Why does a building as iconic as Melbourne’s Eureka Tower want a domain name ending in .melbourne?

The answer, says John Forman, manager of Eureka Skydeck, is Melbourne’s international valued reputation as a centre for culture, food and sporting events.

“We get about 600,000 visitors a year and around one third of those are international visitors,” he explains. “Adding .melbourne to our domain name was a way of reaching out to an international audience and creating a connection between Melbourne and us.

“Internationally, Melbourne is a strong brand. Adding .melbourne was a no-brainer for us.”

If businesses such as Eureka Skydeck, already an established part of Melbourne’s tourism scene, can see the marketing opportunity that a unique, location-based domain name offers, then that potential is greater still for small businesses wanting to make the same link with their locale.

Mr Forman says securing a premium location-based domain name is a quick way to supercharge a business’ marketing efforts and ensure its name is found quickly in international searches.

It’s a strategy that’s working well for another local business also keen to trade on Melbourne’s excellent name, Sausages Made Simple.

Small business operator Sara Grazia’s bespoke sausage-making business might be a world away from the international crowd frequenting Eureka Skydeck, but she also has international ambitions for her very ‘Melbourne’ small goods company.

Ms Grazia set up Sausages Made Simple, which offers traditional sausage and salami-making courses and DIY kits for home cooks, as a nod to her Melbourne-Italian roots. She was keen to ensure the traditional recipes for home-made salami – handed down to her by her mother and grandparents – continued to be taught through her own methods.

She registered www.salami.melbourne as a way to give her business a unique moniker that was not only memorable and quirky, but stood out in Internet searches for rival smallgoods firms based in Melbourne.

In David vs Goliath fashion, this savvy move by Ms Grazia means she beat the likes Don Smallgoods, KR Castlemaine and Bertocchi to own the highly competitive salami sector in Melbourne online.

Although regarded as a niche business, Sausages Made Simple business development manager Ross Holderness says the new domain has been a success for the company, revealing salami enthusiasts in surprising new locations. By changing the business name to include a .melbourne suffix, the business now reaches a far-wider interstate and, in some cases, international audience because of its distinctly Melbourne connection.

“Our .melbourne address basically sends customers directly to us,” explains Mr Holderness. “In an online search, people instantly know we are somewhere in Melbourne. We stand out and are easily identifiable, as opposed to a .com website, where people have to scroll through your website to find out where you are.

“We do a lot of international mail order stuff now, and when people see that we are from Melbourne – particularly Canadian and American audiences – they get really excited about it because Melbourne is known to be one of the foodie capitals of the world.”

Whether creating a catchy, quirky address that sticks in users’ minds, or ensuring a business cashes in on the natural advantage afforded by its Melbourne foodie credentials, Mr Holderness says the benefits of the new domain name for Sausages Made Simple have been manifold.

It’s a strategy that’s also working for Eureka SkyDeck, says John Forman. Previously, Eureka Skydeck’s own brand research had shown that most international visitors were only partially aware that Eureka Skydeck was in Melbourne, but the link has been cemented through the new domain name. He is now considering changing the brand jingle to also embed this stronger connection to Melbourne.

“Our catchphrase is ‘Eureka Skydeck: An Experience Above All Else’, but that doesn’t resonate that well with overseas visitors, so we’d like to add Melbourne in that as well.

“We understand that people don’t visit Melbourne just to see Eureka Skydeck, and that the Melbourne brand is far stronger than our brand – so to partner with the Melbourne brand makes economic and brand sense. That’s the main reason we have gone for www.eurekaskydeck.melbourne.”

Image credit: