What is .xyz?
.xyz is a Top-Level Domain (TLD) extension used when planning how to build a website. As a versatile, catchy, and often more affordable alternative than extensions like .org vs. .com vs. .net, .xyz has grown in popularity in recent years.
Daniel Negari, a 27-year-old American developer, introduced .xyz in 2014. ICANN, the governing authority of the Internet, subsequently approved it. As no one will forget the last three letters of the alphabet, the acronym is highly memorable yet strategically ambiguous. Unlike other TLDs, .xyz signifies no particular industry association or country. Therefore, you can apply it to almost any domain name. And .xyz also benefits from a young brand identity: the domain meaning nods to its founder’s youth and the X, Y and Z generations of many of its users.
The current manager of the domain is CentralNic.
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Who uses .xyz and why?
Particularly avid adopters of .xyz include younger web users, techies and crypto enthusiasts. But in 2015, Alphabet—Google’s parent company—announced it would also use the domain extension, giving it a massive boost to its visibility. Several reasons underlay the decision: First, more established domains like .com were already taken (ABC television network owns and operates abc.com). Second, it provided a snappy and unforgettable URL, beginning with the first three letters of the alphabet and ending with the last three. Third, it implicitly identified the company with a younger, digital native demographic. Alphabet’s decision served as a clear signal that .xyz had decisively entered the mainstream.
Web3 native brands looking to present themselves as innovative and forward-looking (like Block, Mirror and Dune) have adopted .xyz as well. Even legacy entertainment brands like Fox and Paramount have begun their own .xyz sites to get ahead of the web3 curve.
Users of cryptocurrency like Bitcoin and Ethereum have also eagerly adopted .xyz. Negari teamed up with Ethereum Name Service (ENS), which allows users a universal nickname for all their crypto addresses (such as NFTs and digital wallets), thereby offering convenience and security at the same time. The new partnership means that that nickname could employ either ENS’s native .eth domain (such as “nick.eth”) or an .xyz domain (“cryptofan.xyz”), or even a combination of the two. And while .xyz domains currently fall under the established Domain Name System (DNS), developers are building an alternative based on the core web3 principle of decentralization. As Negari himself wrote on the domain’s blog, .xyz has proactively linked itself not just to web3 companies but the entire philosophy of decentralization.
Despite its growing visibility, .xyz offers a significantly cheaper domain name cost on average than its more established counterparts. Every year it offers a number of six- to nine-digit numerical domains, dubbed the “1.111B class” (named after the 1.111 billion possible mathematical combinations), for just 99 cents.
“With Bitcoin at $2,700 and IPv4 addresses at $15 each in bulk, $0.99 per year is pretty attractive,” Negari said. “I am confident people will innovate on our offering.”
While .xyz brings no more inherent risk than other TLDs, prospective buyers must exercise caution: because registrars have offered .xyz domains much more cheaply than other TLDs, some scammers purchased large numbers of domains early in hopes of profiting off them later.
Finally, in terms of SEO, search engines like Google have approved .xyz as a top-level domain name, as long as the website hasn’t been flagged for any reason like spam or hacks.You should check that potential domain hasn’t been used for malicious or offensive uses in the past. And also see what the “.com” version has been used for when choosing a domain name—users may confuse a site for its .com equivalent, and any negative associations could taint your business as well.
How to register an .xyz domain
To register a domain name, first visit a domain registrar. Tip: You can choose dozens of domain-extension options when making a Wix website, from .art to .xyz. And of course a domain name needs to be available for you to use it—Wix also offers a domain name search that can show whether someone has already claimed your desired domain name, and if so, whether a similar domain name is available.
You may also want to consider a subdomain, or a prefix added to a domain name to help navigate and organize sections of a website, often to manage site areas like online stores or blogs. Subdomains operate as entirely different websites, allowing the owner of a site to target specific content that differs from the root domain. While “www” is the most common subdomain, you can also consider options like “support,” “store,” or “blog,” when registering your .xyz domain.
Are websites with .xyz safe?
As a top-level domain .xyz is safe to use. However the safety of your website rests on more than just the TLD you use. Make sure to choose a website builder that prioritizes safe and secure web infrastructure for your site, and your domain.