After competing with six other applicants including Google and Amazon, Radix prevailed and won the right to operate the .Store new gTLD domain extension. Sunrise for this extension will begin on April 6th. General availability, when anyone can hand register available .Store domain names, will begin on June 14.
One advantage that Radix has is that it is launching before a competing .Shop extension. I think being first to market is key when it comes to competing extensions.
I would imagine the first target audience for .Store domain names is companies who already use “Store” in their brand names. According to DomainTools’ search tool, there are a TON of domain names that currently end with the word “store.” For instance, there are thousands of popular keywordStore domain names registered in hundreds of extensions. Some of those keywords include drug, baby, online, book, play, pet…etc. I would imagine some of those brand owners will choose a name like Pet.Store or something else along those lines.
I do not have pricing details, but it will be interesting to follow along, especially when it begins to compete with .Shop.
The press release announcing the launch is below:
.Store set to Launch in April
First extension to focus on the e-commerce market to be launched by Radix in April
Dubai (18th February, 2016): Radix, the portfolio registry behind several new extensions including .site, .tech & .online today announced they are gearing up for the launch of the first TLD to focus on the e-commerce market – .STORE
A trillion dollar market, e-commerce grew at a healthy 20.9% in 2015 vs 2014. There are over 12 million e-commerce sites on the internet and over 650,000 that make atleast $1,000 annually. Statistics also show that 40 percent of worldwide internet users (1billion+) have bought products or goods online and this numberis projected to continuously grow.
“While the purpose for .store is specific to websites and platforms that offer products or services for sale online, the target market is global and highly diverse. We see a great fit for traditional mom and pop business as they make their way into selling online, as we do for modern start-ups with a commerce motive. The entire spectrum can look to find their ‘brandname.store’ which would be their perfect gateway to a dedicated web commerce site, or short URL to their internal commerce specific landing page. During the first few years, we see most demand coming from existing brands looking to use it as a short, clear and precise call-to-action in their marketing messages”, said Sandeep Ramchandani, VP & Business Head, Radix.
Currently, in the final stages of delegation .store will start Sunrise on 6th April. The TLDwill follow the same rollout as Radix’s last 3 launches. The end date Sunrise will be followed by an Early Access Phase & .store will enter General Availability on 14th June, 2016.
Radix was one of the 7 contenders for the .store extension and won rights to it in a private auction against Uniregistry, Donuts, TLDH, Amazon& Google. Radix plans to leverage its massive Registrar channel which includes domain leaders like GoDaddy, 1&1, Namecheap, Domain.com, Tucows, Name.com to ensure the extension gets maximum visibility and reaches the customer at an attractive price point.
Radix believes the .store launch comes at a good time as Registrars have developed their new gTLD marketing, roll-out strategy and understood customer behavior.
As .store will be the first TLD to cater to the e-commerce market, Radix is geared to make the most of its first mover advantage and capture a strong market share.