So you live in Williamsburg, work in the East Village, and your favorite hot spot is in Astoria. No matter where you go in the Big Apple, be it Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx, or Queens, there’s one common ground: a New York City digital address. In our ever-more digital lives, website addresses matter as much as, if not more than, the streets on which we walk. We have emails, blogs, local activities, and social media connecting us to the world around us every moment.
“A lot of people still haven’t realized the SEO power behind the .nyc domain.”
– Dmitry Dragilev, SEO Expert
One of the biggest digital changes that NYC experienced recently is the rollout of .nyc domains. In the last few years it has been adopted by practically every business industry in the city. Many new business start with .nyc while existing businesses switch to the shorter and easier to remember domain.
This quick behind-the-scenes adoption of .nyc as the digital home by thousands of businesses is creating a strong and, so far, hidden demand for short and relevant .nyc names.
There are clear benefits from SEO (search engine optimization) rankings that .nyc is bringing to the local businesses, making it much easier to rank on google in NY. As SEO Expert Dmitry Dragilev says in the below video, “It’s actually a tremendous marketing opportunity to have [the .nyc domain] in the URL.”
“What’s in a name?” Turns out a lot.
Whereas a catchy dot com (short for commercial) title might have hooked an audience at the turn of the century, now you’ll have to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars for a short .com domain, while some even sell for millions (and that’s if the business that owns it will sell it to you). With .nyc you can get an amazing one word domain, or a few letters, or even apartments.nyc, for a fraction of the price of a .com with a much longer and worse name. Now there is even a market place for .nyc premium domain names, named Upgrade.nyc , so if you are in the market for a great website name, this is the place to get started. As you can see by this table of .nyc domains sold, the market for these short, specific, and catchy names is alive and growing.
Right now there’s a major opportunity for New Yorkers in digital real estate, similar to that in the 1970s in NYC Real Estate. Imagine if you registered apartments.com in the 1990s: if you did, you could have sold it in 2014 for $585 million due to the success of its great business model and amazing, short and to the point name. We all have heard of Hotels.com and Booking.com, yet those names have long since been out of reach financially for the regular person. But .nyc is changing that.
“.nyc has been a game changer for marketing.”
– Dmitry Dragilev, SEO Expert
Since the domains can only be registered to NYC residents, every visitor to your .nyc website will know immediately that you and your product or service are only a train ride away.
How does .nyc change the NYC industry’s playing field?
Great examples of industries taking full advantage of .nyc domain names are real estate and coworking spaces. The above image shows how even the gathering of the New York City real estate community has used the .nyc domain to effectively create a clear and precise message in their domain RealEstateTechWeek.nyc.
Kyle Jekielek, licensed real estate salesperson of FearlessAgent.nyc, says that the domain is new and fresh and stands out more in comparison to the typical .com.
“My specialty is in [New York City]. The domain name drives home that point and builds confidence in the client.”
– Mr. Jekielek, Corcoran NYC Real Estate Agent
Instead of having a domain name that includes NYC with .com (e.g. fearlessagentnyc.com), Mr. Jekielek’s FearlessAgent.nyc shortens the URL, which makes it immediately more professional, cleaner, and catchier, and therefore more appealing to potential renters and buyers. Not to mention Google also prefers to rank sites with crisper, shorter URL names.
The uniqueness behind the domain online adds a New York flavor to the business in real life, which is vital in an industry as wide and competitive as real estate. A .nyc premium name would offer potential clients the immediate credibility of a real estate company in New York based on the name alone. ”If your company owns RealEstate.nyc, you command everyone’s attention,” said Mr. Jekielek.
Coworking spaces are also jumping on the opportunities a .nyc name grants them. The Yard initially was WorkAtTheYard.com, but quickly upgraded itself to something much shorter and more memorable once .nyc was available. In an industry as up-and-coming as coworking spaces, The Yard stands out to startups and potential clients by offering multiple locations all over New York City.
Massive NYC real estate giant Jack Resnick & Sons used to use Resnicknyc.com, but then adopted the .nyc domain, moving to Resnick.nyc. They now proudly display their .nyc domain on all of their properties, including 5,000,000 sq ft worth of commercial real estate and an estimated 1,000 apartments in NYC alone, because they know the value that a shorter, NYC-focused domain brings.
When businesses in the same industry offer similar services, something must appeal to potential consumers in order to garner clientele. What does a possible client see first but the name of a company? Is it memorable? Short? The .nyc domain offers all of the above to New Yorkers.
But .nyc isn’t just great for real estate.
Part of the charm of local shops in New York comes from their location in the City. As MISTER brand agency co-founder and managing partner Daniel Doebrich told DNAinfo, “It is something that is very important to us that [New York City] is where we take our inspiration from.” A graphic designer from one place has an intrinsically different sense of style than a graphic designer based in NYC, and this location factor is a deciding influence in landing a client and ultimately cultivating strong partnerships.
Bob Knorpp, marketing expert behind The BeanCast, said that the value of .nyc domain names resides within the exclusivity of the locale. There is only one agency like yours with only one NY address attached to it. Why wouldn’t you want the only one .nyc domain to go with it?
Even important NYC landmarks are using .nyc. One World Observatory is using OWO.nyc to be more memorable and cement themselves as an important force in the NYC digital landscape. The iconic New York City building is the heartbeat of the city, and they believe that it’s important for them to have the benefits that a .nyc domain brings.
At a recent .nyc auction being held by NYC’s government in partnership with Neustar, RealEstate.nyc was bought by an investor for over $21,000, and felt very happy with his investment. Similarly, Shop.nyc was sold for over $33,000, and Fashion.nyc was sold for over $37,000. Opportunities to grab a short and unique .nyc are abundant.
But what is .nyc exactly and how did it start?
On October 8, 2014, Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration announced the availability of .nyc domain names for sale. The concept behind NYC’s new, location specific domain was to brand organizations, startups, artists, and more as the native New Yorkers they are on the internet while making them instantly more SEO friendly for localized searches.
The original sale of .nyc top level domains (TLDs) occurred in 2014 when investors purchased names of their choice. If multiple investors sought the same name, an auction occurred. Names such as condominiums.nyc and marijuana.nyc went for $20K and $60K, respectively. By May 2015, over 75,000 .nyc domains were bought. This means over 75,000 New Yorkers with physical addresses opted to grow their personal or business’s brand to include a unique, NY feel.
“Whether you’re a small business, or an established brand, there’s no better place to launch and build your venture online, than .nyc. With the release of these new premium domains, New Yorkers across the five boroughs will all have the opportunity to own and develop a piece of the City’s most valuable digital real estate.”
– Jeff Merritt, Director of Innovation, City of New York
As of today, the .nyc TLD is the highest ranking location-based domain in the world. The next locale-focused domains closest to .nyc are .london (ranking almost 10 below), .berlin (almost 15), and .tokyo (over 20). Furthermore, just under 80,000 users have registered a .nyc domain name. This number will only climb in the upcoming weeks with the nearing auction for premium names. Once those are purchased, only more and more businesses will buy more domain names as users see the their credibility and legitimacy expand due to a better and cleaner brand, shortened URL and greater SEO value. The .nyc domain will assist everyone using it or searching for a service, product, or artist in New York by allowing Google to sift through other, more general domains.
Even if you don’t have a business, firm, or agency but you’re looking to expand your brand and culture to the internet, a .nyc domain will give you immediate exposure that will help advance you to your goals faster than a .com or .net ever could.
By going to ownit.nyc, you can search for a domain name of your choice and purchase it via various registrars.