Top level domains, or TLDs, are the last part of a domain name, like ‘.com’. Probably a bit late for most of us, but there’s been some clarification from Google on the use of ‘generic’ and ‘country specific’ website TLDs. As we’d expect, country specific TLDs such as ‘.uk’ (including ‘.co.uk’) are recommended for businesses targeting a particular region, and generic ones including ‘.com’ are still preferred to indicate worldwide website applicability.
I’ve never been a fan of websites that hijack an unrelated country’s TLD to make a ‘clever’ domain name (such as tvtim.es or something like that). This confirms that’s a bad idea.
Google has also suggested that some TLDs are overrun with spam, and using one of those could be a bad idea – so stick to the tried and tested ones. I use novelty TLDs if they’re cheap and if I’m not bothered with ranking in the search engines (e.g. for limited-time projects).
Dot co dot uk
The .uk domain is nearly ten years old now; before that, we were forced into a hierarchical structure which was not adopted in other countries (e.g. .co.uk, .org.uk, .ac.uk, etc). However, old habits die hard, and it’s surprising how many new domains which aren’t companies are still being registered in this country as .co.uk.
I’d definitely just go for .uk nowadays if the domain wasn’t for a business, although for £10 a year, it’d be worth having the corresponding .co.uk registered too. I’ve switched over a couple of non-company sites from .co.uk to .uk and it’s been painless, with no detrimental effects. And drop the ‘www’ too, if you’re able. It’s painful in 2023 to hear websites referred to as “double-you double-you double-you dot whatever dot co dot uk” when they could just be “whatever dot uk”.