30 Years of .com

Sunday, March 15th marked the 30-year anniversary of the first ever registered .com domain.

On March 15, 1985, the now defunct computer company Symbolics, Inc. registered symbolics.com for a total of zero dollars. To give you a sense of this particular point in technological history, Microsoft Word was introduced for Macintosh computers, the mobile phone measured 13 x 1.75 x 3.5 inches, and Mark Zuckerberg turned one year old in 1985. Though the company Symbolics no longer exists, the website lives on in an ever-changing online landscape.

Thirty years after the birth of .com, domains are more than just a simple means of redirecting intelligible phrases to IP addresses. Today, domains reveal a lot about a brand’s identity. In 2014 itself, hundreds of niche domain endings such as .beer, .farm, and .nyc were registered. Several New York-based organizations and events have already capitalized on the new citywide .nyc domain. Such sites as the official page for Times Square New Year’s Eve, Pace University, and the Soho Grand Hotel have all taken on the .nyc ending.

While in the past, only organization, government, and countrywide sites have received their own domains (.org, .gov, and .de, for example), the emergence of these topic-specific domains indicates a shift to a highly categorized internet. People, companies, and organizations can now adopt domain endings that appropriately point to an exact industry, interest, or location. Perhaps the most fiercely sought-after domain this year has been the .app ending.

Amazon, Google, and other web giants showed interest in operating the .app domain, with Google eventually winning the auction in a record-breaking $25 million purchase. This speaks volumes about the future of the app industry. What was once a supplemental tool may become predominant in an increasingly mobile world.

Digital marketing strategies must evolve at the same pace as these digital trends. A brand’s online presence in today’s digital world must amount to more than just a website. Devices such as the forthcoming Apple Watch are counting on the prevalence of apps, which provides countless opportunities for brands to expand their digital presence through mobile applications. At SKDK, we encourage our clients to drive their message in as many ways and on as many platforms as possible. Keeping with the latest digital trends not only drives your message to new audiences, but it also reflects your own digital expertise.