Local Domain Vs International Domain – Which Is Better?
When you register a domain name for your personal or business website for the first time, the registrar will ask you what kind of domain you want to use.
A domain or domain extension is what comes after your businesses name on your URL such as .com or .icu.
You have two types to choose from, a local domain such as .co.uk or an international domain like .com or .icu.
Choosing a domain name that is best suited to your business should be influenced by your objectives.
Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of both to help you find out which type will be most effective for you or your business.
Using an international domain
Due to generic international domains such as .com, .net, and .org being used by so many; search engines deeply trust them. This means that websites which use generic international domains may be easier to rank on Google.
International domains can also help to establish a more global online presence for your website. For instance, if your services are offered globally, you will want to go with an international domain because a local domain such as .co.uk may give users the impression that a website is for the UK only, which would be limiting for your business.
So, let’s look take a quick look at the pros and cons:
International domain pros
- Both users and search engines deeply trust major generic international domains such as .com
- International domains help to attract worldwide traffic to your website
- New international domains such as .icu let domain businesses or individuals be more specific with their website domain name
International domain cons
- Some generic international domains such as .biz and .info have a terrible reputation with users and Google
- With a generic international domain, it might be more challenging to target and attract a local audience
Using a local domain
While a website’s SEO ranking is usually improved through the use of an international domain, using a local domain could still prove beneficial – depending on what you intend to use it for.
As we’ve somewhat outlined above, the primary benefit of using a local domain such as .uk or .nl is targeting and attracting a local audience.
To better understand, ask yourself this:
If you are based in the UK and you are looking for leather boots online, once you have typed your search query into Google’s search bar, will you be more inclined to click on a .co.uk result, or a .com result?
You would click on the .co.uk result for several reasons; cheaper shipping, convenience etc.
So, it is no surprise that local domains are better suited for local business websites and services as opposed to international domains.
If you are catering to a specific audience, and your services apply only to a particular town or region, then it is best to go with a local domain.
For example, if you are a chiropractor that works out of a local practice, you don’t need to be targeting the whole world.
Local domain pros
- Great for targeting and attracting local business, if that is your businesses main objective.
- If a user is searching for products or services on a localised search engine, a local domain may help improve your websites search ranking.
Local domain cons
- Local domains do not have the global range that international domains do, which means your reach may be limited.
- Local domains have limited SEO capacity because they are limited to country-specific search queries.
It’s not so much a question of which is better, but more about what suits you best. We hope that clears things up because choosing a domain should be the easiest step towards building a great website that will help you stand out and be seen.