UK domain names proved enduringly popular in 2012.
With the impending expansion of generic top-level domains (gTLDs), many thought that interest in traditional suffixes had waned.
However, this didn’t prove to be the case, as the second-highest value .co.uk domain sale of all time took place in October of last year ($500,000 paid for webhosting.co.uk), highlighting the interest companies still have in this gTLD.
There were a number of other high-profile purchases, with the rest of the top ten transactions of 2012 all fetching at least $20,000. Included in this list are jobcentre.co.uk ($27,500) cheapcruises.co.uk ($80,400) and watertanks.co.uk ($21,000).
Indeed, research by the domain name marketplace Sedo points to the fact that the UK is now the third-biggest market in the world when it comes to domain name sales, which shows that businesses are still eager to get some of the Internet real estate on offer.
While there are no doubts about the current strength of the .co.uk TLD for UK businesses and consumers, the long-term value of the .co.uk is threatened both by expansion of new gTLDs and recent activity to open the second-level .uk space. Regardless of these direct impacts, the rise of .co.uk domain name sales points to the value of a region that has a high user adoption of the geo-specific TLD, similar to Germany (.de).