National Pride Online

Why do so few companies in Canada actively promote a .ca domain name?  Have we no sense of pride?  For the record, I have two websites (including talkinghead.ca) that both use Canadian domain names.

You don’t have to look far to find a big company that promotes its .com domain name over a .ca.  Shame on the likes of Scotiabank and The Bay.  Shame.

Why do they do it?

It is just too easy.  Not only is “dot-com” a major part of pop culture but it is also only two syllables and rolls off the tongue more easily.  Perhaps the extra syllable in a Canadian “dot-C-A” makes it unpalatable to marketers trying to establish an online brand.

Shining Beacons of Canadiana (found in occasionally unusual places)

The once proudly Canadian-owned Future Shop still plugs it’s Canadian roots with a patriotic red colour scheme and it’s FutureShop.ca website.

Chapters and Indigo.  Prior to Indigo’s acquisition of Chapters Bookstores, their online property was Chapters.com.  Now that Indigo has a near monopoly on retail book selling in Canada, their merged website appropriately reflects the Canadian heritage and ownership of both companies.  Chapters.com, Chapters.ca, indigo.ca and even worldsbiggestbookstore.ca all reroute your browser to the unusually cobranded domain chapters.indigo.ca.

Even Americans playing in the Canadian sandbox tend to keep their Canadian sites separate, using .com for the US property and .ca to distinguish its Canadian site.  Online powerhouses like Amazon and Yahoo use the top level domain to distinguish their sites.  American Electronics retailer Best Buy, owner of Future Shop, also has stores and a website in Canada on a .ca domain.

Are companies that push dot-com being un-Canadian?  Or is it simply better for business?  You tell me.

© 2010 http://talkinghead.ca

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2 Responses to National Pride Online

  1. DV says:

    Unfortunately, American businesses keep their Canadian sites separate due to pricing and product offering differences.

    You’ll notice a difference in the tendency to use the national top level domain name between Canada and other non-North American countries though.

    For example, .co.uk is popular as is .co.jp in their respective countries. Canada is the 51st state, after all.

  2. This post is worth everyone’s attention. When can I find out more?

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