In my humble opinion, the .COM craze, whether you use that term to refer to the desire to purchase .COM domains or the desire to start up new and innovative online companies, is definitely not over. If anything, it’s poised to get bigger than ever. Let’s take a look at the evidence for each, shall we?
.COM Domains – Does It Matter for SEO?
I need to make a differentiation here between Google/SEO and personal preference. From an SEO perspective, Matt Cutts has repeatedly stressed that Google doesn’t care what your domain’s extension is. As long as you have good on page and off page SEO, your domain can be anything and it will still rank highly for the keywords you choose.
Ask people in the SEO and Internet Marketing community and you’ll get a variety of opinions on this – some say that Google secretly does care, other insist it doesn’t matter, just as Matt Cutts has said. What does matter according to these people, and the reason that some people seem to think that Google penalizes non .COM domains is perception.
I’ve often said in this space that people are very funny – they tend to follow a herd mentality. Or maybe the way it was put in that old movie, Men in Black says it best:” individuals are smart. People are stupid and prone to mob mentality.” I’m paraphrasing here, but the key point is that people tend to like what others like.
There is a perceived notion from some people that .COM is more trustworthy somehow than say .tk or .jp or any of the other ccTLDs (country code top level domains) or the newer domains such as .biz and .info.
Because of this, there is a tendency of people to link more readily to a .COM than some other domain, meaning that even though Google doesn’t care, you’ll still have to work harder to rank a non .COM domain (for the record, the other two original domains, .org and .net are nearly as good).
What About Starting an Online Business?
People start up online businesses all the time and I certainly don’t see the so called .COM craze dying out anytime soon, given this fact. What is true today, which perhaps wasn’t true ten years ago is that it’s a little harder to get venture capital for a new online business. You actually have to have a real plan and a real idea for how you’re going to make money online.
The .COM craze is most certainly not over – people will continue to want to buy .COM domains whenever possible for the foreseeable future and people will continue to build businesses online for the foreseeable future. So go ahead and register you own .COM today!