It's a bird! It's a plane! It's a ... "not-com"?
With a record-number of Americans either starting or running a new business -- 27 million, according to a recent report from the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) -- a squad of digital superheroes has emerged to save the day by offering entrepreneurs countless new domain options.
Just replace Superman and Wonder Woman with digital heroes such as 'dot-agency' (.agency) and 'dot-world' (.world).
Hundreds of not-com options are rescuing start-ups and entrepreneurs who discover that their ideal 'dot-com' (.com) domain name is already be taken, or would cost millions. The struggle to secure a domain because it’s already in use has proven a consistent start-up pain that’s resulted in some ridiculous website names.
See Related: Worse and Funny Domain Names: Best of the Worst
This online not-com movement comes at a critical time for new business growth, with nearly 14 percent of working-age Americans in start-up mode -- a record high for the GEM report, which is now in its 16th year.
What's more, this growth is happening as new businesses are entering a digital ocean saturated with 'dot-com,' and that real estate is getting scarcer and scarcer.
Something's gotta give.
To the rescue, digital 'dot' superheroes. These new options -- to the right of the 'dot' -- that have been rolling out to the public since 2014 can add meaning and memorability to your website name. In fact, many of these new options are specific to industries ranging from finance (.finance) to photography (.photography). What's more, availability isn't a concern like it is with 'dot-com,' which has been around for some 30 years.
The not-com choice saved Nnenna Stella from her initial domain name regret. When the Brooklyn-based entrepreneur launched her company The Wrap Life in 2014, she couldn’t get her top-choice ‘dot-com’ domain, so she settled for ShopWrapLife.com. As soon as she discovered that a ‘dot-life’ (.life) option was available, she switched to TheWrap.life.
“It’s savvy, it’s hip and new,” she says of the domain that’s since helped to attract buzz and new business to her online shop.
Personal trainer Ron Betta experienced a similar frustration: He couldn’t get his ‘dot-com’ choice because it was already taken. But when he learned about the ‘dot-fitness’ (.fitness) option, he says it was a no-brainer.
He named his personal training studio Art of Fitness. His domain is Artof.fitness.
“I tell them there’s no ‘dot-com’ because our website went on a diet and lost it,” Betta jokes.
For business owners such as Stella and Betta, who didn't know not-com domains were even an option until they stumbled upon them, this new choice opens up a world of opportunity. Not only does it enable them to get their start-ups online, it allows them to stand out in the process.
As more and more companies come online in this era of exploding entrepreneurship, not-com domain names have become a branding tool that sparks interest and conversation, just as much as they are readily available.
And, hey, if Superman and Wonder Woman ever need a website, perhaps they'd consider aligning themselves with these superheroes of the digital world. How about www.Superman.flights and www.WonderWoman.world?
See Related: If Famous Fictional Characters Had a Website Today