.ORG vs .COM vs .NET: Which One is Best for Your Website?


.Org vs .com vs .net – what’s the difference? And which one is best?

If you’re building a new website, then choosing your domain name is one of the first things you’ll have to do. When you choose your domain name, you’ll need to consider whether it’s going to be a .com, a .org, or any other kind of dot-something website. 

To simplify your decision-making process, it’s advisable to utilize a domain search tool that can help you explore available options and find the perfect domain extension for your website.

What’s the difference between these terms, and why does it matter?

We’ll explain it all in our guide below. 


.Com stands for commercial and should be used to describe companies. .Org stans for organization and should be used to describe non-commercial organizations. .Net stands for network. While each domain name extension can technically be used for any type of website, it’s important to classify your correctly so as not to confuse people. 

What is a Domain Name?

To understand domain extensions, we first need to cover what a domain name is. Quite simply, a domain name is the name of a website. It’s the address that you use to find a website online. 

For example, www.google.com.

Domain names are what we use to navigate our way through the internet. 

What is a Top-Level Domain?

Top-level domains (TLDs) are the final sections of domain names. In the most simple terms, a TLD is what follows the dot after the domain name. This is the part we’re covering in this article.

TLDs play an important role in the DNS lookup process. This means when you add a domain name into a browser; the DNS resolvers start by communicating the search with the TLD server. The TLD server then provides the IP address of the domain’s origin server. 

If this sounds complicated, then let’s put it this way: a TLD makes it possible for your web browser to navigate to the website you want to visit.

There’s also another thing that TLDs do – they help communicate the purpose of the domain. This is where you need to understand the difference between .org vs .com.

There are thousands of different TLDs, or domain extensions, available. The most common ones are .com, .org, and .net, although you can choose between endless other options. 

If you’re starting a new website, then you shouldn’t just add whatever TLD you like the look of. Instead, you need to understand the purpose of your website and match this with an appropriate TLD. 

We’ll explore this below. 

DNS lookup
In case you want to understand the technical side of it, this is what the entire DNS lookup process looks like (Image: Cloudflare)

.COM vs .ORG vs .NET – What’s the Difference?

Each domain extension means something different. Let’s break this down. 

What Does .COM Mean?

.Com is by far the most popular domain extension on the web. These days .com is used for all kinds of websites. It’s become the standard domain extension for anyone starting a website. This is mostly thanks to the phrase “dot-com” being used to describe the boom of online startups in the 90s. However, .com actually has a specific meaning – it’s not just a standard domain extension for any website. 

.Com is derived from the word commercial because it was designed to describe commercial websites. If you were starting a website for your business, then .com would be the correct domain extension to use. These days, .com is used as a domain extension for practically any kind of website, though, and that’s OK. 

The advantage of using a .com domain is that it’s so easily recognizable. People will automatically search for .com if they don’t know your exact domain. This can help you get more traffic. It’s also just a widely suitable domain extension for any kind of website. 

The downside is also the popularity of these domains. .Com domain extensions are largely taken up, so getting a great .com domain name that’s free can be quite a challenge. If business websites are set on using .com for their TLD, there’s a good chance their domain name might get a bit complicated. 

But don’t worry; plenty of other domain name extensions do exist.

What Does .ORG Mean?

The .Org top-level domain extension stands for organization. .Org websites are generally used for non-commercial organizations, like charities, non-profits, NGOs, open-source projects, and educational platforms. 

A good example is WordPress. WordPress.org is an open-source platform, while WordPress.com is a for-profit business. 

.Org domains were established as a way to match the intent of domains that didn’t have a place on other domain extensions. Since it’s one of the earlier domain extensions, .org remains one of the most popular options for any non-commercial website. 

These days, anyone can start a .org website, including commercial businesses. However, people still perceive these domains as being reserved for non-profit organizations, so they’re not always the best idea. 

If you do use a .org domain, it’s important to clearly disclose the nature of your business on your website. Otherwise, confused visitors might get annoyed.

What Does .NET Mean?

.Net is the second most popular domain extension. This domain extension stands for network, and it was originally designed to describe umbrella websites that act as a portal to smaller sites. 

Many websites choose a .net domain extension when the .com extension they wanted isn’t available. It’s a widely accepted domain extension, and all kinds of websites can generally get away with using it. 

Businesses that use .net domain extensions usually offer services like internet, website hosting, databases, or collaboration tools. Although, .net domain extensions can fit into all kinds of businesses and industries. 

The big problem with using these domain extensions is that they’re not the standard, so many people might confuse your domain name and navigate to the wrong website. You have to make sure to emphasize the .net part. 

If you use a .net alternative to a .com website, make sure that the .com website is totally different from yours and in a different industry. Otherwise, you might lose a lot of potential customers top them who navigate to the .com site by mistake. 

Choosing the Right Domain Name

We’ve established the main differences between .org vs .com vs .net, but using these domain names isn’t always black and white There are many exceptions as to when you can choose which one, and which domain name extension will offer the most benefits. 

