I have a website with a new TLD. I am not trying to advertise here, but listing the domain names is the only way I know how to articulate this question.

I have both, theboss.host and thebosshost.com registered. I chose to use the former, the shorter version for my website.

I am wondering if potential visitors have an aversion to the newer TLDs. Should I just go with the .com even though it is much longer? Are there any SEO implications of using the more obscure domain extensions?

I think my question is more anthropological/psychological than technical. I would love to hear from anyone with experience or has a solid opinion on the matter.

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    Thank you both for your expert opinions. I am switching my domain over to the .com TLD. I remember I used to think of the .net and .org as the "backroads" of the Web and .com as the paved road. I guess there is some truth in that. Jan 19, 2019 at 16:57
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    Hi Keith, if you feel your question has been answered, please don't forget to mark one of the answers as "accepted" by clicking the gray checkmark to the left of the answer. If your question hasn't been fully answered, please elaborate so we can further help! Thanks! Jan 27, 2019 at 1:15

4 Answers 4


If we're to go by this 2016 survey, general consumers do not trust the new gTLD domain extensions:

We found that roughly half of consumers are uncomfortable visiting websites ending in new domains, and only 9% of consumers feel comfortable doing so.

In terms of their overall security, almost half of respondents report feeling less secure online thanks to the introduction of the new gTLDs. This figure is slightly higher than last year too, showing that the wider domain industry hasn’t yet done a good enough job to educate the public and organisations about the benfits on offer.

Trust in the new Internet survey 2016 discussion paper - nccgroup

However if your website is targeting more savvy or technical users, it stands to reason that they will be more familiar with the new extensions, understand how they work, and know that they usually don't imply any reduction in trust.

The .io domain is a great example of a "gTLD" that is often used to target tech-savvy users. While technically not really a gTLD it does function like one in practice - standing for "input/output" - and it is popular among the tech startup community.

Of course it's 2019 now so people may be more familiar with the new gTLDs than they were three years ago. But they likely haven't yet attained the same level of perceived trust as .com, .net, etc.

As elbrant touched on, it kind of kills the mood when you gotta bust out your pocket notebook to give a mini-lecture on DNS resolution in the elevator. Often times it's easier to just say "our website is [blank].com".

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    Another quote from same report: "But there is variation between the trust levels of different names. ‘.brand’ – domains that are brand specific such as .hsbc – and ‘.bank’ engender the most trust. This suggests that consumers feel safest with group terms that suggest a legitimate community, one that is closed and explicit." (the last sentence looks to me more like speculation than any hard fact backed by a study) Jan 21, 2019 at 15:12

Explaining to someone that your site is at anything(hyphen/dash/minus)youwant.com became a nightmare (for me, personally). Avoid using anything that will put you in a position where you have to explain your DNS to a potential site visitor. It negatively affects traffic flow. Telling people your website is at domain.com requires no further information. Everyone understands it, it's comfortable. .net, .org, and some others are commonplace as well. Use the most logical domain name (preferrably with a more familiar extension).

Using .host makes sense to you. But there's a good chance that seeing it on your marketing materials will make everyone do a double take. Tell some of your friends what your domain will be... do they need an explanation for a site called mydomain.host (with no .com)?

That should tell you all you need to know.

  • If he is actually hosting something, then using the host. TLD would make sense. Otherwise it's probably a really bad idea to use it at all. Jan 19, 2019 at 4:24

if potential visitors have an aversion to the newer TLDs.

It is a very subjective question.

I would like to offer a more nuanced approach than the answers already given.


This is a classical chicken and egg problem: people are afraid of new TLDs (please do not say "extension") and/or do not use them because no one (or not enough critical mass) uses them... and no one uses them (or are afraid to use them) because people are afraid to use them.

First movers are at a disadvantage... except of course they get the opportunity to register domain names that may be long unavailable in legacy TLDs.

Do note however that the ICANN new TLD program started to be alive in 2012,
with new TLDs added at end of 2013. This is now old in term of Internet time. So the 2016 study may or may not be still relevant today.

