As .nyc nears its 8th birthday, it’s hard to ignore how widely used the domain ending is, once you start looking.
So why has it been so strongly adopted and embraced by New Yorkers? With over 65,000 businesses and individuals registering their name with the .nyc ending – the demand and appeal is evident, and the reasons for registering a .nyc domain are as varied as the people living here.
To kick this off, below are the top 10 reasons why you should register a .nyc domain name today.
.NYC domains are for New York businesses, organizations and residents only. Community is built into the namespace and adoption has been authentic and passionate like New Yorkers themselves – yes, New Yorkers have been known to be a little passionate.
When folks see your .nyc domain printed on a business card, or vinyl cut and stuck on the side of a van, or on a sign in your store’s window, they know a little more about you. They know you are tenacious, resilient and that you love your city. You are also showing that you are part of a club. A club that puts your New York City customers, clients, audience and visitors first.
Have you ever checked to see if a .com is available for you to register only to found it’s either in use or it’s for sale for $1,000,000+? Well no .nyc domains are selling for over a million dollars. Sure there are some .nyc domains that have a premium price ($500 to $5k) however, most .nycs are available now for $20 to $30 depending on where you register them (Hello.co, PorkBun.com, GoDaddy.com) and there are occasional offers where you can pick up .nyc domains for $9.99 or less.
Some businesses are stuck with a longer .com domain, or are forced to include a dash “-“, or a number – but what does that say about your brand? What does it say about you and how much you care about your customers – having to remember longer and more confusing web addresses?
With 150 million .com domains registered, you can expect registering cat.com, blue.com or even bluecat.com to be impossible unless you have very deep pockets. With .nyc domains there are only 65,000 registered so any name you may be interested in registering, is either available (~$20) or a premium ($500 to $5k).
Similarly to the community benefits, not everyone can register .nyc domain names. While there is a great argument that the nexus requirement should be dropped in future – which would certainly and instantly increase the demand for .nyc domains by allowing anyone in the world to register a .nyc domain name – for the time being .nyc is only for NYC businesses, organizations and residents.
By using your .nyc domain on signage, as a web forwarder to a social media page and as part of your email address (e.g. firstname.lastname@example.org) you are signaling to the world that you are part of the exclusive club.
Have I mentioned price already?! Yes, .nyc domains are affordable. More affordable than most .coms you’d ever want to own.
$20 to $30 is the standard price for .nyc domains (depending on where you register them).
Occasional $9.99 deals (or less) at certain registrars.
Even top tier, premium .nyc domains are usually available for $500 to $5,000 max. Search for your .nyc domain now and see if you can pick it it up for $20 and if doesn’t appear to be available, type it in to your browser and visit the .nyc website to see if it’s advertised for sale.
Whoever said “Looks don’t matter”? Answer: No-one
We’ve seen trends of businesses dropping letters in their brands (e.g. flickr.com), adding letters to their brands (e.g. fiverr.com) or when forced to, use a dash in their name (e.g. body-fit.com) and in each of these cases, visitors have to not only do a double take, but they are left with the impression that the website name is not only distracting, but inferior.
.nyc domains offer businesses and individuals the opportunity to get a perfect fit domain name without the distraction, inferiority and shame of registering and using a butchered version of their ideal brand in a .com
In the photo example of nolitamarket.nyc above, there is nothing distracting at all. There is the brand and purpose (wrapped into the “Nolita Market” string) and there is the location, customer base and community it serves (represented in the “.nyc” string).
As people desire shorter and more meaningful and memorable domain names, registering, using and proudly promoting your .nyc domain name is simply a no-brainer.
6. Search Engine Optimization
While the nature of search engines have changed drastically since the start of the century, their main purpose (beyond selling ads and tracking our every move) is to organize the world’s digital information.
As the internet naming system developed with .com, .net and .org others, countries each had their own “country code”. The United Kingdom has .co.uk, South Korea has .co.kr, Australia has .com.au and Canada has .ca. The geographic ending matters not only to the communities the websites serve, but also they matter as they’re another signal to search engines.
The truth is search engines, like Google.com, remain a bit of a black box in terms of fathoming how the ranking system works. Google initially developed a reputation based system called “Pagerank” which gave websites a score between 0 and 10, and monitored the “value” of a website. A website’s Pagerank was believed to be impacted by factors such as on-page keywords and content, number and value of outbound links from the website and more importantly the number and value of inbound links to the website from other websites. So receiving an inbound link from a university’s (.edu or .ac.uk) website or from a government’s website (.gov or .gov.uk), would be a boosting factor to the receiving website’s Pagerank, and therefore search engine position when people are searching for related terms.
