It’s not everyday that I stumble upon a .co domain in the wild, especially a one-word .co domain in use by a thriving startup.
Once the darling and preferred domain extension for startups, .co — the country code top-level domain of Colombia — has seen its day come and ago nearly a decade after restrictions were lifted, allowing anyone in the world to stake their claim to a .co domain name.
A few years into the Great Recession, a growing number of cash-strapped startups choose .co domains due to an expensive and crowded .com namespace, and the relative ease of finding a simple, catchy one-word .co domain without breaking the bank.
There are a number of case studies highlighting companies having launched their digital presence donning a .co domain — although most redirect to a matching or alternative .com domain. A handful of companies having donned a .co domain are:
- openload.co — online file sharing service
- hinge.co — online dating service
- vine.co — video sharing service now owned by Twitter
- vsco.co — Visual Supply Co., a creative tools and app offering to help make digital images look like they captured using film
- parenthoods.co — redirects to parenthoods.com
- ilumi.co — app-controlled smart lightbulb
- and many more companies with .co domains…
In addition, notable companies having registered a single character .co domain:
- a.co – Amazon
- b.co – Bestseller.com
- e.co – previously won by the late Lonnie Borck of B52 Media
- g.co – Google
- k.co – Amazon
- m.co – Volvo Car Mobility
- o.co – Overstock
- s.co – Snapchat
- t.co – Twitter
- x.co – GoDaddy
- y.co – The Yacht Company
- z.co – Amazon
Personally, I was never a big fan .co domains due to their appearing as a .com typo. Nevertheless, .co domains ballooned to nearly 1.8 million domains registered over a 4-year period post restrictions lifted.
That’s why I found it so interesting to have stumbled upon an acquaintance rocking a t-shirt donning Seasoned.co.
Not knowing specifically what Seasoned.co specializes in, yet knowing my acquaintance is their Creative Director, I couldn’t wait to get in front of a web browser to explore.
I landed at the Seasoned.co web presence to discover an online restaurant community dedicated to improving the lives and livelihoods of food service professionals — employment, training, connections, and perks.
Of course, I was curious about other extensions, and soon discovered that the .com, .org, .net, and .io have been long registered. Specifically, the matching .com has been registered and in use for nearly 21 years — a blog about seasoned cooking tips, tricks, and techniques for a variety of cuisines.
I personally wouldn’t choose to use a .co domain for a startup venture, but I feel that Seasoned.co is a special-case scenario where going with a .co is warranted given .com and legacy TLDs were registered and/or developed.