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The most popular domain name extensions are .com, .net, .org, and .edu. Not only are they popular, but they are also available to anyone, anywhere in the world. When you visit a website with any of these extensions, you can’t tell where the page you’re visiting operates from unless they display that information on their site. However, thanks to the Internet Country Code Top-Level Domain (ccTLD), you can get to know the base country of the brand, company, or entity you are visiting by looking at their domain name.

Related: What are the most popular TLDs

The ccTLD is a list of domain extensions that are reserved by specific countries or regions. The extensions are usually two characters. Three popular ccTLDs are .us (United States), .ca (Canada), and .uk (United Kingdom). You can often identify the country or region in question by simply looking at the ccTLD. For example,

  • .fr is the ccTLD for France
  • .cn belongs to China
  • .pk belongs to Pakistan

The .us domain name is only available to United States citizens.

Registrants of domains with this extension must be a citizen, resident, organization, or foreign entity that’s somehow affiliated with the United States. The .us domain name is available for private individuals to use, although it is mostly used by local and state governments.

Benefits of .us Domain Name Registration

While it is not as common as .com, .net, and .org, registering a domain .us extension along with your web hosting can provide you with many benefits. Here are a few reasons you might want to consider registering a .us domain.

Identify as American

Identifying as an American company or brand can help you build a strong online reputation. The United States is the world’s most powerful nation and a global leader in everything from movies, culture, and politics to business, innovation, and technology. With a .us domain extension, your business, civic group, or personal brand can identify as part of the American brand that is perceived as world-class regardless of the industry or niche.

Be Searchable

 When registering a name that is affiliated with the US, your site will be easier to find. Instead of using generic domain extensions that everyone around the world must compete with to register, a .us extension will make it easy for your target audiences to locate you. Also, a unique domain with a less-common extension can help your site rank higher on search engine results pages with the right SEO. Thus, in terms of visibility and attracting people to your website, the .us domain extension can help keep you distinctive.

Your visibility increases with a .us because Google and other search engines generally display .us websites to US residents more often than other extensions. Therefore, if your brand or business is targeting people living in the United States, doing a .us domain extension registration makes sense for you. 

Promote Your US-Based Business or Organization

As the largest economy in the world, the ability to promote your business and generate traffic in the United States can have an impact on the financial performance of your business. Even if you are a foreigner, a .us domain could help promote your US-based business or brand, or the arm of your organization that operates within the United States. Studies conducted over the years have shown that Americans prefer to buy home-based products and services. Products that are labeled “Made in America” tend to generate more traction with US citizens, so having a website that sends the same message will appeal to more people in the country.

Connect Your Cause and Country

Whether you are selling a product, promoting a cause, or running a civic group, a .us domain extension will indicate to your visitors that you are connecting your cause, brand, or the efforts of your group to your country. This correlation will help more people in the United States relate to your purpose than a generic extension would.

It Is Cost-Effective

Generic domain extensions such as .com, .net, and .org are generally more expensive to acquire than the same domains with the .us extension. While other extensions can cost as much as $12.99, you can purchase a .us extension for only $8.99 on Bluehost. Also, every registry is required to keep a database containing the contact information of registered domain owners. The required information includes the domain name, key transaction dates, contact information, sponsoring registrar, and name server information. However, you won’t have to deal with these “whois protection” protocols from registrars when you use the .us extension.

How to Buy a .us Domain

Buying a .us domain extension is easy. First, check the availability of the domain name you want. You will see if the name you want is available, and you will see a few alternatives. Once you’ve decided on a name, you can register the name after choosing the plan that fits your needs.

buy a domain name

Who Is Eligible for Registering .us Domains?

The .us domain extension is not available to everyone. Only those included in the following list are allowed to register .us domains:

  • A permanent resident or citizen of the United States or any of its territories
  • An individual whose home or domicile is in the United States or any of its territories
  • An organization or business entity that is incorporated in the US, Washington, DC, or one of its entities 
  • Federal, state, or local US government entities 
  • Political subdivisions that have a genuine presence in the country 

Final thoughts

Before you can be a domain owner and start building your site through your web hosting plan, you are going to have to register a domain that reflects your brand and overall message. At Bluehost, we make it easy for you to go through the domain registration process by giving you all the resources you need.

The .us domain extension is a powerful one; it can only be obtained by US citizens, permanent residents, government bodies, organizations, or businesses, and .us websites appeal more to US customers than many of the generic domain extensions. If you want to work with US customers or want to build your brand within the United States, consider registering a .us domain today.

Common questions about buying a .us domain name

Who is eligible for registering .us domains?

The .us domain extension is not available to everyone. In order to buy a .us domain, you must be a permanent resident or citizen of the United States, an individual whose home or domicile is in the United States or an organization that is incorporated in the US.

Can I buy a .us domain?

The .us domain name is only available to United States citizens. Registrants of domains with this extension must be a citizen, resident, organization, or foreign entity that’s somehow affiliated with the United States.

Is a .us domain legit?

Yes, a .us domain is a legitimate top-level domain extension representing a person or organization in the United States.

Who owns the .US domain?

The .us domain top-level domain is managed by the United States Department of Commerce, specifically the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA).

  • Tiffani Anderson

    Tiffani is a Content and SEO Manager for the Bluehost brand. With over 10 years experience across all facets of content and brand marketing, she strives to combine concepts from brand marketing with engaging content through the lens of SEO.

    University of North Texas
    Previous Experience
    Content Marketing, SEO, Social Media
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  1. If I have a .us TLD, can I sell my goods to other countries or only inside the USA?

    • Kyle Bombardier Reply

      Hi Drew, thanks for asking. Yes, you can sell your goods to other countries even if you have a .us top-level domain. While it is specifically designated for entities connected with the United States, owning a .us domain does not restrict you to selling goods or services only within the United States.

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