Which domain extensions are Chinese investors buying?
In a recent post, we analyzed the types of domains that currently appeal to Chinese investors (and why). But if you follow this segment of the domain market, then it's also important to consider the extensions that investors are choosing.
It's no secret that Chinese buyers are willing to pay a premium for short alpha and numeric domains, particularly those that are 4 characters or less. That includes not only simple English words like boy.com and girl.com, but also seemingly random, acronym-like combinations of consonant letters.
But it's not entirely the .com extension that is driving these investments. Chinese investors are increasingly diversifying their portfolios with other TLDs.
Let's take a look at the extensions these investors have been buying lately, and where we see these trends heading in the future.
Domain extensions currently attracting Chinese buyers:
.com domains remain very attractive to both Chinese and American investors, even as ICANN continues to new gTLDs each month.
.cc is a top-level domain for the Cocos (Keeling) Islands, which is a territory of Australia. But the extension is popular with investors because it is short, easy to remember and easy to pronounce. When short.com domains are unavailable, .cc has become an attractive alternative.
.net remains a powerhouse among the traditional TLDs. When attractive .com domain names are already taken, this tends to push up prices for their .net counterparts.
Not surprisingly, .cn – the country-code TLD for China – remains extremely attractive with Chinese buyers.
Popular New Chinese TLDS
Investors have been quick to jump on the new gTLDs as well, especially those that were proposed by Chinese companies. Some of the extensions currently generating a lot of activity include:
.top (introduced by Chinese registry Jiangsu Bangning Science & Technology Co.,Ltd.)
.wang (wang is a pinyin of 网, meaning "net" or "web." It is also a common surname in China. Pinyins are Latin-script transliterations of Chinese-script words).
Fast-growing interest in Chinese-character domains
In the months and years ahead, we see more Chinese investors moving to Chinese-character domains. In 2014, two TLDs created a lot of activity -- .在线 (“.online”) and .中文网 (.website) – after Chinese officials mandated their use for all Chinese government websites. But these extensions are only the beginning. Some other noteworthy extensions delegated by ICANN in recent months include .娱乐 (entertainment), .餐厅, (restaurant), .健康 (healthy) and .信息 (information), just to name a few. And many more Chinese-character extensions are on the way.
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