You’ve probably noticed that some websites you visit end with an unusual domain: .io. If you’ve been wondering what the reason is, you’ve come to the right place.
What does .io mean?
.io is a so-called TLD – Top-Level-Domain – you can find it at the end of a website address. Common TLDs are .de, .com and .org, but there are many more. There is one TLD that currently pops up like may bells at Easter, and that is the io domain. But why? The .io domain has been hijacked. The TLD is assigned to the British territory in the Indian Ocean, the seven atolls of the Chagos archipelago, which is located south of India and mainly includes the Diego Garcia atoll, where a US military base is located. But the TLD has been popular lately, especially with tech and SaaS startups. One example is opensea.io, one of the largest NFT marketplaces currently.
The reason why tech and SaaS companies in particular work with the .io domain is as simple as it is ingenious: It resembles the abbreviation I/O, which stands for input/output and is a common term when it comes to computing processes. This ensures that the domain is not perceived by anyone as a country code domain. Meanwhile, .io is considered a symbol for tech. Moreover, .io is short, easy to remember and as a domain even better reachable on Google worldwide than country domains.
Also popular: endings with .ly.
In general, it seems to become more popular to deviate from the .com norm, as long as it is beneficial to the brand. In other words, the TLD should be chosen in such a way that it reflects the name of the brand at the end, such as bit.ly or freebitco.in.