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The Power of Top-Level Domains

By: Kelly Leighton on in

In this increasingly digital world, it’s easy for a business to get lost online—especially brokerages and agents in the saturated real estate market.

Many industries, companies and individuals have adopted top-level domains to raise awareness, build recognition and clearly identify what they do.

The National Association of Realtors®, realizing the potential of top-level domains to deliver credibility and recognition for their members, as well as further the Realtor® brand, purchased .realtor™ and .realestate. Reserved only for Realtors®, .realtor™ enables members to create unique email and web addresses, like chicagoanne.realtor, that instantly identify who they are. These domain addresses also associate Realtors® with the professionalism and credibility that comes with being a member of NAR. Similarly, .realestate domains, like phillyhomes.realestate, forge stronger connections with homebuyers, sellers and anyone involved in the real estate industry. Simply put, .realtor™ and .realestate domains are a surefire way to own your brand online.

Together, the .realtor™ and .realestate top-level domains are designed to help brokers and agents market themselves, their businesses, their listings and their vast array of expertise and services in creative new ways.

But what are top-level domains and how can they help clients find you online?

In 1985, the first five publicly available top-level domains were launched: .com, .org, .net, .edu and .gov. Companies and individuals saw the value in owning their own domain address in the same way that a company owned a building or an individual owned a physical address they called home. A website is a home online, so why not own the address? There was also value in prospecting these early domains—buying valuable addresses to sell to the highest bidder—because of their limited number. Over the next 30 years, these domains were scooped up by anyone who wanted one until few were left.

As a result of their initial popularity, generic top-level domains became available to the public in 2013, covering everything from .abb to .zw. Companies like Google and Amazon scooped up hundreds of top-level domains for the various arms of their businesses. When the dust settled, just over 1,500 unique, top-level domains for internet addresses were created including brand domains and topical domains like .attorney or .shop.

Go to get.realtor and claim a domain that fits your business, interests and expertise. Find your thing, and then tell the world about it. The .realtor domain is free for the first year, one per individual Realtor®.

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