.COM Vs .COM.NG
I have received calls from clients who are in need to purchase a domain but are a bit perplexed as to what domain name extension to go for. Some ask me questions like which is the best extension? or If I was to be in their position, which domain extension would I go for? reply to them is simple; what is your purpose of being online?. Some say its rude to answer a question with a question but again the truth is your domain name should go a long way in describing what the website represents. For instance, a media house should go for the .media extension and an non-profit organization should go for a .org extension.
We would not be be going into the different domain extensions as they have already been discussed here, rather we are here to discuss the two most controversial extensions which are the .com and .com.ng domain extensions.
Let’s take a quick look at some terminologies that we may be coming across with here;
A country code top-level domain (ccTLD) is an Internet top-level domain generally used or reserved for a country, a sovereign state, or a dependent territory. Example of this is the .ng extension for Nigeria, .ca for Canada e.t.c.
A top-level domain (TLD) is one of the domains at the highest level in the hierarchical Domain Name System of the Internet.The top-level domain names are installed in the root zone of the name space. It is the last part of the domain name, that is, the last label of a fully qualified domain name. Example of this is the .com extension, .net, .org e.t.c.
In the Domain Name System (DNS) hierarchy, a second-level domain (SLD) is a domain that is directly below a top-level domain (TLD).
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is a nonprofit organization that is responsible for the coordination of maintenance and methodology of several databases of unique identifiers related to the namespaces of the Internet, and ensuring the network’s stable and secure operation.
The Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA) is as an organisation, charged with the management of the Nigeria’s country code Top Level Domain Name (ccTLD), dot ng.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine’s unpaid results – often referred to as “natural,” “organic,” or “earned” results.
The domain name .com is a top-level domain (TLD) in the Domain Name System of the internet. Its name is derived from the word commercial, indicating its original intended purpose for domains registered by commercial organizations. However, eventually the distinction was lost when .com, .org and .net were opened for unrestricted registration.
The domain extension was one of the first set of top-level domains when the Domain Name System was first implemented for use on the Internet in January 1985 and can only be registered through any of ICAAN accredited registrars around the world.
The .com.ng domain extension is a second level domain (SLD) under the Nigeria ccTLD, .ng. Just like the .com domain extension, the original intended purpose for the .com.ng domains is for it to be registered by commercial organizations in Nigeria.
From the above analysis, the following facts can be drawn out:
1) Availability of Names: Since the .com domain has practically be in existence since 1985, it is clear to say that most names of your choice may not be available on the .com extension but may be available on the .com.ng extension
2) Ignorance of Web Users: Most web users just assume that all web addresses uses the .com extension. This affects the exchange of information as they end up sending mails to the wrong email addresses just cause of this same assumption. This is due to the
undisputed awareness of the extension.
3) The Nigeria Factor: Some clients assume that registering a .ng domain extension would affect the credibility of their site. But here is something you probably don’t know, NIRA does not allow a privacy protection on .ng domains.
4) SEO Best Practice: Important in international SEO, ccTLDs are the single strongest way to show search engines and users where the site originates. This means that, all things being equal, example.ng will likely rank better in a Nigeria user’s Search Engine Result Page (SERP) than example.uk or example.com.