TLD relevance

How often does it happen that you need to spell out your domain name? I guess not so much. It is true that there is the empirical radio test (see https://www.domainsherpa.com/domain-name-dictionary/radio-test/ and https://www.namecheap.com/blog/domain-name-radio-test/) and many cases of wrong choices of domain names that can be read differently (see some lists at https://www.boredpanda.com/worst-domain-names/ or https://www.shoutmeloud.com/worse-funny-domain-names-websites.html or https://funnyshit.com.au/bad-domain-names.html)

This clearly shows I think that you already can go very wrong even in the perimeter of a single TLD and even a legacy well-known one.

But, do you really yell out your domain name for people to come on your website? I guess not, they probably come because of some hyperlink somewhere, or some ad that you bought. So in all these cases people just click on a link, I doubt most of them even look at the URL, and in which case I say that the TLD does not matter so much.

TLD acceptance

There is also a little negative side effects of new gTLDs but in fact it happened even before the new round of 2012: there is a lot of broken software out there that is built on false assumptions such as "all gTLDs are 3 characters" or "no digits in a TLD", etc.

Often there is even a list of TLD, and not being carefully maintained it won't of course know about new gTLDs and hence you get rejections in some online forms when asking for your email or such.

Note that this bad fate is also shared by IDNs, that is domain names using other characters than from the ASCII repertoire and people then speaking about "special" characters and all difficulties they bring.

For more information on these subjects, there is a working group inside ICANN devoted to it: https://uasg.tech/

New registries

The other question one may want to ask before choosing the domain name is: can I trust the registry?

Because, in new gTLDs, some registries did already disappear but mostly brands. Have a look at this page for a list of terminations that happened: https://www.icann.org/resources/pages/terminated-registry-agreements-2016-03-02-en

One may argue that .COM being as big as it is will never fail. Then of course the history has plenty examples where even the biggest companies fail in some way, without being backed up by the government or equivalent and hence disappear.

So, like any non-trivial choice, this one is never clear cut in neither side, but it is a point to take into account (whose solution could be for a big business to have multiple domains registered in multiple TLDs, and while using normally just one, having everything in place to switch to another one if needed; it may not be because of registry termination, it could as well be because of technical problems, etc.). For new gTLDs, note that ICANN has a whole program in place where EBEROs (Emergency Back-End Registry Operators) are on standby to save any failing registry and transition DB content so that the domains registered under the TLD continue to work, hence not harming current registrants and services built on top of the TLD.


To keep it to the point. .com or Never TLDs are equally good for SEO as well as marketing. But everything has pros and cons. I am going to list the Pros and Cons of both TLDs to make sure which performs best.

.com (Pros and Cons)


  • People are more likely to write ".com" than any other TLDs.
  • .com is widely recognized extention which even Kids do recognize. Like i would say Cnn DOT COM not CNN DOT NET.
  • A person would be able to memorize your URL just by first visit.


  • Tough to find the domain names you want to get.
  • A huge amount of domain names have been bought and parked and avaible for resale for insane amount of fee.
  • You might end up changing name due to non avaliblity of Domain name in .com extention.

Newer TLDs (Pros and Cons)


  • You can get your domain as per your desired keyword or brand name.
  • After .com extention will get filled, Newer TLDs will add more value to the internet.
  • Not immediately, but very soon never TLDs will be full just like .com has gotten full.


  • It is less recognized than .com
  • It will take many years for people to get used to of newer domain verbally just like they did with .com
  • It is tough to memorize the domain name as the user will end up memorizing YourDomain(Dot)host as YourDomain(Dot)com
  • Internet users see more comfort in a Dot Com site than a Dot Host or any other newer TLD sites while shopping.


I'm glad to know that you have both the domains, but i will prefer you to go for .com as it is going in your favour and has the domain name matching your brand. Keep the newer TLD aside, i would still say work hard on .com extention. Peace out!

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