying as an Internet domain that ends in .”com”. It sounds businesslike and imparts a certain kudos upon the organisation that uses it.
Now, even if you missed the boat with the .com version of your desired name, you can acquire the uk.com option. Its the best of both worlds as it ends in .com and it has UK in it. If you didn’t get your first choice with .com this is an option that you should consider very seriously. Don’t delay your decision too long however, pretty soon all of these will be gone too!