New generic top-level domains (gTLDs) are only going to make the Internet more confusing to navigate.
That is according to 52.3 percent of the 600 respondents who were queried via SurveyMonkey as part of the Sedo sponsored gTLD Awareness Report. The goal of the research was to uncover whether small to mid-size businesses (SMBs) are aware of the pending launch of new gTLDs in 2013 and whether they plan to take advantage of them. Sixty-three percent of those surveyed are unaware that new gTLDs will be available in 2013 and many do not understand what the value of these new addresses will be. Nearly half either saw no advantage or were unsure what the advantage of a new gTLD would be.
The findings tend to be particularly useful, because 63.7 percent of the respondents have purchased domain names in the past, and the survey audience understands the importance of the correct domain name to their business’ success. Even so, a resounding 94.1 percent said they were not currently planning to purchase a new gTLD, and there were very mixed results when it came to what would persuade them to purchase one (see image).
So what exactly are new gTLDs? They are brand-new domain extensions that will increase domain name choices to include descriptive strings, such as .blog, .book, .hotel, which can help in brand awareness and general memorability. Major brands, like Amazon, are feverishly applying for new gTLDs with plans to use them, but this research by Sedo makes it clear that a successful rollout of new gTLDs will be dependent on a strong education campaign that highlights why they are valuable to SMBs.
Read Sedo’s full gTLD Awareness Report, here.