Today’s blog post focuses on how the Australian internet community will benefit from the launch of second level .au domain name registrations, in comparison with progress made in .uk.
The appeal of a second level .uk domain names
For years, country code domain names for the United Kingdom were only available at the third level (e.g. example.co.uk). In order to expand consumer choice and make the .uk namespace more competitive, .uk opened up second level registration (e.g. example.uk) in mid 2014. Since then, total .uk registrations have increased by over 20%, and second level names make up 28% of these registrations.
This article from TechRadar looks at reasons for businesses to get a second level .uk domain name, placing them as simple and powerful, which they suggest are both good reasons to register one.
“The shorter domain name’s combination of company name and geographical location (.uk) is simple and powerful online, immediately telling potential customers a lot about who the company is.”
Uses for .uk names
.co.uk (commercial businesses)
.org.uk (not-for-profit/community organisations)
.me.uk (blog/portfolio for hobbies or talents) and
.uk (the trusted, new, shorter domain for everyone).
How this relates to .au
Currently, there are a range of different options to register a .au domain name at the third level:
.net.au/.com.au (for commercial use)
.org.au/.asn.au (for not-for-profit organisations)
.id.au (for individual use by Australian citizens)
.gov.au (closed name for Government entities) and
.edu.au (closed name for educational institutions).
As with the launch of second level .uk domain names, there will be no changes to these namespaces with the launch of second level registrations in .au, there will simply be another option for registrants.
In 2020, the .au namespace is expected to join .uk and most other countries in offering second level domain names to the general public. This will bring Australia in line with current global practices, expand choice for the Australian internet community and help protect the .au namespace from outside threats.
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