392 new .ie domains were registered in Laois in 2017, according to new figures in the latest edition of the dot ie Domain Profile Report, published by IE Domain Registry (IEDR), the company that manages and maintains Ireland’s official country domain name, .ie.
The tally for Laois is an increase of 26 percent on the previous year. 24,776 new .ie domains were registered in Leinster in 2017, an increase of 14 percent on the previous year.
2017 was the strongest year on record for the .ie database overall. 39,523 new .ie domains were registered in 2017, a 14 percent increase on 2016.
There are now 237,412 .ie domains in the database, a 7 percent increase on the previous year end and an almost 30 percent increase on five years ago.
Commenting on the report, David Curtin, Chief Executive of IEDR, said:
“The .ie domain remains the preferred online address and a powerful digital tool for businesses, organisations and individuals in Ireland.
“A .ie domain is immediately identifiably Irish, and is recognised as authentic and trustworthy.
“Online address registrations are often recognised as a forward indicator of economic growth and entrepreneurship.
“The increase in registrations in Laois, and indeed in Leinster, shows that local businesses have the confidence and willingness to invest in their online presence and digital processes.
“However, we still have a lot of work to do.
“According to IEDR’s most recent dot ie Digital Health Index, two-thirds of Irish SMEs with websites cannot process online payments, while 1 in 5 have no online presence whatsoever.
“To improve Ireland’s digital capabilities, we are calling on the Government to collaborate with industry and roll out a national campaign focused on teaching micro-businesses essential digital skills.
“Robust broadband for rural communities must also be prioritised. In Connacht and Ulster, a quarter of SMEs report a ‘poor’ or ‘very poor’ internet connection.”
IEDR anticipates continued growth nationwide in 2018 as registration of .ie online addresses becomes easier and faster.
After March 2018, any individual or business with a provable connection to Ireland will be able to register any available .ie online address on a first-come, first-served basis.
Businesses, townlands, parishes and clubs are expected to be interested in the changes. Citizens will be able to register nicknames and short names for the first time.The IE Domain Registry is the official registry for .ie domain names, and maintains the database.