Dot jcb – Strategic use of country code domains

Main takeouts of dot jcb Case study

  1. Dot jcb supports the launch of their new global corporate website, that consists of one global website which is localized in a certain number of countries. The domains used are global.jcb for the global site and four local versions using two letter. character codes for countries, inverting the ccTLD usual domain name.
  2. There is no domain redirecting to another or to existing content. JCB has only created 7 domains in total, and only one does not resolve.
  3. JCB had been running domain tests for six months before activation.
  4. To date, JCB migrated only the domains with lower traffic and risk. The main countries (Japan, China and Taiwan) are still using the previous domain name and websites.
  5. In spite of a not particularly SEO optimised website, the sites appear quite high on Google when searching for the brand name.

The detailed study can be found in our member’s section. https://observatory.domains/members-access/

JCB

Founded in 1961 as Japan Credit Bureau, JCB has been leading the Japanese credit card market for over 50 years, and its cards are now issued in 20 different countries and territories.

JCB does not own jcb.com. The contract between ICANN and JCB was signed in November 2014, just after the specification 13 was successfully requested in September 2014. The domain was then delegated to the root zone in January 2015.  GMO Registry is providing the back-end services for dot JCB.

Multi-criteria analysis

dot jcb multi-criteria analysis

Content: Overall, there are 1641 pages registered by Google on the dot JCB Top Level Domain, which rank it 21st out of all dot brand domains. No domain appears to use SSL certificates.

Popularity: JCB’s core markets are Japan, China and Korea. They implement a regional approach of the dot JCB, keeping for the time being these core markets on the legacy TLD. Therefore, the popularity of the domain names is average.

SEO: The sites have not be optimised. Out of the 49 tests performed by a standard SEO check tool, 20 failed. No clear keywords can be identified in the text copy. Yet, when searching for ‘JCB’ or ‘JCB card’, the new TLD sites appear to be well ranked.

Taxonomy: The taxonomy for dot JCB is quite straightforward. Apart from global and nic, there are only two character codes corresponding to specific country codes. The use of two character codes does require some administrative effort upfront, and our tool scores this accordingly, with a good taxonomy score.

Volume: Only seven domain names were created, but out of them, only six are actually active. This leads to an average score for volume criteria.

Main site

global.jcb main screen
JCB has introduced a new corporate website with regional versions. The new website has been deployed exclusively using dot jcb domain name, and all the dot jcb domains host the new website – apart from ph.jcb, who was launched already early 2016. The three main sites – Korea, Japan and China – as well as Europe and USA have not been migrated, and furthermore they are different sites with a different look and feel.

Conclusion

JCB is the first brand to launch with a consistant “Country Code Second Level Domain Names” series of websites. Some others, such as abbott or linde have applied for country codes at the second level, but the DNS for these domains was not set up. The domains were registered early 2016, showing that it is a well thought-over strategy. Learn also how JCB is communicating on this launch, on social media and other means, and how these sites are ranked in the members section of the dot brand observatory.