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Avoid this one specific TLD when choosing your domain name


Apologies for the clickbait headline! I couldn't resist. My intent is to deceive, but only slightly. What is this all about? I was just reading Brian Krebs and his excellent recent reporting, summarizing and analyzing of data from The Interisle Consulting Group, which shows that domains in the ".us" TLD are amazingly prevalent in BEC (business email compromise/aka "phishing") scams.

What this has to do with deliverability is this: while in theory deliverability based on domain reputation is based on the send stats linked to your domain name, your choice of domain can indeed matter to some degree, because spam filters react to what they see. Some might do so with bayesian filtering, some might be manual rulesets updated by a person, or it could be some fancy new artificial intelligence coming to take our jobs someday (yay, Skynet!) -- but any of them could, and some likely will, treat mail from domains in the ".us" TLD more harshly, if and when they observe loads of bad mail coming from domains in that TLD.

Long story short? If you're trying to pick the perfect domain name, avoid the ".us" TLD. And learn more about alternative TLDs and picking that perfect domain name here. None of this suggests a guarantee that mail is going to go to the spam folder if you pick a TLD with a poor reputation, but why shackle yourself with something that could add more struggle and pain, when it's so easy to avoid?

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