Four Million Domains Registered In New gTLDs In Under 12 Months

ICANN new generic Top Level Domains logoIf registration numbers are what you go by, four million domains registered in under 12 months for the 461 gTLDs across 318 registries and 224 registrars taking registrations is pretty good going. But it is still early days and not one domain name in any of the new gTLDs has come up for renewal yet.

The four millionth registration occurred on 7 January according to statistics published by nTLDstats.com, boosted in recent days by the launch of the .网址 (website) gTLD which rocketed into second place on the chart for most registrations and now has passed 354,400 domains under management (DUM). However 354,414 of these domains to date are registered through one registrar – Internet Domain Name System Beijing Engineering Research Center LLC (ZDNS) and the remaining four to the registry operator. So it’s not likely the public has been registering these domains.

Domain Incite has explained the anomaly as the “registry, Knet, which acquired original applicant Hu Yi last year, operates a keyword-based navigation system in China that predates Chinese-script gTLDs.”

“The company has simply grandfathered its keyword customers into .网址, I’m told.

“The keyword system allows Latin-script domains too, which explains the large number of western brands that appear in the .网址 zone.

“The second reason for the huge bump is the fact that many of the domains are essentially duplicates.”

Meanwhile the .xyz gTLD continues to blow all other gTLDs out of the water when it comes to total registrations with over three-quarters of a million (767,883), however the vast majority of these have been “given” to the unsuspecting registrants of the .com equivalent in a deal with Network Solutions.

In third place is .club with 165,973 DUMs who, like Donuts with their 158 gTLDs up and running, claim that none of their domains have been given away. Which puts them in a great place for when domains come up for renewal as if someone has made the effort to pay for a domain, they’re much more likely to want to renew it.

The top 11 includes three city gTLDs – .berlin in fourth with 155,466, .nyc (New York City) with 66,838 in eighth and .london in eleventh with 54,002 DUMs. While .berlin appear to have given away or sold cheaply around 90,000 domains, they like other city gTLDs should expect high renewal numbers. And their future seems safe.

But it’s not all big registration numbers. Some gTLDs charge a higher premium than others and one such gTLD is .luxury. It may only have 1,294 DUMs, but they have much higher registration fees and are aimed at (naturally) luxury brands. So its future would seem safer than many of those with similar registration numbers.

A couple of gTLDs one would have to question their future are .rich and .wed, the latter aimed at short term use for those getting married. Both gTLDs have been around for months and still only have 59* and 125 DUMs respectively. It seems luxury is a better deal than being rich when it comes to domains.

Overall it seems that city and regional gTLDs are being very successful, as are those with a good idea and good marketing behind them such as .club and a number of Donuts gTLDs such as .guru, .photography and .email. But for many, it’s when domains come up for renewal, the first of which start happening in the next few months. Stay tuned.

 * [updated] although with registration prices of around $2,5000 per domain, they do have more of a chance of survival than quite a few others.