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.io VS .com: What's in a Domain Name?

Ilya Dreytser | September 29, 2022

Ilya Dreytser

September 29, 2022

Choosing the right domain name for your website is a critical decision for any company. And to add to that decision, choosing a top-level domain (TLD), which is everything that follows the final dot of a domain name, has become more complicated than just adding .com to your URL. The space is getting more exciting as new brands look to use domains as a differentiator. .io, .co, .xyz, .net, .club, .inc, .eco, .app, .health, .tech… are you confused yet?

TLDs play a vital role in the DNS lookup process, and there are so many options available that the choice can be overwhelming. For years ‘.com’ was seen as the only option for consumer and enterprise businesses. Experts suggest that as the supply of ‘.com’ domains continue to dwindle, we will see the newer TLDs pick up. From Fintech Block to Blockchain startups like Mirror, .xyz has become the go-to URL ending for many web3 companies.

Choosing the .io Domain

The .io domain started as the country code TLD for the British Indian Ocean Territory. While it’s a small territory, it’s home to many large companies and organizations, including the British Indian Ocean Territory Government, the University of the British Indian Ocean Territory, and the British Indian Ocean Territory Broadcasting Corporation. However, for technology and software companies and users, IO is typically interpreted to mean InputOutput — which is what makes the .io domain such a fitting choice for a high-tech company these days. Branch.io is worth over $1 billion USD, while Card.io had a very successful exit selling to PayPal.

In the olden days of the interwebs — say 5 or 10 years ago — everyone knew that a .com TLD was a requirement, but times are changing fast, and that’s just not the case anymore. According to Google’s Guide on Traditional vs. New Domain Endings, “Using a new domain ending will not hurt your search presence.”

This was very reassuring as we debated selecting our new domain name for our company. Then we got even more good news in the form of a blog post from Hubspot, an undisputed top player in all things digital marketing, which says that “… a non-dotcom TLD will help customers remember your brand and serve as a unique differentiator,” and goes on to say that, “a tech-savvy audience, they’re probably more likely to be familiar and comfortable with a different TLD.”

So congratulations to you if you are reading this blog post on quokka.io — as it clearly means that you are a tech-savvy consumer, ready to explore all that quokka.io offers.

Quokka.io

For a technical product company, the .io domain makes perfect sense. As your friendly security company, we promise to use our blog to share relevant security content with you, our dear readers, with none of the scare tactics that are so common in our industry. We can have fun here, but we’re also very serious about bringing important security news and updates to the forefront, such as Becoming Quokka.

Now that you know some of the reasons behind the switch to an .io domain, consider one final reason that keeps coming up when looking at the benefits of foregoing a traditional .com domain: community.

It turns out that many new companies with .io domains are benefiting from a community effect, where a mere website is more than just a way to get information about a product or company. A website — or this blog, for example — are ways for companies to share relevant content with their followers and customers outside of the apparent nature of selling a product. At Quokka, our passion is to help everyone have a better experience with mobile devices, and our community is growing. We hope you join us and stay tuned for more valuable tidbits of information, right here on our very own .io domain!

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