Domain names for Cardano-based projects: .io vs. .com

I understand that many Cardano-based projects have domain names that have the .io extension. I understand the pattern: io is an abbreviation for input/output, the parent company of Cardano is Input Output Hong Kong (IOHK), and that many of the IOHK-owned websites are hosted on .io domain names, e.g.,,, and (with the exception being

That said, I thought .com was still the preferred domain extension throughout the world. The cost for .io domains is 5x more than the cost for .com domains. The .io domain is a country-code domain for the British Indian Ocean Territory. Why are people not using .com more often for their Cardano-based projects? The nod to IOHK and the trend to use .io seems to outweigh the popularity and savings in .com. I am hoping to get some feedback from people.

This is related to my Cardano-based project. I have the .com. Do I really need the .io? My project is on a shoestring budget!

It is true that project like to differentiate themselves as Cardano projects by using .io . Also, you are forgetting that it is much easier to find a name on .io then .com since .com if heavily used everywhere. There is also now a trend that people will trust that website with .io is a lot more Cardano related then .com.

However, success of your project doesn’t depend on your domain extension. For example, I use CNFT.TOOLS and all the time when looking trough CNFTs. These are excellent projects that add value to Cardano community and each offers a type of service to Cardano NFT users that you can’t find anywhere else. I have seen very successful projects also with .art .pm and .world.

Basically, domain extension will not hurt your projects. If you make something that is useful and benefits Cardano community AND your are able to reach/market your service, then you will be just fine regardless of your domain name extension. Focus your energy on creating something to benefit Cardano community and all the small details will fall into place.

Hope this helps and best of luck in your project :smiley:


The short answer is it does not matter.

.io is popular among tech startups and silicon valley because it resembles the acronym for the input/output in computer science. It’s not a bad idea to snag all the domains you can afford to protect your brand in some cases. For example a scam project could register a very similar domain, hijack your idea and/or code, and then cause some damage and hassles.

However if you are self funding like me then just go with the cheapest name that works and focus on adding real value to the community. Honestly your development time frame will be roughly 1-3 years if you are building something useful on a low budget team of less than 3 people. Even well funded larger projects like are not worried about using popular domain names.

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