Internet domain names may be fading out of fashion with a new study revealing that the majority of Australians do not own a web address and do not see the need to invest in one either.
Of the 10,000 Australian polled for the study, 87 per cent said they did not own or run a domain name. Two thirds of those surveyed indicated that sites like Facebook and Tumblr serve as an adequate replacement for a presence on the web.
The survey – which was jointly conducted by AusRegistry, the .au Domain Administration and analyst firm Effective Measure – comes as a blow for the domain name industry, which is currently trying to promote the benefits of owning a web address amidst the release of new unique top level domain names.
“What we as an industry need to focus on now is raising greater awareness and education about the benefits of domain name ownership, particularly for businesses,” CEO of AusRegistry, Adrian Kinderis said in a statement.
In contrast, the study also revealed that when businesses and consumers invest in a domain name, they see value in also paying for a .au top level domain. Around 74 per cent of those surveyed, who do own a domain name, said they opted for this add-on.
Chris Disspain, the CEO of the domain name regulator, .au Domain Administration said the study reveals the value of the domain name’s brand.
“It’s heartening to now have tangible data demonstrating the regulation and registration policy reforms we implemented more than 10 years ago have helped build trust in the .au namespace,” he said.
“This is supported by the fact that Australian businesses rely on .au for their online presence. Almost 80 per cent of respondents who own a .au domain name use it for business purposes.”