It’s been about a month now since I received an email from one of my ISPs hitting me up with the sales pitch for the new top level domain:
“Don’t miss your chance to enter the Asian market with a .asia domain name. A .asia domain name is your key to doing business in this fast-growing region, which is home to more than 60% of the world's population and more 400 million Internet users. Registration has started, and the best names are still available but will go quickly…”
The hype aside, they did make some compelling reasons to invest in yet another domain portfolio, including the facts that many of the best names are still available; owners can protect their trademark or organization name from being registered by others; and that the pre-registration (“sunrise”) process was the best chance of getting your first-choice name, with applications submitted quickly after the appropriate registration stage opens.
According to promoters, the Asia/Pacific economy, which spans from Turkey to Japan, can now be reached with one regional domain name rather than registering one for each individual country.
Since “Asia is a natural word,” some expect search engine rankings to be better; and with over a third of the world’s Internet users located in Asia, the traffic is already waiting.
I did find one amusing statement in the pitch, though, which claimed prospective buyers “Are almost guaranteed to get the domain name you really want because .asia follows an auction model when there are two or more applicants for the same domain name.”
Yeah, “almost guaranteed” – if you have the budget to out-bid the other guy!
Regardless of the hype, I believe that forward-thinking operators will want to carefully evaluate if and where .asia fits into their portfolio – and then act accordingly.