Choosing between a .com or .io domain for your project

A few days ago I asked this question on a Facebook Group where there is a lot of founders and marketers:

“Let’s say you can choose between .com or .io for your SaaS. Which option should you choose?”

Personally I prefer the .com option for all my projects if possible. In fact, I think I am a good name thinker, so all my projects on the Internet had or have a .com domain. Almost 8 years ago I started a project called “adbra.in”, the idea was to create a micro ad platform, that was the exception.

I think a lot of people would answer .io is better for some reason since most of the members of that group are SaaS founders and a lot have .io domains in their projects. But most of them answer if they could chose between .com and .io, they will pick the .com option.

A lot of people answer my question giving their point of view and personal opinion, here are some really great answers.

com is better. .io may be blocked by some IT departments but that is changing as it is becoming super pervasive. But many IT depts have a wait-n-see approach on new .tlds. New .tlds are popping up in 3rd world and it makes it super cheap for the spammers to buy in bulk. But as a .tld gets more widespread and the cost goes up, those new .tlds get the OK. E.G. I know .top is super spammy and I would always block that .tld

Here are some .tlds to avoid:
https://krebsonsecurity.com/tag/top-20-shady-top-level-domains/

says Hungh ZDoan

That’s a really good point using data to make a desition, a really good article, and an answer. For the other hand, we have Tim mentioned some stunt for “io” in the tech world:

Is this marketing stunt for io?
The startups who began using io were stuck for .com names, and they were mostly api or data management/analytic startups.. thus the io “input/output” choice

says Tim Kremer

A really good one answer that I liked it:

.com is the safe powerhouse. .io is cool and young looking. For the moment. How will this perception change in the future? Nobody knows.

says Aurel Gergey

My vision for the future for .io is that is not going to become what .com once was, I feel there is not a fever to get .io domains to try to resell in the future, however we should expect big companies paying a ton of cash for really good domains, like Facebook paying $8.5M for fb.com. We can expect big Internet players paying a lot of money for a really good (or short) .io domain.

The founder of AdEspress, Massimo Chieruzzi said:

.com … when you broaden your audience they’ll remember the name of the company and looking for it, by default, everyone search .com
Of course if you own the .com but prefer the .io you can just put a redirect on the .com domain to the .io website

Jan shared a really good article and useful read if you are digging into this, it’s a “case study” for the experience of Plan.io moving from .io to .com, you need to read this article, to fully understand what they did and how that impacted directly on their customers.

Conclusion: for my point of view, if you have the option to chose between that (in the case both domains are available), go for the .com option. If you think your audience is going to remember the .io domain, and the .com is not available, chose that, however, you can do this little trick to get a .com domain if it is taken by somebody else.

You can add “get”, “app” as a prefix in your domain, for example, https://getcomposer.org.