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Network Solutions and Register.com Slot .Co Second

Big registrars pushing .co as next best thing to .com.

Last month Go Daddy created quite a buzz by briefly changed its default domain name search parameter to .co.

Although Go Daddy and its competitors continue to offer .com first, two large retail domain registrars are making a significant push to get customers to register .co.

Both Network Solutions and Register.com are promoting .com as a second choice to .co, with Network Solutions even promoting .co above other domain extensions you’ve selected.

Here’s a screenshot from Network Solutions. I searched for xyzdomain and selected the default .com and .net TLDs. .Com is unavailable, but Network Solutions slots (and auto selects) .co along with .net, even placing it ahead of the available .net.

If the .com is available, Network Solutions still slots .co as number two but doesn’t auto select it.

At Register.com .co is called out as an alternative whenever your .com isn’t available. The site pitches the domain as an alternative to .com, saying .co is short for “company”. Alternative TLDs are far down the page:

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  1. Greg says

    I love that Network Solutions and Register.com are actively encouraging cybersquatting.

    They should start suggesting “but wwwxyzdomain.com is available!”

  2. Greg says

    Is xyzdomain.com a generic domain? What if it was a well developed site? I’m sure you can see the issue with typo TLDs like .co and .cm when a company is actively suggesting that people register typos.

  3. M. Menius says

    .co has become a sort of “test ground” for ICANN’s new tld proposal. All these registrars are experimenting with .co to determine whether consumers will gravitate to an unknown tld if they (the registrars) give it high exposure on their registration site.

    They want to know how much true appetite there is for new extensions.

    Based on my observation, there are two distinct paths for significantly increasing a tld’s mass popularity. One is when large, well-known companies adopt a new tld thus legitimizing it in the marketplace.

    The second path is when a number of smaller, local companies establish a “grass roots” level of interest that just keeps migrating outward like widening concentric circles, i.e. .BIZ and .US being used by a wide variety of modest sized companies.

  4. Em says

    @ Greg

    It’s called free enterprise and the right to run a business. If you deem it cybersquatting, I suggest that is your desire to see it that way, for whatever reason.

    @ Brad

    The flavor thing is old and tired. Business is always evolving. Even if they don’t keep it at no. 2, why shouldn’t they experiment?

  5. Alex says

    Yes, the flavor of the month is quite old and tired. In fact, .CO has been the “flavor of the month” for many months now, thus I suppose it is the flavor of 2010, and it is slated to be the “flavor” of 2011 and beyond. Looks like people simply enjoy the flavor of a .CO.

    .CO has garnered tremendous support from well respected companies, such as Twitter, Overstock, GoDaddy, and yes, now Network Solutions and Register.com. In fact, .CO will also be featured in an upcoming Super Bowl commercial and it is very wonderful to see this type of support and it will help .CO to garner mainstream awareness.

    Lets face it, the .com’s are largely registered but companies continue to evolve, and new start ups launch in the masses daily. What should we say to them? “Sorry, you should have started your company 10 years ago – but hey, you can always get a 20 character domain name with numbers and hypens that no one will remember.”

    I think not. There needs to be a quality option and .CO is certainly one.

  6. Zak says

    @ Brad

    Flavor of the month.

    100% Correct … HYPE!
    the team of bozos above
    think that if they talk up .Co on a blog
    it will change anything .Co
    don’t waste your BUCKS greenhorns buy the kids some shoes,for Xmas!

  7. Zak says

    @ Robert Preston

    I love my .CO domains. They look cool, I mean real cool looking on the web URL address.

    So Robert, when will you turn fourteen???

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