According to Irish Tech News, 2017 was a strong year for new .ie domain registrations. IE Domain Registry (IEDR), which is the company that maintains Ireland’s official country domain name, verifies that 39,523 new .ie domains were registered.
That’s at an average 108 a day. There are now 237,412 registered .ie domains, which is a 30 per cent increase compared to five years ago. They project those numbers will increase over the next few years.
Why the increase? Nationwide demand has driven up registrations. The new registrations originated from all but four counties in Ireland.
Are you part of this rising demand? If you’re just starting your business, you need a website. Domain options can be overwhelming. Should you choose a .com, .org, or a .ie?
Keep this in mind: If you own an Ireland-based business, a .ie domain is the most practical choice. This article explains those reasons in detail.
All computers that connect to the Internet have unique numerical addresses. The addresses ensure that the information delivers to the right place.
The domain name system (DNS) changes the numerical computer addresses into user-friendly domain names. That makes it easier to find information online.
A domain name is another matter. It is made up of several labels. Each label is separated from the next by a dot (period).
The label’s characters are the 26 letters of the Roman alphabet (A-Z). Note that there’s no regard to lowercase or uppercase letters.
Characters can also include digits 0 through 9 and a hyphen (-). Though, the hyphen can’t be the first or last character in the domain.
A domain must be more than three characters long. It can go up to 63 characters. If one of the characters is a digit, then it can be as short at two characters long.
The entire domain name can’t be longer than 255 characters and includes the separating dots in that count.
Think of a domain name as an address. If you were to address an envelope destined for Ireland, you would add “Ireland” to the postal address. Likewise, you’d do the same for a phone number by adding the “353” prefix to the number.
As we have established, a .ie domain name is an Irish domain name. A .com domain name, then, is an international domain name. You can access either one from anywhere in the world.
Anyone can register a .com domain name as long as it is available. Though, registering a .ie involves a few extra steps. Before you can register your .ie domain name, you must register your company number.
You must prove you that you work in Ireland. The registration process takes longer due to these requirements. Though, it results in your customers having more trust that your company is authentically Irish.
You should choose a .com domain if you wish to target a global market. But, if it’s vital to your company’s mission or products that your customers know you’re based in Ireland, then you most certainly need a .ie domain.
You may still be targeting a global market, but customers need to know you are Irish. One of the typical examples of this are the jewellery makers who create Claddagh rings and Celtic knot jewellery.
They sell their products globally, and customers want to know that they are buying authentic Irish jewellery. The .ie in the domain name assures them that they are.
One thing to consider, you may want to register both domains if available. That way, you can have your website on a .com domain. You can then point visitors to your .ie domain.
Next are some additional reasons to register a .ie domain name for your business.
Thus, having a domain name that ends in .ie lets visitors know that you are based in Ireland or that you are from Ireland.
It shows that your website targets the Irish market because it’s Ireland’s online address. In short, a .ie domain lets your customers know you are Irish.
Domain names are addresses, but they also identify web pages. For example, in the website address http://www.pottery.ie, the domain name is pottery.ie.
Remember also that domain names are used in email addresses. So, the email address firstname.lastname@example.org identifies the address.
Having a .ie domain name means you can get your website online. It also means you can set up a personalised email address. A professional email address establishes far greater credibility than a general Yahoo or Gmail address.
That traceability inspires confidence in your customers. In fact, security experts McAfee once ranked .ie domains among the top five safest international domains.
The EIDR verifies every .ie domain name to ensure that the applicants are who they say they are. This makes .ie domains one of the safest anywhere. They are more secure from cybercrime, fraud, and other potential threats.
On top of that, many of Ireland’s hosting providers offer protection services such as Sitelock to protect your domain from intrusions.
An .ie domain name assures your customers that you are who you say you are.
And, your domain name lands higher in Google search results when people are searching in Ireland because of Google’s automatic geotargeting and the prioritisation of local search results.
Those .ie domains hosted in Ireland that have an Irish IP address perform better on all search engines. The result is more traffic on your website. If you do business in Ireland, you want your customers to find you with ease.
Having a .ie domain also protects your brand. Once you prove your claim to your chosen domain name and your connection to Ireland, your .ie domain name becomes yours.
Anyone can register a .com domain name. Often, a company’s domain name is already taken by someone else due to the lack of restrictions. .ie domain names are only for those with a legitimate claim to the name.
.ie registrations are checked by to ensure that each has a connection to Ireland. There are four necessary steps to registering your domain.
Recently, the IEDR streamlined this process somewhat. Beginning in March 2018, they dropped the need for applicants to provide a valid claim to the domain name.
You can do this by searching the IE Domain Registry.
If you are not yet registered as a business, you can register your personal domain by providing valid identification like your driver’s licence, passport, and proof of address.
Though, if yours is a registered company, some of the documentation you’ll need includes your RBN number, CRO number, and Irish VAT number.
You may also need your tax clearance certificate from Ireland’s Revenue Commissioners and Irish/European Community Trademark number.
Finally, you may need to provide your WIPO Trademark number and correspondence from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to show you are registered to trade and reside in Ireland.
Accredited .ie Registrars are organisations and companies with expertise in managing .ie domains on your behalf. Accredited Registrars achieve their status by providing consistent expertise in the area of domain registration.
They can assist you with your registration queries. The registrar will also provide you with hosting and email packages.
After you choose your Registrar, complete and submit the application they provide you. Include the required supporting documentation. The Registrar reviews the application.
If all is in order showing your connection to Ireland, the Registrar then registers your .ie domain for you.
IEDR is furthering its mission of providing Irish e-commerce with continued opportunities. They selected Gorey, Co Wexford, as the first Digital Town in time for Internet Day 2018 this past 25 October.
The initiative highlights the economic and cultural benefits of the Internet to towns across the country. The goal is to aid local economies in exploring the full potential of the digital age, especially in the area of e-commerce.
Their efforts are all the more reason to register a .ie domain for your Irish-based business. If you have any questions about registering and hosting, please contact us.