Choosing the Best TLD for Your Site

  • by Ilona K.
Choosing the Best TLD for Your Site

Table of contents

  1. What is a TLD?
  2. Types of top-level domains
  3. The best top-level domains

A domain name is as much a business necessity as a well-structured advertising campaign. Thanks to the domain, people can easily and quickly find your website, and search algorithms can bring it to the top. It’s important to approach the choice of a domain name very carefully.

The best place to start is by choosing the best top-level domain. You may ask what that is. Keep reading to find out.

What is a TLD?

A top-level domain (TLD) is the highest level in a Domain Name System (DNS) hierarchy after the root domain. Top-level domains are also called Internet domain extensions or domain suffixes. Often, Internet TLDs represent what information a website has to offer. For example, if the URL you type ends in .blog, you’re more likely to land on someone’s personal or professional blog. Therefore, it’s important to choose the best TLD for your site.

Each TLD has an independent registry that is overseen by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). The ICANN is a non-profit organisation registered and based in California. Its tasks include maintaining the reliability and stability of the Internet, as well as coordinating technical functions related to the management of DNS (Domain name servers).

Types of top-level domains

ICANN distinguishes between 6 types of available TLDs depending on the purpose, owner, and geographic location of the website:

  • Country Code TLDs (ccTLDs). Each country has its own TLD based on the 2-letter ICO codec. For example, the US TLD is .us and the Italian TLD is .it. This TLD can only have two letters, not three.
  • Generic Top Level Domain (gTLD). These types of TLDs are called ‘generic’ for historical reasons. Currently, there are over 1,200 generic TLDs and there are different types, such as sponsored, geographic, and branded. Examples of generic TLDs are .com, .org, .info, and .net. Anyone can register these types of TLDs.
  • Infrastructure Top Level Domains (arpa). These come in only one type, arpa, which means address and routing area. They are controlled by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority.
  • Sponsored Top Level Domains (sTLDs). Private entities manage these TLDs. Examples of sponsored top-level domains are .asia, .edu, .aero, .museum, .jobs, .mobi, and .gov. These TLDs are limited and can only be assigned if certain guidelines are met.
  • Creative Top Level Domains. This type includes TLDs such as .tv for TV shows and other video projects, .name for websites that focus on a specific person, .me for personal branding projects, .expert to show the world you’ve mastered a particular niche, or .guru which is similar.
  • Internationalised Top Level Domains (IDNs). These types of TLDs can be seen in the native alphabet of the country that owns the site. That is, they can, for example, use the Cyrillic alphabet or other special characters.

You can also use TLDs such as .example, .invalid, .localhost, and .test. However, they’re designed for specific tasks, which are reflected in their names.

The best top-level domains

The choice of TLD is very important, because it will reflect your brand and type of business.Also, they affect the cost of a domain name. Let’s take a look at some of the best TLDs out there right now:


TLD .com is the most popular, recognisable, and sought-after domain extension. However, this also makes it the most expensive. Also, you may encounter difficulty in finding a free domain name in this zone. Previously, this TLD was used for commercial business, hence its name. Now it’s the first choice for almost any type of website.


The name of this TLD speaks for itself. Use it for an expert or personal blog. You can use this TLD in addition to the main website to separate the main activity from the blog. However, you shouldn’t set up an online store on a site like this, as these TLDs are intended for completely different purposes.


This TLD is designed for businesses won’t, especially for start-ups. It’s concise and easy to remember, and relatively new, giving it an advantage over .com when looking for free domain names.


This TLD is one of the best domain name extensions for software as a service (SaaS) companies and technology startups. It just so happens that this extension is similar to I/O, an abbreviation for “input/output”, which is a computer term. That’s why IT companies love it so much.


This TLD is suitable for any type of website. It competes with .com because it’s popular enough, it has more free domain names, and it’s cheaper than its direct competitor.

However, don’t forget that this TLD sounds “technical”. Choose it wisely if you don’t want to confuse your audience. It’s best to use it for IT or Web companies.


This TLD is best known for representing only not-for-profit/non-profit organisations. Therefore, the TLD won’t work well with any website. Instead, it’s best to use it for non-profit organisations, political parties, politicians, and online communities.


This TLD is self-explanatory and is most commonly used by TV and Video brands.


Like the previous extension, this TLD clearly reflects the specifics of the sites using it. It’s a good choice for audio services and podcasts.

Your domain name should reflect your brand and business, so choose your domain extension carefully. You should have the best top-level domain that will help you promote your website and be remembered by users. It is not necessary to stop at one TLD, you can buy a domain name on several if it’s necessary for your business.

Ilona K.
Ilona K.
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