One week since the roll-out of the new top-level .REALTOR domain, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) reports the initiative has already exceeded expectations, touting 80,000 registrations.
However, not everyone is sold on the templated initiative.
The need for a dedicated real estate domain has been recognized by many in the industry intent on controlling their online presence. In the article mentioned above, Realtor Magazine's Meg White recalls the experience of Annapolis, Md. broker Beth Tyler, who was remiss to find that the .com domain under her own name was a porn site. So when she heard about the opportunity to get BethTyler.REALTOR, she jumped at the chance.
Backed by the NAR, the domain offers a level of legitimacy in an era when online trust is scarce. After members complete the process to obtain their .REALTOR domain, they’re given the option to park the domain with a “coming soon” page, redirect the link to an existing page they own, or have the URL directed to their realtor.com® profile page.
But some, like Teresa Boardman, a broker in St. Paul, Minn., and founder of the St. Paul Real Estate blog, aren't sold. In this recent Inman News post, Why I Don't Want to Be a .Realtor, she explains why she prefers to make the rules on her own site:
Some Realtors have a kind of herd mentality. As a group, we are not the most Internet-savvy people on the planet. Agents often want to hang out on the websites where the other real estate agents hang out because they believe that is where the business is and that bigger is somehow better.
As real estate agents get on board with the idea of paying for premium profiles on the big commercial websites, even sending traffic to them so they can capture “leads,” I’ll be beefing up my local content and my social media strategies.