After a relatively modest increase in new registrations in 2009 at the height of the global financial crisis, new .BE registrations rebounded strongly in 2010 with another record in the number of new registrations according to the 2010 annual report. There were more than 257,000 new .BE registrations in 2010, almost ten per cent better than in the previous year.
Renewal numbers were also very good in 2010 with an 83 per cent renewal rate of existing .BE domain names, ranking in the top five globally.
The growth in active domain names was nearly 13 per cent in 2010, meaning that 2010 was the year in which the magic mark of 1,000,000 domain names was passed. At the end of June 2011 there were 1,156,953 .BE domains registered.
DNS.be also did some research into why .BE domain names are registered. The findings were broadly similar to previous years with over three quarters (77%, 77.7% in 2009) of registrants linking an email address to the domain and a website in 84.3% of cases (82.3% in 2009).
The registry found that only 12.2 per cent of registrations are defensive (and hence is not linked to either an email address or a website) compared to 12.4 per cent in 2009. In recent years DNS.be have seen a fall in that percentage. The registry considers this a positive change because it means a larger number of domain names are being used more actively.
Most registrants have only one domain name registered, with over three quarters (435,794 – 78%) of registrants having just one domain name. 64,868 (12%) registrants registered two domain names while the average registrant has 1.96 domain names.
In other news in 2010, security was increased with a new procedure was introduced in July 2010 that ensures tighter checks are made on all new registrations. This will result in higher quality of whois data. At the same time, these new checks make it more difficult for fraud and other illicit practices to gain a foothold. Greater security in the .BE zone is also a particular focus in the registry’s objectives for 2011.
For 2011, one of the key developments will be the replacement of all of the hardware on the registration platform, including a number of network connections. This will enhance the performance and availability of the platform.
It will also mean an optimisation of costs for DNS.be over time. DNS.be are integrating some of their name servers as part of anycast clouds, while a number of European locations will receive new equipment.
The DNS.be 2010 Annual Report contains a lot more statistics and information on .BE domain names. To download the report in full, see www.dns.be/pdf/Annual_Report_en_2010.pdf.
To register your .BE domain name, check out Europe Registry here.