There are an estimated 311 million domains under management over 1,500+ top-level domains globally. Over the past 2 years, quarterly growth rates have been decreasing since peaks in early 2016. The slowdown is the result of deletes after a period of increased investment from Chinese registrants.
Other explanations to the slowdown are specific TLDs, such as .xyz and .top, which have contracted significantly. Without these outliers, global TLD growth would be at 1.0% for Q3 2017 and 2.5% YOY.
Reductions in .xyz and .top also has pushed the overall new gTLD market share down from 7.5% to 6.6%. The other groups were not affected, suggesting previous gains in those TLDs may have been speculative.
Over 15 legacy gTLDs, only 5 (.info, .cat, .aero, .com, .jobs) have achieved positive growth over the past 12 months. Other legacy gTLDs have contracted.
Highlights from the DomainWire Global TLD Stat Report (Q3/2017) report
- Global domains under all TLDs have contracted slightly due to declines in several larger new gTLDs. Without these outliers, global growth was 2.5% YOY and combined domains globally are an estimated 311 million.
- ccTLDs make up around 40.7% of the global TLD market, with the remaining split between legacy gTLDs (52.7%) and new gTLDs (6.6%)
- Of the top 15 largest TLDs globally, the ccTLD .ca (Canada) had the largest YOY growth at 5.5%
- Most categories of the new gTLDs have continued to grow, except for some of the more generic-termed TLDs such as .xyz and .top.
- The 58 geographic TLDs around the world have an average of 11,000 domains under management. Combined growth of this category over the past 12 months was 8% with a median rate of 1.8%. The largest geo-TLDs are .london, .nyc and .tokyo
- High-growth new gTLDs over the past 12 months include .men, .loan, .stream, .kiwi and .рус.
- Median growth trends amongst European ccTLDs continue to stabilise after a long period of slowdown. Several larger ccTLDs (+1M registrations) have also seen increasing growth trends over the past year. Some of the stabilisation and turn-around in growth might be attributable to decreases in average deletion rates.
- High-growth ccTLDs in the region over the past year include .se (Sweden), .pt (Portugal) and .al (Albania); of the larger ccTLDs, most have a growth rate of around 2%
- ccTLDs make up an estimated 58% of the European market (against locally-registered gTLDs). New gTLDs make only 2% of the European market (far lower than the global proportions).
The DomainWire Global TLD Stat Report (Q3/2017) has been published. The report covers the global status and registration trends in all top-level domains (legacy gTLDs, new gTLDs and ccTLDs), with additional focus on the European ccTLD market.
How to interpret this report
The DomainWire report gives an overview of the global TLD market mostly in relation to the number of domains under management (increasingly supplemented with other metrics such as renewals, adds/deletes and pricing). Domain volume should not be used as a sole marker of a TLD’s success – it is an indication of general reach and relative size of different top-level domains. Most TLDs work under various policy and market conditions, and often have very different approaches to their general business strategies (for example, .brand TLDs are excluded from growth figures, as volume is generally not a consideration for these registries). For many registries, however, volume is an important factor of general health, sustainability and visibility of the TLD towards its intended market.