When a business or an individual in Canada thinking of establishing a new website sometimes it is unclear that a .CA domain is the right choice, maybe it is better to go with more common .COM?

Should I Use A .CA Domain For My Website? / Picture, Drawing, Image / MapleDude.Ca
Original drawing by MapleDude.Ca

Today MapleDude.Ca will explain benefits of .CA domains for Canadians and why you might consider to use it.

Show that you are a Canadian

The main advantage of a .CA domain name is that it clearly shows that the owner of a website located in Canada.

It is possible to register this domain if you are not a Canadian citizen, for example for temporary residents, but most of the Canadian domains belong to Canadians.

If your blog or a website is about Canada, it is nice to show everybody this by using a .CA domain, it would give you more trust. Wouldn’t it be suspicious if you went on a local Canadian website which has a domain of an unknown country? For a local business and media using .CA zone is particularity important.

Imagine a firm which provides immigration help in Canada, what would be your impression of such firm if they couldn’t even get a .CA domain? Maybe there are not physically in Canada? Why wouldn’t they create a .CA domain if they sell Canadian immigration services? This is just one example of how Canadian domain can give you more trust.

Think about this, somebody writes an article about something Canadian, what if it is someone not from Canada and he is actually making everything up? How would you know that someone wrote an article about Canada not only to get clicks and ads revenue, but because he cares and knows about a particular Canadian topic?

.CA domain at least can tell you that the website’s owner is located in Canada, this is a good start for the first impression.

I realize that not all internet users are educated, many people wouldn’t see a big difference between .COM and .CA, they might not even notice website’s URL, but more people every year learn about how internet works, so the trust in .CA will only grow with time.

SEO benefits of a .CA domain

Now let’s talk about SEO (search engine optimization).

As you might know Google search engine has local and international search results. For example if someone searches “good restaurant near me” this is definitely a local request, so google would prefer to show something Canadian, if the person who searched for it is in Canada.

With Canadian domain you will stay stronger in local search results and with queries about Canada.

.CA domain does not automatically guarantee you more Canadian traffic right away, creating your website with a .CA domain doesn’t mean that you will get a million Canadian visitors the next day, but in a long run your growing website will benefit more and more by wining .COM websites in local Canadian competitive searches.

Protected by Canada

.CA domains are managed by Canadian Internet Registration Authority (cira.ca), they operate under Canadian legal framework. If something bad happens with your .NET or .COM domain, there are ways to fix it, but those mostly are international domains managed by an
organization in The United States (verisign.com).

Canadians domains are protected by the Canadians law.

For example with a Canadian domain you don’t have to pay for WHOIS service, which protects your privacy. Canadian domains have this feature for free from the beginning.

Get any name you want

There are millions and millions .COM domains. When you came us with a great name for your website or brand, a big chance is that this name is already captured in .COM zone. You would have to buy it out from somebody, which can be a challenging and expensive task, or you would need to add some unattractive things to your name.

There are only 2.5 million .CA domains (2016) compared with 250+ million
.COM websites (2013, techcrunch.com)

It is much more likely to find a great short free domain name in Canadian zone that in the .COM.

Be unique

Even for pages which are not about Canada it can be beneficial to have your website on a .CA domain. Imagine that a person from Europe opens up your article from search results, imagine that there are two identical articles on two websites, one of with is yours on .CA and another one is on .COM (let’s say someone stole your article).

.COM websites are everywhere, .CA looks fresh.

Anybody in the world knows .COM websites because they are present in all countries, but when you see a .CA website in search results, this tells a little bit more about the website than another “.COM whatever”. So owing a Canadian domain can be a minor competitive advantage online even for international visitors.

When it is better to go with .COM?

As more your website targeted to international audience, as more beneficial it is to get a .COM or .NET domain name. If you want to sell your product or a service online, and the Canadian location doesn’t matter for most of the people (nobody cares where you and your website is located), you may choose to use a .COM domain name.

This might be the case for an online game, or for an international media in English, which works for all English speaking countries. If you are a Youtuber who wants to make a text blog as well, you can go with .COM if your YouTube blog has nothing to do with Canada.

Although lately more and more people consider to open an additional version of their website with .CA domain to make a redirect to .COM or for some other reasons.

When it comes to international search results .COM often will perform better than .CA, but it is not always the case. Surely old and trusted Canadian website will beat unknown .COM blog even on international searches, but if websites are similar in terms of the age and trust, .COM will most likely be higher in search results on international English queries, therefore it’ll get more traffic. So if your website has nothing to do with Canada, you don’t have to register a .CA domain.

Patriotism

The last reason to create a website with .CA domain name is Canadian patriotism. When you pay $15-20 every year for your domain with .CA it will go to the Canadian economy and to Canadian government one way or another. This creates jobs and it is good for the country. Sure, it is a very small contribution, but it is something.

2.5 million+ domains $20 every year for each is equal to $50,000,000, not that small number as it turns out. If those domains weren’t .CA, all this money would go somewhere else.

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