.ORG vs .COM

At the most basic level, .org domain extensions should be used for non-commercial organizations while a .com domain name extension should be used for a commercial enterprise. 

It’s not always this simple though. Any type of commercial business can use a .org domain. They just need to make sure visitors understand the intent of the business, and that the domain extension is made clear in their marketing strategy. 

If you’re looking for a .com alternative, then .org probably isn’t the best idea, as many people still associate .org with non-profits. .Net would be a better substitute.

At the same time, any non-profit organization can use a .com domain extension. This is more common, as .com is widely accepted as a standard domain extension for any kind of site. 

.NET vs .COM

The main difference between .net and .com is that the one domain name extension was designed for networks, while the other was designed for commercial businesses. 

If your goal is to create a community or network of some kind, like a forum, then opt for .net. If you want to make money online, whether that’s through a blog or a, eCommerce store, choose .com. 

Yes, you can substitute .com for .net, but it might confuse your visitors, as most people just assume your domain extension is .com. If you do go for a .net domain, try to incorporate the .net into your branding. For example, say “dot-net” out loud after the name of your business in any marketing videos. 

These days, there are so many domain extensions available that many people don’t consider the original definition behind each domain. The biggest problem will be getting users to recognize your TLD and type it in correctly when searching for your site. 

Does Your Domain Name Impact SEO?

Here’s an interesting idea – your domain name extension could impact your site’s traffic. This is because of mobile. 

More than half of online activity happens on mobile devices. And many mobile devices include a small .com button on their keyboard. So, when a user searches for a website, they will automatically tap this button.

Although it may seem minor, searching for a .net or .org domain extension is more time-consuming, You have to input the domain extension manually, which negatively impacts the user experience. Because of this, many mobile users will avoid .net and .org extensions. 

This is a pretty important reason why having a .com domain name can help your business website attract more traffic. 

Buying Both Domain Extensions

A great strategy is to buy both the .net and the .com domain names for your website. You can redirect any website traffic reaching the incorrect domain to your correct one. This means if someone navigates to the wrong TLD, they will still end up on your site. 

This will also prevent other companies from using your same domain name with a different TLD. This could make you lose traffic to these domains, and potentially lose business to them too. 

Purchasing two domains can be a great investment because domains generally only cost around $8 to $20 per year. If it means getting all potential traffic landing on your site instead of a competitor, the return on this could be huge. 

How to Choose a Great Domain Name

When choosing your domain name, the right domain extension is just as important as the name itself. Top-level domains play a major role in how effective your domain is as a whole, so it’s really important that you choose the right TLD.

Beyond the extension, you’ll still need to come up with a great domain name. Here are three tips to help you choose the perfect one.

Keep it Simple

Although it’s not so easy to do in such a competitive online environment, you’ll want to try to keep your domain name as simple as possible. The shorter the domain name, the better. 

And if your ideal domain is taken, try to add a small keyword to differentiate it. For example, if wishpond.com was already taken, we could try something like wishpondmarketing.com. Our customers would remember it, and it would make sense. 

Make Sure It’s Easy to Remember

Don’t try to be too unique with your domain name. Make sure it’s catchy, simple, and something people won’t have a problem typing out. Using your own spelling of a word could work (such as “brik” instead of “brick”), but it could also confuse potential website visitors. If you do this, make sure to promote your brand’s spelling in your marketing campaigns. 

Don’t use confusing words or any unnecessary words. Just keep it as straightforward as possible. 

Don’t Use Any Special Characters

To make sure that your domain name is easy to remember, it’s best to avoid any special characters or numbers. It might be tempting to throw in a hyphen if the domain name you wanted is taken, but this won’t help. Most people won’t remember it.

People should be able to type your domain address after hearing it. They shouldn’t have to think and struggle with special characters and numbers. 

Consider Other Domain Name Extensions

When choosing your domain name you have many different TLDs to consider. We’ve covered the most popular options in our guide above, but this doesn’t mean you need to limit your options to them. Loads of other domain name extensions exist, and you could find unique options that work with your brand and helps it stand out. 

Soe other domain name extensions include:

  • .ru
  • .ir
  • .io
  • .xyz
  • .au

And plenty more! These domain name extensions include options based around countries which could be a good choice for a local business

Whatever domain name extension you choose, just make sure that you clearly incorporate it into your branding. This could help your brand stand out and stay memorable. Otherwise, people will easily forget the extension.

Check out this video for more information about different types of domain extensions. 


Your website is your brand’s most important online asset, and your domain name plays a crucial role in this. Choosing between .com, .org, and any other domain name extension is incredibly important. It will determine how users type out and remember your website address. 

Just make sure that the extension you choose makes sense for your type of website, and that your domain name is memorable. This will help you build a more successful website that attracts more visitors.

Ready to build your first website? With Wishpond’s Website Builder, this couldn’t be easier. The template-based tool is the best website builder for marketing, as it comes equipped with a wide range of integrated marketing features. See how it will work for your business

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