Ordering the Domain Universe
by Peter Girard
New York is more popular than India, but less popular than China. Tennis is better than soccer, but not as good as football. People want music more than they want TV or movies. Real estate is more valuable than stocks.
These are indisputable truths, assuming that interest in names within new gTLDs definitively establishes the relative value of domain properties. This may be a dubious assumption, but the demand for specific names in .info, .biz, and .pro offers an interesting view of what perspective domain registrants consider desirable. Call it a DNS wish list.
Top 12 Subject Groups
with requests per top 500
For example, those expressing interest in the new gTLDs wished, more than anything else, for sex: Sex.info, Sex.biz, even Sex.cpa.pro. The name appeared on more wish lists than any other, and by this logic, is therefore more valuable than any other.
Of course, the nature of the gTLDs and an uncontrolled sample of would-be registrants may skew these results, but they show a form of relative value nonetheless—one that can be applied to the namespace at large, especially when the new gTLD space is regarded as frontier whose settlers already know the landscape they plan to enter.
Top 10 Overall Names
We used a sample of the 500 most-requested names within .info, .biz, and .pro, combined, to gauge popularity by name and by group. In order to gain the most universal categorization, we based group definitions as closely as possible on the DMOZ Website directory project, whose open structure encourages wide adoption across the Web. Twelve groups accounted for more than 90% of the list (456 names), including the addition of a ‘true generics’ group for words like ‘my,’ ‘best,’ and ‘the.’ We also compared the list to Word Tracker’s report of the Web’s top 500 keywords to gauge similarity.
Top 10 Sports Names
with overall rank