John Forsythe, the creator of Impossibility.org, has just launched a new free domain search tool called Short Domain Search. The goal of Short Domain Search is to help people find a quality short one word domain name for their new website or startup.
UPDATE – John has sold Short Domain Search to a domaining company. He informed me that, “they're better positioned to profit from the traffic than I was (hence the sale).” The Short Domain Search service and site is still active and useful for those looking for short domains for a web project and business. They've added many features to it since I wrote this article.
This tool is different from Impossibility.org in that the focus is on short single world domains. Virtually all of the good short single world .COM domains are taken and go for big bucks nowadays. Short Domain Search focuses on mostly country code top level domains (ccTLD) which includes .CC, .CO, .IO, .NU, .ME, .BZ, .TV, and .US. The only global top level domain (gTLD) that it includes is .BIZ.
John explained, “The extensions [were] chosen based on two factors: 1. The domains are easy to check for availability (sadly, not all TLDs are easy to check for various reasons), and 2. I started with TLDs that Google says can be geotargetted. In other words, can work the same as .com, and show up for all users, not just for the particular country the domain represents.”
His reasoning for including these specific domain extensions for Short Domain Search makes sense since in Google Webmaster Support they have a list of ccTLDs they consider are ok for global use. Although back in February of this year Matt Cutts shot a Google Webmaster Help video saying he isn't so crazy about domain hacks and vanity domains that use ccTLDs. Regarding startup domains he specially mentioned .IO which is for domain extension for the Indian Ocean. The .IO extension is popular with startups these days since in computer talk I/O stands for input-output. Kinda geeky.
How Short Domain Search works is that the server has a group of 2948 hand-picked words it searches for. All the words are short between 3-5 letters. As soon as a domain becomes available (expires) it gets added to the list. Once someone buys a domain name, it will be automatically removed within a few minutes, “The list updates every 60 seconds, and all the domains are checked at least once every 10 minutes, so the list should be very fresh.” commented John.
Short Domain Search allows you to sort domains by length, alphabetically, or by extension. If you only want to see domains available from a specific extension type in a “dot” plus the domain extension in the search bar. For example if I want to check .IO domains I would type “.io” for all the available short .IO domains. (Don't capitalize “.io” or it will not work.)
Playing around with Short Domain Search I think it is a good tool for startups that are searching for an extremely short domain name and are not concerned about using a ccTLD. For those that are super tech-savy using a non-COM seems to be all the rage nowadays. While I did find some good short domains I would personally prefer a .NET, .ORG, or .INFO over a short ccTLD. I do own a few .US domains though.
In my opinion it can't hurt to try these 4 tools and Impossibility first. You would be surprised by some of the quality 2-word .COM domains you can find still and other gTLDs. Hey, ShortDomainSearch.net was still available to register.
John informed me he has plans to expand the domain extension offering for Short Domain Search. “I plan to add more extensions in the future, particularly as some of the crazy new ones come online (like .app).”
Since the tool is called Short Domain Search John wants to concentrate on short domain names for now. “I wanted to make it easy for people to find short, single word domain names. I think most people don't realize there's still lots of good ones left.” said John about his new domain tool.
If you have any questions or recommendations for Short Domain Search you can email – John AT blamcast.net.