Nowadays with the explosion of data, the signaling factors to Google are most likely in the thousands and may include less obvious metrics such as time spent on the website (through Google Chrome monitoring) or time reading the search results before clicking on a result further down the page (suggesting it should be higher).
Therefore, given the thirst for data and signals that search engines have, having “.nyc” in your website name is almost certainly a significant factor as your site gets indexed and is presented in search results. If you live, work or have a business or organization in NYC, and your customers are searching for causes or things that you are promoting, producing or selling – it’s pretty likely that Google will apply a weight, to websites containing the “.nyc” ending – knowing that there’s a higher likelihood of relevance.
Why does .nyc exist? Why would you want to register a .nyc domain name?
In my mind registering and using a .nyc domain name shows that you are a proud New Yorker, that you want to show the world you have a connection to this great city and that you are not worried about being a little different.
If you are a business, the purpose of using a .nyc for your web address is to show your customers that you are a part of their community and that you can be trusted, and that you aren’t going anywhere. You are rooted in NYC.
Owning a .nyc communicates that you can embrace change, especially when embracing that change gives you the benefit of a more semantic and meaningful online name.
8. Stature and Reputation
Traditionally NYC government agencies have used “.nyc.gov” domain endings to signify authority, trust and the authoritative web address endings have been a signal to visitors since the early internet. Over time .nyc.gov became the badge for a reputable .NYC agency website. For example the NYC Department of Education has used schools.nyc.gov as their website for many years. But we’re also seen a transition from these government agencies, and there’s good reason for it too.
healthscreening.schools.nyc is the web address that almost a million students and teachers use daily upon admission into a school building. Notice the transition from .nyc.gov to .nyc in this case, suggesting that the City of New York appreciate the shorter, more memorable “.nyc” web address ending, while still understanding that it still signifies trust, authority, positive reputation and community.
Outside of government agencies, the reputational benefit of association to a .nyc domain is still true. In fact the majority of the 65,000 registered and in use .nyc domain names are not related to NYC government agencies and yet each of them still receive an improved perceived stature over similarly named websites in a less relevant ending like .com
An added bonus to owning a great keyword .nyc domain is that it can appreciate in value. As with everything that is in demand and in short supply, there are opportunities to profit from investing. While it may take time for the appreciation in value I’ve personally flipped a few keyword domains in a relatively short amount of time. Waffle.nyc and Waffles.nyc were each $20 registrations and after a few months I sold the pair for $1,000. Even more exciting was the $20 purchase of carousel.nyc that I later flipped for $7,000. If investing is the route you’d like to explore further, I would advise you get your toes wet slowly so as not to register too many domains and be stuck with the yearly renewal costs. I’d also advise some self exploration and learning via the Domain Name Wire podcast and blog and the NamePros.com forum.
Personally, the return I’ve made from investing in .nyc domain names, is from flipping names in the $500 to $5,000 price range and it is extremely satisfying replying to businesses who negotiate a fair price where both parties are happy, and these amazing domain names are put to great use.
10. Competition and Current Usage
A significant number of the .nyc domains that are registered are being actively used. That is more than can be said for domains in other domain endings like .com or .net. Why is that? Well, not only are there fewer domain investors or speculators in the .nyc namespace, but as mentioned earlier, the community value that .nyc offers registrants is real and has attracted individuals, organizations and businesses who really want to use their .nyc web addresses for their causes, products and services.
This authentic usage of .nyc has further added value to owners of .nyc web addresses in reputation, credibility, trust and the understanding that this is a site rooted in NYC that isn’t going anywhere. What does this have to do with competition? Well, if any of your competitors are operating a .nyc web address it’s important to understand that they are benefiting from the improved credibility, reputation boost, additional trust that using a .nyc domain brings.
So if you aren’t using a .nyc domain and you primarily cater to a NYC market, you MUST at least consider registering your brand, product or service name in a .nyc domain – that is unless staying behind the competition is the goal.
So there you have it, ten simple yet powerful reasons why you should register a .nyc domain name today. If you needed to see who else is currently using them, why not take a look in our .nyc business directory, browse the photo gallery (also shown below) or see the .nyc site listings in Google.