We have all been here. You have a brilliant idea for a project. It’;s such a snazzy name. You are so excited. You go to Namecheap to book the domain and its taken.
9/10 times - its for sale. Sweet! Oh wait - they are trying to sell it for $4000 dollars. Yea no thanks.
If your customers were to visit a site without the .com - would their opinions change?
No, and here is why.
While a .com domain is ideal for recognition sake, users are now accustomed to seeing other top level domains. In a given day I run tools using anything from .app, to .me and even some more interesting name and TLD(top level domain) combinations.
Do not let a taken .com domain stop you from doing the work.
Do not let a taken .com stop you from doing customer research.
Do not let a taken .com stop you from choosing that name as your brand.
Buy any top level domain that fits your brand name, and get to work.