No one could have predicted back in 2005, after just one year into its launch, that .EU would soar to 2.5 million domain names and become the world’s 6th most popular country code domain extension (ccTLD). But from the start, the .EU domain extension has exceeded expectations.
One of the most popular domain extensions, it has enabled millions of businesses and individuals to promote a pan-European online presence. For SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises), .EU provides two key benefits: (1) better brand protection and/or (2) a greater online presence and market reach.
Whether your goal is the former, latter, or both, there is no question that a .EU domain should be part of your domain portfolio strategy.
(Featured Image: The flag of the European Union (EU) / Image Credit © Justus Blümeer)
.EU and your SME: an ideal partnership
SMEs have gravitated toward the .EU extension because of its enormous potential to capture a bigger audience. In fact, the European Association of Craft, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises has said that the .EU domain provides SMEs with “a gateway to better visibility, ICT adoption, and increased competitiveness.”
In other words, .EU is able to provide SMEs with:
- Improved branding potential, visibility, and reach not only within the country where the business is located but within the entire European Union
- Greater flexibility with the possibility to choose a domain name that contains characters from any official EU language script
- Increased consumer trust as .EU indicates you are a legal entity based in the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein or Norway and are, therefore, subject to EU laws and other relevant trading standards
- Better geo-targeting when compared to a .COM for instance
Improved branding potential, visibility, and reach
The shorter the domain, the higher the recall. And two-letter domains like .EU are rare. .EU provides you the opportunity to register a short, catchy domain name that is trustworthy and highly recognised. In addition, .EU offers registrants the unique ability to establish a pan-European online presence. .EU can work in conjunction with individual country code domain extensions, so you can target individual countries, or you can register a single .EU domain name that will be recognised throughout the entire European Union.
Consumer protection, consumer trust
As .EU is subject to rules, laws, and standards established by the European Commission, consumers know that a website with a .EU domain is a safe place. Their rights as individuals and consumers are protected, instilling greater confidence which is likely to foster an SME’s competitiveness and growth.
Smart alternative to .COM
A .EU domain name indicates from the get-go where your loyalties are: you are a business made by and for the European market or are targeting a European audience. While .COM may remain the most popular extension (which, incidentally, makes it quite difficult to find an available, relevant domain name), it does not target a specific geographical area.
Continued popularity: .EU by the numbers
More than a decade later after the launch of .EU, SMEs have continued to profit from these advantages. In fact, even more so, thanks to steadily increasing consumer awareness and adoption of .EU. A 2015 study shows that a majority of Europeans have seen .EU used in advertising, associating it with professional and commercial activities. Perhaps not coincidentally, one in four Internet users said they intended to register a .EU domain name in the near future.
And register .EU they did. Since 2015, the popularity of .EU has shown no signs of waning.
At the end of Q1 2017, ccTLD registrations reached 330.6 million with .EU registrations making up 3.7 million of the total number, firmly positioning it in the top 10. EURid, the registry behind .EU, reports that, as of Q1 2017, .EU has experienced:
- 185,964 new registrations, a net increase of 10,914 when compared to Q4 2016
- An impressive 81% average renewal rate
- A grand total of 3,755,475 registered .EU domain names
Registrants come from all over, but Germany is the undisputed leader with over one million registrations:
- Germany: 1,041,965
- Netherlands: 480,821
- France: 338,668
And, with a 17.5% increase in registrations over the previous quarter, Austria has emerged as the top .EU growth country
- Austria: 110,445
- Luxembourg: 16,824 (a 4.9% increase)
- Croatia: 8,345 (a 4.3% increase)
Think outside the borders: register your .EU domain name today
EuroDNS is proud to be an accredited registrar of the .EU domain extension and to help raise awareness of the numerous benefits a .EU domain name extension can deliver. And for a limited time, we’re pleased to offer .EU at half the normal registration cost.
From September 1st through the 17th , all .EU domain names registered with EuroDNS are just €9.00. Registration includes our Classic DNS package, an Alpha SSL certificate, and a free personalized email address.
.EU domain name registration is open to all businesses, organisations, and individuals located within the European Union (as well those located in Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway). Note that we provide assistance in all official EU languages.
Improve your presence throughout the European Union. Register your .EU domain name today!