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What are the different types of domain name extensions (TLD)?

Types of domain name extensions or TLDs

Domain or TLD extensions are letters that follow the end point of a website URL. The most common extensions are . com, . org and .net. There are over 1500 TLDs today, some of which are much rarer and unusual.

The choice of TLD can have a major impact on the referencing and credibility of a website. Between us, which would you choose as an accountant between and

Search engines also have a preference for more credible and conventional domain extensions. Here are the different types of domain extensions and an overview of their degree of credibility.

Generic extensions

Generic extensions were the first to appear on the internet when the domain name system (DNS) replaced IP addresses.

These extensions were intended to define the nature and use of the website. Initially, the choice was quite limited and general.

However, in 2011, ICANN allowed the emergence of new more specialized generic TLDs. However, these are not subject to its authority, unlike the former.

Extensions are therefore subdivided into two very distinct categories of TLDs.

Traditional generic TLDs

Original generic extensions are still considered to be the most credible, and they remain the most popular.

The most common is of course . com, but others like . net and . org are also very common.

Traditional generic extensions are the most credible authority on the web. They represent the choice recommended by experts for your website.

Generic "new" TLDs

Since 2011, a host of new "generic" extensions have appeared. These fall under a variety of independent registries, not ICANN.

The credibility of these extensions is therefore not the same as traditional TLDs in the eyes of search engines.

In many cases, they also seem unreliable to Internet users. We can think of . cool, . party, . pizza, or .sexy.

It is extensions is the responsibility of little-known private authorities and can harm the referencing and success of your website.

Sponsored Extensions

When ICANN changed the TLD rules in 2011, some more credible authorities also came forward to demand their own extensions.

Unlike other new TLDs, they are generally associated with credible state authorities.

Common examples include . gov and . edu, used by government and school sites. Other sponsored extensions apply to less public sectors, such as . mil designed for the armed forces.

These sponsored extensions have varying credibility. After all, . gov and . museum are not quite equivalent.

Geographic extensions

These extensions are not intended to indicate the use or nature of the site, but rather its geographical location. They include . fr, . eu, . ca, and . us, but also a host of more obscure local variations.

These extensions have been in existence since well before 2011, but do not come under ICANN. They are managed by local authorities, such as AFNIC in France or CIRA in Canada.

Some of them are fairly well administered, but others are more problematic. For example, TLD . tk associated with the Tokelau archipelago is notoriously used by pirates and illegal sites, due to the laxity of local authorities.

The credibility of geographical extensions is therefore highly variable.

Choose your domain name

If you are looking for a domain name, we invite you to consult our very competitive offers. You will see that the different authorities responsible for different TLDs charge very variable rates, which explains the variations in our prices.

Updated on: 24/02/2023

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