Despite international economic difficulties in recent years, the market for global domain names continues to grow at 6% and the market for .UK registrations has grown by 11.5%, so competition to secure a commercial domain portfolio is still fierce.
New annual .UK registrations were expected to hit two million for the first time by the end of 2010 with .UK replacing China’s .CN as the world’s second largest country code Top Level Domain (ccTLD) Registry after .DE. Strengthening the UK’s global position in this way has to be viewed as a strong indicator of the growth that the UK Internet economy can expect in coming years.
Nominet reports that 80% of consumers in the UK still prefer to use a .UK website over a .COM website – with the figure up 3% on 2009 and so consumer preference is still weighted towards a local marketing presence.
For the first time, Nominet has also considered the role on Domains in advertising and reported that 65% of UK print and television advertising now includes domain names. Unsurprisingly, a larger proportion of print adverts (83%) featured URLs than television adverts (61%) and .UK Domains were still more prevalent than .COM.
There was however a variation between .COM and .UK addresses based on publication and audience. Adverts within publications with a global audience and those promoting business-to-business goods or services showed higher percentages of .COM addresses, while UK specific titles and consumer goods were more likely to feature a .UK address.
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