Good question... I dunno what is the right answer to your question. I'll do some research and get back to you if I got an anything. You should email the people at Godaddy as they probably can answer it..
I agree, people will not type in 'the' naturally nearly as much as without the 'the' in almost all cases...my guess is that a HostGator with 'the' in front is worth generally maybe 1% to 10% of the HostGator alone.....
I had pondered on this when I registered.
My company name and Domains.
Should I have "the Bare foot tech" or "BareFoottech".
Asked various People and a marketing consultant friend..
Answer is in my company name and Nickname.
Almost 90% of the hundred asked said lose "the".
And just go with BareFootTech..
Or music groups or retail establishments who have the word 'the' in their name.....
Yup "the" will be good only for movie and music groups I think...
In many cases "the" actually sounds better. You would usually want the non-the version as well if you can..
The Home Depot (has both thehomedepot.com and homedepot.com)..
The HostGator without "the " is better , but I agree that you should take also the HostGator with "the"..
While it is natural in the course of convorsation to say or think "The drug store" when speaking of drug stores in general, when talking about domains and websites, "THE" is not so natural to the average surfer. It's more like Drugstore.com is a biz name or a brand rather than just a noun..
Thinking "Thedrugstore.com" in this case is like thinking "The Sears". Most no one says, "I'm going to THE sears" unless they say, "I'm going to the sears on the south side" (as opposed to the one on the north side of the city). Even then many will not use "THE"..
I'm sure maybe there is a scenario or 2 where "THE" would be better or not a bad choice, but 99% of the time, for get the "THE" when regging/developing domains..
Also, I would not reg both unless you have big plans or you think the "THE" HostGator will get snatched up by someone else soon. No need for the added expense if not needed desparately...
I suppose for rock group The The, you would register TheTheThe.com......
Sometimes it does give a different meaning..
Beatles.com - a GoDaddy site about bugs.
Thebeatles.com - a GoDaddy site about a band.
Coasters.org - a GoDaddy site for roller coasters?.
Thecoasters.org - another GoDaddy site about a band?.
4thofJuly.us - a date.
The4thOfJuly.us - a US holiday and common phrase (I actually have this domain).
I actually have sold the4thofjuly.com twice in the past. Sold once, picked up on drop and sold again. I've also never had the version without "the"..
"the" is not always useless when it can define a particular use of a keyword such as a place, person, or thing...
I think it depends on the situation, but in a lot of cases the "the" is implied. It is 3 extra characters, and people are likely to get confused. I think if your sole plans are reselling the domain, definitely don't get the "the" if you have the option. However, if you plan on developing the site, you may want to look into getting both, and redirecting one of them..