Just a few days ago, Google’s own John Mueller felt the need to reiterate that new generic Top-Level Domains (gTLDs) still in fact do not provide any ranking benefit in search results. In fact, they’re well in line with how a sub-domain would rank.
Previously when the new gTLDs were making momentum in 2012, Matt Cutts stated this fact in response to an article which claimed new gTLDs did provide a rankings advantage. For some reason, John Mueller felt the need to share this information again as even more new gTLDs enter the domain registration market, 400+ as of December 2014.
For those that may not be aware, you can register domains now with an extension other than the most popular .com, .net and .org. Extensions such as the ones above in the image, but there’s some really stupid gTLDs that have been approved and have made it in the root zone. From there, this has to be one of the funniest images he has on his site:
These days there’s a lot more to choose from beyond the traditional .com, or .net, but none of them will give you any advantage in the search engines. From what I gather after reading Mueller’s statements, there’s no disadvantage to using these either. “They can perform well in search, just like any other TLD can perform well in search,” says Mueller.
The new gTLDs when registered, will act just like any web “page” or sub-domain and is unique in Google’s eyes as www vs. no www is. If you do decide to register a domain under one of the new gTLDs, then you should put a lot of effort into it because it’s going to be a hard uphill battle. For those who have premium .com domains and are just sitting on them, you need to start developing or someone with a hideous gTLD will come along and start and a year from now, you’ll wish you had started today!
You should not be swayed by any posts claiming to have data which suggests new TLDs are doing well in search results. If that’s the case, it’s not due to any artificial boost or preference from Google. You can make a great website that performs well in search on any TLD, but obviously the longer you have it public, the better chance you get to play outside of the sandbox.