Is .us domain extension for “Us” or “US”, or both?

Reading Time | 7 Minutes

Most folks surfing the web are quite familiar with typing domains into web browsers and appending legacy extensions — .com, .net, and .org.

Most United States (US) based internet users have routinely used and come to expect most domains ending in .com for the last 30+ years and counting.

However, most non United States internet users routinely use their respective country code top-level domain (ccTLD) as the primary extension for their websites.

I’ve long known about the United States country code top-level domain: .us. The .us ccTLD was created as the Internet’s first ccTLD February 15, 1985 (33 years old as of last week and counting). In addition, ccTLDs consists of two letters and there were 255 ccTLD domains as of May 20, 2017.

And although .us has been around for quite some time, rarely do I ever encounter as many .us domains in use as I have in the last 6-9 months.  In fact, just the other day I encountered a clever usage of the .us extension that I had never thought about.

As I started my day heading to the office, my wife reminded me, while waving in her hand their “save the date” card, to block my calendar for a trip to San Francisco next month to attend our friends wedding.

I thought it to be a normal, yet elegant “save the date” card until I noticed the printed domain or web address at the very bottom of the card: www.**********forever.us (image and domain redacted per request of friends).

I was floored and excited!  Never had I considered or thought about the .us ccTLD ever being used to represent wedding websites of two becoming one.

Within the US, weddings continue to skyrocket in cost year after year. In some cases, even small, quaint weddings are easily outpacing the cost of mid-sized sedans.

Nevertheless, our friends choosing to use a .us opened my eyes to the possibility of .us being an option for weddings (although .wedding extension exists for a few more dollars).

I wasted no time jumping in the car to head to the office to share this story, but little did I realize that there was more to this story and the day.

As I turned the corner headed to the office, I spotted another .us domain. This time it was a company specializing in solar panel services: LighthouseSolar.us.

Impressed to discover LighthouseSolar.us redirects to LighthouseSolar.com, there website is a one-page with two click image buttons representing their Texas an New York offices.

Interesting enough, the buttons link to LighthouseSolarTX.com and LighthouseSolarNY.com respectively.

I’m always encouraged to discover business and personal brands effectively building, protecting and utilizing their domain portfolios to gain business and market share.

Still in route to my office though, I had a smile as wide as Texas on my face having encountered two .us domains within less than minutes from one another. ?

About one block or so from the office, I was halted by a red light. ?  But as I turned the corner, there stood another .us domain which I had completely forgotten about passing it so many times. ?

This particular domain, SafetyMeasures.us, represents a security and firearm training academy providing the safest, most cost-effective and most value training courses available, per their website.

And of course, you know I checked the .com, .net, and .org for available registration only to find all were registered and resolving to parked pages.

Who knows what the asking price is for each domain, if they are on the market to be sold. Nevertheless, I thought using .us was and is the next best move when legacy domains are registered and out of budget.

However, new domain extensions are another alternative should their be an appropriate and matching term to the right of the dot to represent one’s business.

Nevertheless, I finally made it into the office and got my day started. 3 for 3 .us domains all in one day is not bad, right?  I mean, what more could I ask for or even expect? ?

It wasn’t long before this question was answered as I routinely walk my office complex to break up my work day with a 3-mile walk.

Since moving to the complex last August, I’ve walked by this certain office a number of times, but never noticed the domain name until I saw a company car parked in front of the office: TrueNorthCG.us.

I likely never paid attention to the company only because their domain name is difficult to read on their glass door.  In my opinion, the blue ink is beyond difficult to read and would have been better as larger white text.

The good news though is that the .us domain redirects to 4-L .COM domain which represents the company well: TNCG.com.  I also checked the legacy extensions of .com, .net, and .org to find the following:

  • TrueNorthConsultingGroup.com – Owned by Huge Domains and for sale with asking price of $2,495
  • TrueNorthConsulting.com – Registered and not resolving
  • TrueNorthCG.com – Owned by Huge Domains and for sale with asking price of $3,895
  • TrueNorthCG.net – Owned by True North Consulting Group and redirects to TNCG.com
  • TrueNorthCG.org – available for registration

One truly never knows what to expect when seeing a company using a half-abbreviated domain. In this instance, I’m pleased with True North Consulting Group committing to using and investing in an abbreviated domain.

For what it’s worth, abbreviated domains are less keystrokes, and more memorable for customers.

Nevertheless, I couldn’t spend too long lamenting over this domain before completing my walk and intercepting my next call with a potential partner.

I arrived back from my walk and prepped for the call.  I searched the calendar invite from a particular person for the call details, then I noticed he used the same conferencing service I used: Zoom.us.

If you’re keeping track, this makes the 5th .us domain I’ve encountered in one day! ?

Last but not least, the work day finally had come to and end. I needed to go by Lowe’s on my way home to pick a few things for the house.

As I was leaving the Lowe’s parking lot, I spotted a lifted truck wrapped in ads leaving and noticed had the following .com and .us domains on it: MotovationUSA.com and SC-Project.us.

From what I could make out from the truck’s wrap ad, the a had something to do with motorcycle racing. I later found out that the SC-Project.us provides Advanced Exhaust Technologies to motorbike teams.

Personally, I’m not a real big fan of using hyphens in domains (read radio test).  However, I do understand why the company chose to use a hyphen, seeing their official company name uses one: SC-Project.

In addition, the good news is that SC-Project also owns the matching .com containing the hyphen.  Of course I searched and checked the following domains for registration availability, discovering the following:

As many domains that I encounter daily, I’ve never experienced a day with so many .us domains. I did have a day where I encountered a sea of .org domains not too long ago.

Nevertheless, it’s actually encouraging to discover a number of small, medium, and large companies using .us domains as their digital presence.

In closing and even more so, it’s encouraging to see and experience close friends giving good use of .us to represent their special day of two becoming one.

As many weddings that occur annually, one could certainly make the case that .us domains could become the destination extension to sharethestoryof.us!

See what I did there!? 😉 That’s all for now!

Alvin Brown
Alvin is a serial entrepreneur and digital strategist with an avid love for domain name consulting. As the Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of DNAdverts.com, his assignment is to ensure business and personal brands don't suffer the consequences of common domain name pitfalls.

As a domain investor and business consultant, Alvin actively participates in daily domain auctions. Outside of auctions, he passionately shares his views, opinions, and vision for how businesses should and should not use domain names to generate greater customer growth and revenue.