GUEST OPINION: Startups in the software-as-a-service and technology industries have been the main adopters of the .io TLD. This top-level domain (TLD) is typically associated with the British Indian Ocean Territory, which consists of seven atolls that make up the Chagas Archipelago south of India and Diego Garcia Atoll, home to a US military post. Although the .io domain has its ccTLD roots, it has become increasingly popular in recent years. In the tech world, .io is the most well-known TLD.
If you’re looking to buy a .io domain but want to learn more about them first, then you’ve come to the right place! Let’s start by answering the basic question: What is a .io domain?
Understanding .io sites
In 1998, Levi Strauss was one of the first companies to register a .io website for reasons other than representing a specific geographic location. Levi’s has always been at the forefront of innovative marketing strategies and their success is undeniable.
.io is the top-level domain (ccTLD) for the British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT), an overseas territory of the United Kingdom. Despite this, the .io name is never limited to one country. This is due to the fact that BIOT only serves as a temporary home for US military personnel and UK government officials.
This top-level domain (TLD) is open to all users. Most .io websites have nothing to do with the country they are hosted in and anyone can register a .io website name. Moreover, most Internet users have no idea that the .io extension has any national significance.
Why is it popular among technology companies?
There are many reasons why tech startups seem to prefer .io names. Some of these reasons are:
.io Easy to apply in engineering
Since “IO” is an acronym for “input/output,” which describes how computers (and other information systems) interact with the outside world, it’s no surprise that IT organizations are drawn to this expanding domain.
As a result, when you use a .io domain name, people will immediately know that your company is related to technology. The TLD is also connected to the world of eSports and digital money, and as more tech companies adopt it, more people will get on board.
They are a popular domain hack
If you want people to remember your website URL, you can “domain hack” by making the website name part of your brand name. It can match your brand well and be easily remembered by customers.
If your company name already has a word ending in io, a .io domain extension is a great choice. You can create an address ending in rad.io for a radio station or stud.io for a recording studio.
They are more common
Most of the desired .com names are already taken because they are so widely distributed. You may need to rebrand your company or pay a significant amount to the current owner of the desired .com web page.
The likelihood that a desired name will be available and at a reasonable price on a .io website is much higher than on a .com website, despite the fact that .io pages have become more popular in recent years. Thanks to this, you can maintain your current brand image.
No additional requirements are required
Many ccTLDs are restricted to users located in or associated with that country. However, some, such as .io, are free from such restrictions. Registering a .io name does not require a physical presence in the British Indian Ocean Territory.
Websites ending in .io must be between three and sixty-three characters long and can only consist of letters, numbers, and hyphens. Also, study the terms of the agreement you will enter into with the domain registrar.
Google treats them as generic TLDs
Google and other search engines treat some ccTLDs as country data. This is why you won’t see as many results for websites that use them in Google Global Search. Fortunately, Google doesn’t penalize .io sites like this.
Your site will appear in search results for users worldwide searching for your business (or related terms), even though technically .io is a nTLD intended for use only by people from the British Indian Ocean Territory.
Although .io sites are particularly associated with the technology industry, any type of organization can benefit from their wide availability. Now that you know the answer to the question “What is a .io website?” give a chance to expand your business!